VP of Business Development, EMEA
Home base: London
Years in travel industry: 17
Andrew Aley, Vice President of Business Development (EMEA), joins TourismSolved with extensive experience in the tours and activities space. In the last decade, Andrew served as the regional director of EMEA at Viator and Tripadvisor, where he developed and led the supply team based in London.
At TourismSolved, Andrew is excited to bring his digital agency background to the team. In his words, "I have been responsible for the digital marketing budgets of some large organisations, I have build many complex digital platforms. My job is to turn the travel experience of the people in the business into practical solutions that deliver for our customers."
Learn more about Andrew:
What's a favorite place you've visited?
I love taking my family to theme parks, our best experience so far has been the Magic Kingdom in Orlando.
What's a favorite memory of a tour experience you’ve taken?
A private visit of the Vatican as it opens in the morning, and being permitted to turn the key that opened the door to the Sistine Chapel.
What is it about working in the travel industry that you love the most?
I love finding out and learning about different cultures, people and places.
What motivates you to stay in the travel industry?
The people I have met along the way have given me such a rich experience. It’s always changing and learning and therefore I am always learning something new.
What’s been a big learning moment in your career?
The acquisition of Viator by Tripadvisor was a big learning experience. The transformation of the whole organisation and scaling that took place so quickly was really exciting to be part of but also a huge learning experience.
What’s one of your proudest accomplishments in your career?
Launching the Waking Up The Vatican Tour on Tripadvisor in partnership with the Vatican. Our guests got to visit the Vatican as it opens with the key holder as he makes his rounds every morning to open up the museum.
How do you see travel changing over time? What’s exciting about these potential changes?
These are unprecedented times for the travel industry, and I see some changes of behaviour and growth of local tourism as a result of COVID. This will therefore accelerate the technological changes that were already affecting our industry. Companies will have to evolve and evolve quickly to be able to make the most of targeting their audiences through digital channels.
What 3 things can every tour operator do to make their experience enjoyable for travelers?
- Make it easy to find and contact your company. As a traveller, it is really annoying to have a question about something you have paid money for and it be really difficult to find a way to get an answer.
- Have a really exciting and personal experience when your guest arrives. A holiday maker should there to really enjoy everything about your trip and that excitement should be nurtured from the first point of contact.
- Especially relevant at the moment, make your buses clean and tidy.
When you’re not working, where can we find you?
Most probably driving my kids around somewhere or taking them to the park or some other activity. Either that or trying to sneak off to watch a Premier League soccer game.