Contents - July 2005

Special Report:
Crossover business
Although much of the business conducted in the language travel industry hinges on relations between agencies and language school operators, there are a number of companies that don
't fit the prescribed model – they operate both language schools and agencies, working on both sides of the business. Amy Baker talks to crossover businesses to find out why and how they expanded, what the advantages are, and how easy it is to branch into working across sectors.

Regional Focus:
The epitome of Spain for many, Andalucia offers a great climate, cuisine and culture, with historic cities, hilltop villages, bull fights, flamenco and tapas just some of the tastes of Spain that the area offers. Bethan Norris takes a tour around the region.

France and Belgium
France and Belgium are both interesting destinations for students wanting to explore Europe and learn French at the same time. France is a world favourite tourist destination while lesser-visited Belgium has just as much charm and culture.


Staying on top
With the northern hemisphere's summer now upon us, many language schools in the business will be operating at peak performance, with classrooms and host families used to maximum capacity over the next two months. This time of year is when all the hard work during the course of the year pays off, in terms of product development. Business is never constant unless continued efforts are made at maintaining levels of quality and appealing to current market trends.

While it is true to say that agencies usually remain loyal to their school partners, they also have to respond to their clients'; demands. So if a type of course, accommodation or particular destination is in vogue, agencies might be forced to look around if their existing partners can';t provide what their clients are looking for. One school in New York testifies that they have been contacted by agents whose clients want to study at the school, thereby increasing their agency network (page 27).

Schools in Australia attest to the rising popularity of sports-based language courses. As the basic language level improves in many student source countries, school clients are perhaps keener to use English to engage in sporting activities or receive sporting tuition as well as undertaking language lessons (page 29). Schools that evolve their products to accommodate such demands capitalise on this trend.

As well as keeping an eye on client demand, there are other ways that language schools can stay on top. One area that is being focused on by New Zealand and Australia is off-shore delivery of products. Both countries have set initiatives in place to further possibilities for off-shore exports (page 6). In New Zealand, ventures that are receiving funding include a project to deliver a virtual New Zealand education experience via the web for students at international schools across Asia.

Another way of maximising business potential for both language schools and agencies is to consider expanding into the opposite sector and becoming a "crossover" business (pages 20-23). There are significant benefits of operating an agency and school; these companies certainly stay in tune with changing client needs and have less of a peak season to deal with, not to mention a good bargaining position. But such a venture is not for the lighthearted - requiring serious time, commitment and money - although businesses can purchase the experience of others via franchise opportunities or the possibility of working as a sub-agent for a larger operator.

Staying on top

Work rights extended in New Zealand
Australasia builds off-shore business
Canada's one-stop web resource
Sevis has teething troubles
USA pushes study abroad to US students

Travel News
Queensland luring Japanese
More budget airlines for Asia
Middle East market buoyant

Agency News
EA invites agents to Perth
QE visits Moscow and Madrid

Agency Survey
German optimism
The German language travel market performed relatively well last year despite the difficult economic circumstances, according to this issue's Agency Survey.

Malta feedback
The reputation of Malta as solely a young person's destination is definitely out of date, as this year's Feedback survey reveals that older, business-oriented students also study English in the country.

Course Guide
Exam preparation in Canada
Choosing where to study for the formal English exams needed to get into higher education in an English speaking destination can be a daunting experience.

In the business
Business language programmes for working professionals require specialist treatment from the schools that administer the courses as well as the agents who market them. Gillian Evans reports.

English plus sport in Australia
The wide availability of English language plus sports courses in Australia enables international students to experience the country's local culture as well as reap the benefits of an active outdoor lifestyle.

Australia 2004
The Status survey is a venture by Language Travel Magazine that aims to gather specific market data about all of the main language teaching markets in the world. Through our initiative, it is now possible to compare world market statistics.