Tony Laker, Laker House of Travel
Tony Laker began his career in the travel industry more than 25 years ago, starting with Air New Zealand at Invercargill Airport. In the early 2000s, Laker and wife Tracey decided to open their own travel agency in Invercargill. Every travel industry expert (not to mention the bank manager) warned it was a terrible idea and proceeded to list a host of very good reasons why.
Against all odds, Laker House of Travel has quickly become one of the largest travel companies in New Zealand with a staff of 23 and an annual turnover in excess of $28 million.
At the 2019 New Zealand Travel Industry Awards, House of Travel Lakers won the Best Retail Travel Agency, selected from over 300 travel agencies from all travel brands nationwide, and Laker was presented with the prestigious ‘Lifetime Industry Achievement Award’, for his outstanding leadership and contribution to the New Zealand travel industry, something that has only ever been presented six times before. And then COVID-19 arrived!
Laker has an incredible roller coaster ride of adventure to share where he describes a no-nonsense, common-sense, good fun story with controversy, intrigue, some good ideas, and if time permits – a little bit of travel.
He shares the secrets to the House of Travel Lakers success, how they are rebuilding again from COVID destroying 95% of their business, and how anyone can apply these very same simplistic principals to their business and life.