A new sub-brand by Kuoni is a new innovation for 2020 from DER Touristik UK with the aim of significantly expanding sales of bespoke, independent trips to long-haul destinations. The starting point is Asia, with a focus on the emerging trend for independent travel that gets beyond the clichés to discover the real destination.

Taking its name from the company’s adventurous founder Alfred Kuoni, the focus is on seeing destinations through the eyes of local people and getting customers on first name terms  with the people, authentic culture and breath-taking sights of Asia.

Alfred& Asia by Kuoni has been set up as a new specialist team focusing entirely on creating bespoke itineraries for independent travellers who are mindful of the impact of their travels and want to experience the destination in a purposeful and socially responsible way.   

Micro-expertise is the key to success so it’s backed up by a team of experts who have lived, studied, worked and travelled throughout Asia. That also extends to connecting travellers with people in the destination who can give them a local perspective. Alfred& by Kuoni is designed to appeal to independent travellers of all ages who value quality and the back-up of an established travel company to plan all aspects of the trip and deliver outstanding experiences.   

The new website went live in January showcasing experiences, suggested itineraries and inspirational articles and will be regularly updated with new destinations and articles. Rather than online booking, the website guides browsers to call one of the experts  who can share unique destination insights.

The new collection will be available directly to customers, through Kuoni stores and through travel agents, who will call the dedicated team of experts directly. 

Care has been taken throughout to create a collection of holidays which are environmentally, economically and socially responsible and respectful to the natural and cultural heritage.  For example the team recommend a cooking class at Know One, Teach One (KOTO) in Vietnam.  Siobhan Henderson from the Alfred& team said: “I visited the Hanoi restaurant and learned about the excellent work they do supporting at-risk kids. The organisation was established over 20 years ago by Jimmy Phan, who was born in Vietnam but grew up in Sydney. On a trip to Ho Chi Minh City as an adult, he met some street kids who had blisters on their legs from bathing near an open sewer. Right there and then, he decided to set up an organisation to provide them with accommodation, food, healthcare and most crucially - job skills.”

The division is being led by Claire Ross, head of specialist products, who leads a team of six and reports to Derek Jones, CEO DER Touristik UK.

Claire Ross said:  “This has been a year in the making and is part of our strategy to grow sales of complex, tailor-made travel.  Asia is a part of the world where we see huge opportunities to grow.  The region is currently served by Kuoni’s escorted touring programme and a collection of premium beach resorts and tours with our specialist sister company Jules Verne, but does not currently have an independent travel collection.”

Derek Jones,  CEO DER Touristik UK: “Specialist, micro-knowledge is one of the things we know is in demand.  Complex, tailor-made travel needs the support of an expert and that’s where we add value.  We added Journey Latin America to our collection in 2018, which has demonstrated the value of having a specialist division which knows a specific part of the world inside out.”

“We’re committed to identifying new opportunities, looking forward at the trends in travel and investing in developing new businesses organically or acquiring businesses when we find something we know fits our vision.  Our plan is that we will expand Alfred& to other parts of the world.” 

For more information visit www.alfredand.co.uk


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