Travel agency owner to open second shop three years after being made redundant

Travel agent Shaun Taylor
By Harry Kemble
09/05/2023
Home » Travel agency owner to open second shop three years after being made redundant

A travel agency boss who was made redundant by TUI three years ago is about to open his second shop in Lincolnshire.  

Shaun Taylor hopes to open his Inspire Travel by Shaun branch in Holbeach this month or in early June and has just recruited a third member of staff to work there.  

Shaun said he will ‘float’ between the two branches, which are just over 20 miles apart.   

He told Travel Gossip: “It has been an amazing journey – just look at what I’ve achieved. My plan has always been to have four or five shops, but we had such a good peaks season I decided to bring everything forward a bit.”

In addition to launching a second shop, Shaun’s wife has just given birth to Joseph, who is six weeks old.

Baby Joseph in Shaun’s Bourne shop

“It has been a challenge and it will continue to be a challenge,” he added. “I do the evening feeds when I get home from work until about one in the morning to support my wife.

“My wife then steps in so I can get in a bit of sleep through the night.”

Shaun (pictured) left his Senior Commercial Manager role at TUI just before the pandemic after being made redundant due to the travel giant’s reducing retail network.  

He soon became a homeworker, but the pandemic hampered business, so he switched to being a pizza delivery driver and working for the NHS as a patient assistant support officer.

In the summer of 2021, Shaun acquired his first shop in Bourne and quickly established his business in the market town.

Asked why he preferred running a bricks-and-mortar business to being a homeworking travel agent, he said: “I was a homeworker, but I prefer the face-to-face contact you have with customers.

“I think the homeworking market is fairly saturated and I think there are legs in retail.

“Also a lot of my customers say that they do not book online. We offer a personal service and we do everything for the customer.”

Shaun believes between 5% and 10% of his customers do not have an email address or own a computer.

Shaun said the Inspire Travel by Shaun branches sell ‘everything’. “Cruise is big for us but we do everything from coach trips to around-the-world trips to touring,” he added.

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