The 2019 Travel Weekly Power List Tells Us Who They Are: “Neither the global geopolitical situation, nor jitters about the world economy, nor any other factor could slow down” the list of travel companies that comprise the 2019 Travel Weekly Power List, the publication’s annual ranking of companies with $100 million or more in travel sales. Just released, the Power List is a window of how healthy the overall tour and travel industry, and its distribution system, are.
And the numbers are strong: including the Top 25 that INBOUND has compiled, the Travel Weekly Power List grew from 49 last year to 54 travel companies this year. Seven companies made their debut on the list, and some returned after an absence, TW pointed out. And nearly every company had grown their sales over the previous year.
All but a handful of these agencies posted increases in sales volume in 2018, several significantly and some the largest in the agency’s history. And few were content to rest on their increased business: They explored acquisitions, launched tech initiatives and developed ways to offer agents more and better training.
The most significant absence from this year’s Power List, TW pointed out, is that of perennial top-10 agency HRG, which was acquired by American Express Global Business Travel last July. That was the only acquisition between Power List agencies, but other acquisitions did fuel the growth of a number of those listed.
Some Travel Weekly Notes on its Methodology: To qualify for the Power List, a company had to have a minimum of $100 million in travel sales in 2018. For purposes of the survey, sales are defined as gross sales of travel products worldwide, whether to consumers or to corporate travelers; the company must be the merchant of record on the transaction from a supplier’s perspective.
At least 15 percent of the sales volume must have been generated in the U.S.
Early this year, the questionnaire was sent to companies that had appeared on the list in previous years; had been in the news because of acquisitions or had grown for other reasons; or had contacted Travel Weekly believing they qualified.
As has been the case for years, Travel Weekly requested that gross sales volume be certified by a company’s owner, CEO or CFO. In a small number of cases, certification was made by an executive at the vice president level but with financial oversight.
While all cooperating companies on the list did certify sales (or made them public), TW emphasized that “it must be kept in mind that even those numbers are difficult to verify because the great majority of travel sellers are privately held and under no obligation to disclose financial data.”
Also, there is no commonly accepted standard for calculating sales volume, and there is no clearinghouse in the U.S. that tracks nonairline sales, as ARC does for airline sales. Where possible, Travel Weekly sought to confirm accuracy in the figures by referring to other data and to articles published in the past year. We also reviewed responses for consistency and used whatever resources we had at our disposal to ensure accuracy.
The survey on which these rankings were based also included questions involving ARC sales, travel-related subsidiaries, percentage of sales from business and leisure, corporate structure and others.
There were several open-ended questions about recent and planned developments to which companies could reply in any way they felt appropriate. Responses to the questionnaire determined the length of the profiles that accompany each listed agency.
Interested in More? To review the entire 2019 Travel Weekly Power List and its related feature material, visit:
To compare the Travel Weekly Power lists for the previous two years, visit: