About us

Run by travel people, for travel people.

In 1980, with only a desk at the back of his mother’s children’s wear shop in Seaham, County Durham, John Hays opened the first Hays Travel branch. The company has come a long way since its humble beginnings, and today we are proud to be the UK’s largest independent travel agent.

In 1995, the Hays Travel Independence Group was formed with the goal of helping other independent travel companies become a success, with the support of Hays Travel’s buying power, technology, and back-office expertise.

A key ingredient to the Independence Group’s success is our passion for travel and people; as an independent travel agent with over 40 years of experience, we have real insight into the business.

With a dedicated support team we offer a personal service. Alongside this support, we also allow you the space to concentrate on the running of your own business, allowing a truly independent status and identity. This means you decide all of your own policies, including marketing and discounting, whilst getting the best tour operator and supplier commission rates and overrides.

We are passionate about travel and are equally passionate to see you succeed. We are confident that together we can reach your business aspirations.

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Our Values


“When people support each other incredible things happen”


“A motivated person is someone who is inspired, appreciated and does far more than is expected”


“It’s not about ideas, it’s about making ideas happen”


“Respect is earned, honesty is appreciated, trust is gained, and loyalty is returned”


“Excellence is doing ordinary things extraordinarily well”