Four Leading Travel Companies Merge to form the Brightspark Brand to Better Serve the Growing U.S. Student Travel Market

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Brightspark to Specialize in Providing World-class Educational and Performance Student Trips For Middle School and High School Students

Four leading U.S. student travel companies have merged under the new Brightspark brand (http://www.brightsparktravel.com). The four companies – Educational Tours, National Events, New Horizons Tour and Travel and Travel Adventures, U.S.-based and managed subsidiaries of Tui Travel PLC, are being brought together to form a full-service student tour operator. Brightspark will develop, plan and manage educational and performance trips for student and youth groups.

Brightspark combines the best of each of the sister companies, for the benefit of educators and students, to offer exclusive travel experiences with simplified and streamlined trip planning and management services. From traveling through history in our nation’s capital to college bowl game performances to exploring a different culture, the depth and expertise of Brightspark’s staff enables the company to offer a wide range of travel experiences that are specifically geared to educate and inspire students.

“Our staff is dedicated to creating superior travel and learning opportunities and takes care of all the planning and trip management details. Many of us are former teachers who understand first-hand the importance educators place on creating eye-opening and life-changing educational experiences for their students,” said Mitchell Slotnick, Ph.D, President of Brightspark. “Understanding the challenges that educators face in planning and managing student travel, we recognized the benefits of combining our strengths to help change the way educators and students plan and experience trips that enhance classroom learning.”

Brightspark is addressing the concerns teachers raised when they attempt to coordinate the logistics for student travel on their own. The feedback from teachers is that taking care of countless details, managing trip payments or dealing with unexpected contingencies while touring may even discourage some educators from travelling with their students altogether. Brightspark is uniquely focused on simplifying the teacher experience – from initial planning through the completion of the trip and beyond. Brightspark’s solution offers full-service, custom trip planning and management; streamlined, direct-to-parents billing and payment processing that does not require teacher involvement; parent-friendly payment and cancellation terms, as well as 24/7 customer support while on tour.

Additionally, Brightspark offers unmatched access to unique venues and exclusive “Only with Brightspark” travel opportunities. High-quality educational tours include language immersion trips, music performance at world class venues, social studies, science, and various international tours. All trips are customized to meet specific educational objectives and budget parameters.

Slotnick added: “Brightspark’s platform will raise the bar and fundamentally change the way student tours are planned and managed. We expect this to have a profound effect on the quality of the student and teacher experience as well as on the number of educators who participate in the process.”

About Brightspark:
Brightspark ( http://www.brightsparktravel.com ) was formed when Educational Tours, National Events, New Horizons Tour & Travel and Travel Adventures, all wholly owned subsidiaries of the global company TUI Travel PLC, came together in 2010 to simplify student travel for teachers. The four sister companies, each a student travel leader in their own right, have more than 100 years of combined travel experience. Brightspark offers educators custom travel services and solutions, including exclusive tours to a broad range of national and international destinations as well as streamlined tour planning and management services. Based out of Deerfield, Illinois, with regional offices across the country, Brightspark is a wholly owned subsidiary of the global company TUI Travel PLC, which brings hundreds of thousands visitors annually to the United States and serves more than 30 million visitors worldwide.

About TUI Travel PLC
TUI Travel PLC is the world’s leading international travel group which operates in approximately 180 countries worldwide and serves more than 30 million customers in over 27 source markets. Headquartered in Crawley, near Gatwick airport in the UK, the Group employs approximately 50,000 people and operates a pan-European airline consisting of 146 aircraft. The company is organized and managed through three business Sectors: Mainstream, Specialist & Activity and Accommodation & Destinations. For more information visit http://www.tuitravelplc.com.

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Beth Starkin
Peppercom for Brightspark
415-633-3222
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