Former Thomson exec creates weddings online travel agency

Miles Morgan Travel owner Miles Morgan has launched an online travel agency specialising in overseas weddings.

The former Thomson sales and marketing director has set up Dream Weddings as a member of the Hays Travel Independence Group, which provides it with ATOL and ABTA bonding.

The OTA’s website went live this month, with bookings taken over the telephone by a team of four homeworkers.

Average booking values are expected to be around £20,000 with destinations including Sri Lanka, Mauritius, the Maldives, Kenya and New York.

The site has been set up with separate branding to Morgan’s eight Miles Morgan Travel high-street shops.

Morgan said: “It’s about reflecting what it says on the tin. There is no crossover between the shops and Dream Weddings.”

He defended the lack of online bookability because of the complexity of wedding bookings and the need for couples to talk through plans with an agent. “It is more labour-intensive but it’s a specialist business. the skill of closing a wedding sale is customer reassurance,” he added.

Morgan hopes the business will start working as a tour operation later this year by contracting its own product to carry around 1,000 passengers a year.

“We will probably do it by stages and do one destination at a time, but we have started working on it. It will mean we can secure better margins and better control,” he said.

Claire Oliver, previously of Bakers Dolphin retail chain, has been appointed general manager of Dream Weddings, while more homeworkers are to be sought for the business in the first quarter of the year.

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