The Opportunities and Challenges of Travel Retail

Travel Retail Job Description

Travel Retail, also known as Duty Free Retail, is the sale of goods to international travelers. This can include shops at airports, on airplanes or cruise ships.

In this industry, space is limited so it’s important to balance merchandising and providing a positive customer experience. To stay relevant with the millennial travel shopper, retailers must offer tailored offers and loyalty programs.


Travel retail (or duty free) is a category of retailers that sell goods to international travelers. Its sales are exempt from taxes because the goods are taken out of the country of purchase before the traveler departs for home. Travel retail is a growing channel for global brands and retailers.

Travel merchandising jobs involve setting up store displays in more than one location, using planograms to select and configure display fixtures. The responsibilities may also include adjusting, cleaning, and repairing shelving. Traveling merchandising professionals often work for a specific brand or product, such as cosmetics, perfume, and accessories.

Travel retail jobs can be rewarding for those who have a passion for people and a desire to travel. However, the industry has its challenges: customers have limited time to shop, baggage allowances are restrictive, and product restrictions can make it difficult to roll out new NPD. SPARK is committed to raising awareness and educating job seekers on the opportunities available in this dynamic sector.

Inventory Management

The travel retail industry, also known as duty free shops, sells products to international travelers. The goods are exempt from taxes and duties because the customer has left the country in which he or she lives. These stores are located at airports, on passenger flights and cruise ships, as well as in downtown locations.

Stocking a retail store with the right mix of products is a challenging task for travel retailers. With limited space on a plane or ferry, and with different shopping preferences between destinations, it is important to understand customers’ needs and make smart decisions about inventory.

Many traveling inventory associate positions do not require advanced educational qualifications, but you must have reliable transportation and visual design skills. You will work with a team to load and unload merchandise and set up displays. You may be required to climb ladders or bend over to reach inventory in high places. You will also manage demand and supply planning for launches/POSM for the NARS makeup brand.

Customer Service

Customer service in travel retail is a key component of the job and requires excellent communication skills. A customer service travel agent focuses on meeting and providing information to customers regarding travel products and services including airline tickets, hotel accommodations, car rentals, cruises, attractions, and other related activities. This role also provides information about destinations and visa requirements.

Customer Service Travel Agents are required to follow cash handling procedures to ensure accuracy involving foreign currency exchange and record transactions into the electronic point of sale system. They are responsible for greeting and assisting customers whilst contributing to maximising sales.

Travel Retail is a dynamic and diverse sector that can provide many opportunities for career advancement, especially in the duty-free areas of airport terminals, cruise ships or international border shops. SPARK is dedicated to raising awareness about the industry and its exciting career options. For more information about how to get into travel retail and for tips on landing your dream job, click here to join our virtual information session.

Digital Marketing

The travel retail industry is in the midst of an exciting period of growth. While sales have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and ongoing lockdowns in various world regions, consumer demand remains strong.

As consumers gear up for long-awaited travel adventures, retailers in airports, ferry terminals and train stations must offer a seamless shopping experience that entices passengers to shop and engage before, during and after their trip. Retailers can do this by leveraging the power of digital to provide a truly unique, personalized shopping experience.

Digital marketing is an essential skill for every travel professional to have, whether you work in merchandising, marketing, insights, or e-commerce. Sign up for a free Workello account to make finding better, more affordable marketers a breeze. Start using our automated hiring funnel in less than 3 minutes. Get the talent you need to grow your business. It’s simple, fast and safe. We make hiring easier so you can focus on what matters most – growing your business.

Click further for more knowledge

Design a Professional and Unique Travel Retail Logo

Create a Travel Retail Logo

Create a travel retail logo that is professional and unique with this easy-to-use online design tool. Select from a wide variety of industry-specific icons and designs.

Brands like Nuxe are balancing new travel-exclusive products with traditional sales of minis and travel sets. They’re also using data insights, including knowing where customers are coming from and going to, to align staff and product.

Lagardere Travel Retail

Lagardere Travel Retail is a leading travel and shopping company with a unique position in the industry. Through strategic acquisitions and partnerships, it has established a strong presence in media (books and e-publishing, board games), travel essentials (duty free and fashion) and foodservice. The group also owns a range of well-known international brands (Paris Match, Le Journal du Dimanche, JDD Magazine, Europe 1, RFM and Elle brand licence).

The Group has a total turnover of more than €3 billion and employs 27,400 employees. The Group’s activities are organized into three divisions: Publishing, Travel Essentials and Foodservice, which operate in more than 260 airports, railway stations and other concessions worldwide.

During 2021, the group won important tenders in Europe for Duty Free and Foodservice stores at Dublin, Helsinki, Paris and Brussels airports as well as a new store at Lima airport in Peru. It also opened its first Discover concept store at Hong Kong and Singapore Changi airports, a new Longchamp boutique in Australia and new Aelia Duty Free stores in Brisbane and Adelaide airports.

