Virtuoso brings together more than 200 in Bangkok for annual Forum

Member agency owners and managers came together for networking and professional development.

VIRTUOSO owners and managers from member agencies came together last week as part of the luxury travel network’s annual forum, which took place at the Four Seasons Hotel in Bangkok.

More than 200 attendees took part in one-on-one networking and professional development courses during the two-day event, which covered topics from AI and effective storytelling to work/life balance.

Virtuoso also announced its new benchmarking dashboards for member agencies, providing real-time insights that can be accessed through its website.

The platform has been designed to help members drive their business decision making and preferred partner sales.

“New management research on how to best succeed in an accelerating world emphasises the sharing of data and skills is a way to create shared value, but this isn’t new for Virtuoso,” Chair and Chief Executive Officer Matthew Upchurch said in his opening session.

“We’ve done this with our ever-growing database, via our innovation teams, our boards and committees, professional development offerings, targeted brand marketing campaigns and more, all of which create new capabilities for our network and enhance ROI. The common connection in all of this is data, and every increment adds value.”

Other news from the forum included the launch of a new Marketing for Marketers full-day course this year; two new deep dive courses, and the introduction of luxury travel expert Claudia Rossi Hudson as a mentor and facilitator for the Virtuoso Certified Travel Advisor accreditation course.

Virtuoso also revealed data it had gathered from 2023 around how luxury travellers in Australia are currently planning their holidays.

Cruise was a clear frontrunner, with sales increasing by 60%, ahead of tours (21%); on-site destination management companies (17%); and hotels (15%).

International sales have reverted to 2019 levels and right now, Australians are most interested in relaxing and disconnecting from the world when they go on holiday, above adventure, romantic getaways, cultural experiences, and eco-tourism.

Next year’s Virtuoso Forum will be held in Perth.

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