Malvern Group hosts first UK showcase of ground-breaking travel technology in Manchester

OVER 50 senior representatives of the region’s top travel and leisure brands gathered in the heart of Manchester’s business district Spinningfields today to learn how new booking technology is transforming business.

The Malvern Group, parent of company of Manchester-based LateRooms.com, Malvern Travel Technology and Super Break, hosted the showcase at the city’s prestigious Ivy restaurant.

Malvern Travel Technology has spent the last two years developing a ground-breaking trip planning booking technology which allows consumers to book all the elements of their trip (hotel, excursions, travel and meals) in one place.

The technology is available in tiered-level white label packages to travel and leisure brands and several major UK household names have already signed up.

Attendees, including senior representatives from brands such as Blackpool Pleasure Beach, Chester Zoo, as well as a host of the region’s hotel groups and independents, were welcomed with a drinks reception followed by a presentation by Executive Chairman of the Malvern Group, Hugo Kimber, a leading figure in the travel industry.

The event follows a recent YouGov poll commissioned by the Malvern Group which found that concerns over unfavourable exchange rates and Brexit have inspired UK travellers to trust in the multi-element packaging market more than ever

Almost half (47%) of UK consumers singled out financial protection (ATOL security) and convenience (47%) as their main reasons for opting for a package trip.

The findings come as good news for domestic travel and leisure brands with UK-based packages the most popular (69%) followed by foreign trips over seven nights (58%).

The poll of over 2000 respondents also showed that the days of standard accommodation and flights package bundles appear to be on the decline. Consumers now want a broader choice of options and experiences under one booking facility. 

While two thirds of consumers still opt for the ‘classic travel bundle’ of accommodation (67%) and flights (65%), over a third (36%) of respondents expressed a demand for the convenience of bus travel (from airport, around destination and key tourist spots) to also be included in packaging a trip, closely followed by train travel (32%).

The survey also found a clear appetite for packaging to include the booking of experiences and activities too, with almost 1 in 5 (19%) expressing a wish for restaurant bookings to be included in their bundles.

Over a quarter (27%) said they’d like museums/attractions and theatre/shows tickets. This reflects recent findings by AITO’s 2018 annual survey that ‘culture, arts and history trips’ are now the number one travel experience sector for UK consumers.

Malvern’s developers have harnessed the latest technology to create a single platform that supports customers’ ability to integrate all their requirements in one place.

Executive Chairman of the Malvern Group, Hugo Kimber said: “It was a pleasure to introduce Malvern Travel Technology’s new trip planning booking platform to so many of the most influential brands in the northern region. The response has been tremendous. Trusted household names have recognised the innovative approach of this white label provision which offers customers even more flexibility, choice and value.

He added: “We are proud to be a northern-based business and very much value our partners in the region. Our new technology will very effectively meet the varying needs of these present and potential partners.”