October 13, 2022
An Open Letter to Customers, Suppliers and Friends,
It is with a very heavy heart that we write this letter announcing that Hanover Holidays will be ending operations as of December 31, 2022. It has become increasingly difficult to operate the quality tours for which we are well known, and so we reached this decision after a great deal of soul searching and debate.
Diane and I purchased Hanover Holidays from Ralph & Inez McLean in August of 1993 and from that time forward we invested everything that we had to give, often sacrificing our children’s events, family gatherings and time with friends, to drive Hanover Holidays forward. We reached a tremendous milestone in 2019, achieving record breaking sales. And we were very excited about our 2020 product line up, which we believed would push us even further!
Overnight, those plans went from great optimism to survival mode, with the onset of the COVID pandemic. We were determined to survive the lockdowns and emerge ready to tour again. And despite our Industry receiving very little Government assistance, we succeeded in accomplishing that goal. But we had no idea we would find ourselves in a brand new world.
We returned to operating tours again in the fall of 2021, only to be shut down a second time by COVID restrictions. In April of 2022 we tried again and immediately encountered several significant problems. Consumers with unachievable expectations; COVID; an incredible employee shortage; and suppliers failing to provide quality services, or in some cases, any services at all. Every tour operated during 2022, required a huge investment of extra time, while we faced our own staff shortages. Later in the year, these problems were joined by a number of natural disasters.
Looking forward, the price increases we were facing to be able to operate tours in 2023 are extremely large, in many cases exceeding a 30% increase over current years costing. This storm of challenges backed us into a corner and no amount of planning was going to provide us a reasonable path forward.
We want to extend a sincere thank you to the thousands of customers that travelled with us each year and have appreciated the efforts we made to provide a meaningful travel experience. Your kind and encouraging words were taken deeply to heart.
In the same way, the huge number of friendships Diane and I formed from all across Canada and the United States, created a legacy of smiles that we will continue to cherish into the future. We look forward to continuing to enjoy those friendships.
Most of all, we want to acknowledge the incredible staff, both past and present, who worked so diligently alongside of us and made such a tremendous difference in creating wonderful travel experiences for our customers. The challenges were many and often came in groups, but Diane and I will never forget the dedication and commitment. Our office staff, tour directors and shuttle drivers….thank you so much!!
Jim Diebel & Diane Diebel