Midweek Interview with Sarah Pogson, Travelscene 2012 Consultant of the Year

Midweek Interview with Sarah Pogson, Travelscene 2012 Consultant of the Year
By admin


The challenge for the industry is… the ever changing face of travel. We need to be ready to connect with our clients in more innovative ways (e.g. social media), and provide more value-add options for their travel. We also need to harness the internet and make it work for us, rather than against us.

The things I like about my job are… my clients and my colleagues. I love being able to experience first-hand destinations and suppliers in my own travel, and on famil trips. I also like being able to attend events like the Travelscene American Express National Consultant Conference.

The frustrations… are all the things we cannot control. Ash clouds, tornados, earthquakes, flight cancellations and schedule changes.

If I did not work in the travel industry I would be a… veterinary nurse, who in her spare time travels and volunteers at the African Painted Dog Conservation Centre in Zimbabwe.

Qantas or Virgin? Qantas.

My proudest moment… was winning the “Consultant of the Year” award at the Travelscene American Express National Consultants Conference, and being able to tell my mum she needed to get her first passport, to come with me on my grand prize – a Uniworld European river cruise!

My naughtiest moment was… bar hopping in Koh Samui with the girls on my Intrepid tour. My first (and last) hangover – but thankfully no tattoos or monkeys were involved.

I try to relax by… reading and writing. Also watching movies and catching up with my favourite TV series on DVD.

The last time I feared for my life was… when I visited the Great Wall of China. It was a very windy day, and I was afraid I would blow off!

If I can I always try to avoid… missing a flight! I always get sweaty palms before I fly, and only feel calm once I get to the airport.

I really wish I had… the ability to teleport. It would eliminate my morning and afternoon commute, and make airport check-in a thing of the past!

The best advice I ever received was… be yourself, and never lose sight of the big picture.

I don’t understand why… there are still travellers who do not use a travel agent. The internet can give you a million options, but a travel agent can tell you which option out of the million suits you. I have a favourite repeat client who tells me she loves being able to book with me, as she avoids all the added stress of trying to book her holiday herself. She goes on holiday to avoid stress – not to create more! By booking with me she knows everything is taken care of, and all she has to do is pack and relax.

My greatest weakness is… chocolate and white chocolate raspberry liquorice bullets in particular.

My greatest strength is… my attention to detail when it comes to itinerary planning. This skill also makes me the go-to girl in the office when it comes to visa application and document dressing.

If I was prime minister I would… hope I had a good team to advise me and would be thankful to represent the best country in the world.

If I won $1,000,000 in the lottery I would… pay off my mother’s mortgage and buy myself a home close to work. I would donate some to my favourite charities, and then invest the rest for future travel!

If I would be someone else for the day I would be… Sir Richard Branson, preferably on a Virgin Galactic flight.

I’ve always wanted to travel to… the Galapagos Islands, Alaska, Russia, and Scandinavia… The list just keeps getting longer!

My favourite holiday was… Africa. Overland from Nairobi to Victoria Falls, with a jaunt into the Masai Mara, and an extension to Hwange National Park at the end. Seeing the big five all in the one day in the Serengeti was an ultimate highlight. I would love to go back and explore more!

Email the Travel Weekly team at traveldesk@travelweekly.com.au

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