A travel giant has announced plans to close 166 high street shops in the United Kingdom and Ireland today (Thursday, July 30).
Due to changes in customer behaviour and the growth of online bookings, Tui is looking to move 70 per cent of the 900 impacted roles in the United Kingdom into a new homeworking sales and service team.
In a statement issued today it said that it is now streamlining its retail estate by closing 166 stores and will create a new home working sales and service team.
The affected stores represent around 45pc of those in Ireland and the United Kingdom with around 350 retail stores to remain.
The outlets set to close have been chosen based on a number of factors, including local market data and "predictions on the future of travel", the firm said.
Tui said it will not be publishing a list of potential store closures but none of those which have reopened since coronavirus lockdown restrictions were eased are at risk.
Tui also told the BBC that it had closed overseas customer services centres in Mumbai and Johannesburg in a bid to protect United Kingdom jobs.
On Thursday, the firm announced the company-wide restructuring programme was necessary to cut its overheads by 30% in the coming weeks.
Mr. Flintham went on to suggest that the move is a cost reduction move that is imperative, and that customer behaviors had already been changing before COVID-19. We believe Covid-19 has only accelerated this change in purchasing habits, with people looking to buy online or wishing to speak with travel experts from the comfort of their own home.
The travel industry has been badly hit by Government restrictions in the United Kingdom and overseas, and the consequent collapse in demand during the pandemic.