Travelers have diverse needs that are unique to their location, time of day and journey stage. The group strives to meet these needs with innovative concepts that deliver exceptional experiences. In addition, the company focuses on promoting responsible and eco-conscious travel. For example, it has launched a sustainable shopping bag strategy that aims to reduce waste and stop the use of virgin plastic. It has also partnered with Reforest’Action and The SeaCleaners to further demonstrate its commitment to the environment.

In a rapidly changing retail landscape, the company’s goal is to continuously innovate and enhance its services. To achieve this, Lagardere Travel Retail uses data to improve collaboration between teams and provide better customer service. For example, it provides weekly reports on the performance of its website and advice on areas to optimize. The company also analyzes sales and traffic patterns to help identify potential issues.

Lagardere Travel Retail is a leader in the travel retail sector with its stores and concessions in airports, train stations and ports. It has more than 2,000 stores in 42 countries and a market presence in the U.S., Europe, China and beyond. In 2021, the group’s global turnover amounted to about 3 billion euros. While it was down compared to pre-pandemic levels, it still made good progress in a tough market.

The group is also investing in enhancing the digital capabilities of its points of sale. To do so, it is leveraging Cisco Meraki technology. The solution has enabled the group to simplify IT management, speed up network deployment and make configuration even more flexible. The system also helps to increase reliability and security of the network. As a result, Lagardere is more prepared to respond to rapidly changing business requirements and continue to provide exceptional services to travelers.

March back to the main page

New businesses at Galleria, featuring fashion, luggage, and gift wrap.

New Local Businesses Have Opened at the Travel Store Galleria

New local businesses have opened at the Galleria. They include Johnny Was bohemian fashions for women and Nic+Zoe sophisticated yet relaxed apparel in petite, misses and plus sizes.

Luxury travel retailer DFS Group has unveiled its first Resort Galleria in Queenstown, New Zealand. The store takes a casually sophisticated approach to high-end fashion and beauty that contrasts with DFS’ traditional downtown city center stores.


Samsonite is a travel luggage brand with over one hundred years of history. It offers a variety of travel luggage products like suitcases, backpacks, duffel bags, and toiletry bags for both adults and kids. The company also has a wide selection of travel accessories.

Samsonite has a commitment to deforestation free supply chains for their leather and paper packaging. They have timebound and measurable policies that ensure their suppliers are adhering to these standards.

Samsonite has a new line of luggage called the Cosmolite 3.0. This series is designed with durable Curv material that looks fashionable and is lightweight. It has features that make it easy to maneuver including a mono-tube retractable handle, TSA combination locks, cross straps, 360 degree spinner wheels, and a zippered divider. This line comes in sizes ranging from a 20 inch to a 28 inch. It is available online and in stores worldwide. The company also offers an extensive selection of luggage repair services.

Urban Undercover

With travel as a driving force for the brand, Urban Undercover designs everyday essentials that are designed to go anywhere you go. They are passionate about encouraging experiences and adventures with a focus on sustainability, smarter manufacturing, functionality, performance, and style.

When COVID-19 brought in-person sales to a halt, Urban Undercover founder Sairey Gerner pivoted her business model and moved to e-commerce. But she’s still staying true to her mission, and she’s found success in the new world of e-commerce.

Her Galleria space—a cozy 300 square foot slip of a space in the G concourse—carries the full assortment, along with a fresh mix from other local brands that share a like-minded ethos around versatile, travel-friendly staple pieces. They’re part of Six For Good, a local makers-focused collaborative concept with locations at Rosedale Mall and The Shoppes of Arbor Lakes in Maple Grove. The brands include Hagen and Oats, Thumbs Cookies, Towel Topper, Essence One, and Baubles and Bobbies.

Luggage n’ More

Aside from offering a huge selection of luggage sets, bags, and accessories, Luggage n’ More also has briefcases, duffel bags, handbags, and other travel necessities. They offer a variety of shipping services, including white glove van line service, to ensure that your luggage is safe and secure on its way to its destination. They also provide storage options and have a package shop for those who need help packing and shipping their belongings.

Taj Singh, owner of Luggage n’ More and A 2 Z, has been at the Galleria in White Plains for 17 years. While many other tenants have moved out, he chose to stay until the end. He has already secured a new location at the Stamford Town Center. However, he believes that the Galleria will be torn down eventually.

Gift Wrap Station

A gift wrap station is the perfect way to organize all of your wrapping supplies. This storage container holds 14 rolls of gift wrapping paper, ribbons, bows, pens and scissors, tape, and more! It also features a handy dowel system to keep all of your rolls of paper organized. This storage solution is ideal for scrapbookers, crafters, and quilters, too!

You can even use cute jars or vases to store your embellishments and gift tags. Another great idea is to designate a drawer specifically for ribbon, so that you don’t have to search for it every time you need it.

All season long, enjoy complimentary gift wrapping at the Gift Wrap Station located near Clean Market on the second floor by the Winter Garden escalators. Simply show your BFPL shopping receipt to take advantage of this offer. For your convenience, the gift wrapping service is available between 10am and 8pm. Please allow up to 30 minutes for your gifts to be wrapped.

Keep reading