1st October 2003

The team at the Travelodge reservation centre in Birmingham has achieved an industry first by gaining a Best Practice accreditation from CCA (Call Centre Association). This is the highest stamp of approval in the field and sees the UK’s leading budget hotel operator setting service standards yet again.

CCA has never awarded the Best Practice accreditation to a leisure sector reservation centre before and Travelodge is only the 10th company overall in the UK to receive the honour. CCA’s Standard Framework for Best Practice was launched in 2001 with support from the DTI, in order to provide a benchmark to measure efficiency and customer service within the call and contact centre industry.

Travelodge Birmingham reservation centre continues to grow and the team will be recruiting over 50 staff throughout 2003.

Alistair McMillan, director of Travelodge reservations said: “Our dedicated team has built up an enviable reputation within the business and customers consistently give fantastic feedback about the service we deliver. The Best Practice accreditation is a highly respected indicator of the on-going quality that remains the top priority of our expanding operation.”

Colin Mackay, Head of Standards and Training at CCA agrees: “The Travelodge operation at the Birmingham reservation centre easily met the set criteria to come out with top marks both as an employer of choice, as well as an exemplary service provider.”

The Travelodge team is also busy celebrating the first anniversary of the opening of their
state of the art offices at Castlegate Business Park - Dudley, Birmingham. The centre was purpose built with staff involvement in every aspect of the design from décor right through to uniforms to ensure a friendly and open working environment.

Travelodge reservation centre currently has 270 staff. 75,000 calls are received per week and on average 37,000 bookings are made. Average time to make a reservation is under 3 minutes. Average queue time is 20 seconds.

For further information on Travelodge please visit www.travelodge.co.uk
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For further press information, please contact:

The Travelodge press office at Cohn & Wolfe Tel: 020 7331 5400

Notes to Editor

· For an interview or a tour around the Travelodge reservation centre please contact press office on 0207 331 5400.

· Photographs of Travelodge reservation centre and Alistair McMillan, director of reservations enclosed

· Travelodge has currently 237 locations throughout the UK. These are conveniently located in most major UK cities, on all major motorways and ‘A’ roads.
· Travelodge offers an online booking service at www.travelodge.co.uk and also via telephone on 08700 850 950.
· Competitively priced, Travelodge room rates start from just £30.00, per room, per night and sleep up to four people.
· In 2003 Compass Group plc, owners of Travelodge since 2000, sold the company to Permira Investment Fund Managers. Permira has ambitious plans for Travelodge and is confident that it has an exciting future as the UK’s leading hotel brand.