Who is this week's top agent?

Who is this week's top agent?
By admin


WANTED: A SNOWBOARDING HOLIDAY TO CANADA

AGENCIES: WANTIRNA, VICTORIA

Mystery Shopper and her partner would like to visit Canada for a snowboarding holiday. While they would like to spend most of their time in the ski fields at Whistler, they would like to stop over in Vancouver to see some of the sights. They are interested in an all-inclusive package and welcome any other information, particularly regarding activities near Whistler. They want to stay for 14 days and have a budget of $10,000 in total.

FIRST PLACE: 96% Helen Williams, Escape Travel, Knox Shopping Centre, Wantirna, Vic

 I was greeted by Helen as soon as I entered and was offered assistance. I explained that my partner and I were interested in a snowboarding holiday in Canada, stating that we wanted to spend most of the time in Whistler with a few days in Vancouver. Helen asked many questions as she collected information for my quote. This was done in a friendly and efficient manner. I was asked my budget and if I had obtained any other quotes. Helen then looked for flight options and while searching made conversation, noting that she had been to Canada once before herself and loved it. Air Canada was suggested as we could fly from Sydney direct to Canada. Helen suggested three days in Vancouver at the start and one day at the end of the trip before flying home. I was then handed the Skimax Canada, USA and Japan brochure as well as Infinity Holidays' Canada brochure and together we chose a couple of options for accommodation at both locations. As Helen had visited Vancouver, she was able to highlight the best places to stay and make suggestions about what places to see. I was asked if we needed to hire ski gear and also about insurance that included ski cover before she called an external person to put together a package for me which took five minutes. Helen then highlighted the options we had chosen and asked if I wanted to book today. I said that I needed to talk to my partner first, which she accepted and then printed out the quote for me to take. As the quote was under budget she also suggested that I could upgrade to better accommodation options if I wanted to. This was an excellent consultation.

How long have you worked as a travel agent? Seven months.

What's your favourite destination to sell and why? The US – everyone that comes back has a new and exciting story to share.

If you could book yourself a holiday right now (money is no object) where would it be and why? I would love to go to Antarctica.

What destination do you sell the most of? The US and Thailand.

What was the last famil you went on? I went on an MSC cruise through the Mediterranean in May.

What's the most embarrassing thing that's happened to you while travelling? On my first holiday alone I left my passport in the X-ray machine. All this was before I'd even left Australia.

Which four famous people (dead or alive) would you invite to a dinner party? Michael Buble, Bill Gates and George Clooney. Everyone needs a bit of music, money and good looks around them. (Maths was never my strong suit, but that looks like only three people – Ed.)

Who is your dream travel partner? Anyone who can take me on their private jet.

What is the strangest place you have ever travelled to? Egypt. It was a very big culture shock and there was a lot to adjust to, but it was amazing to see all the sites.

If you were stranded on a desert island and only allowed one item, what would it be? Sunscreen.

SECOND PLACE: 71% Harvey World Travel, Knox Shopping Centre, Wantirna, Vic

I was greeted immediately on entering the agency in a polite manner. I explained that I was planning snowboarding trip to Canada and that I wanted to go to Whistler for the snowboarding and to have four days sightseeing in Vancouver. I was asked if I needed to hire ski gear which I declined. The agent was full of praise for Whistler, describing it as absolutely magnificent. Airline preferences were discussed and the agent suggested that Air New Zealand was a good, affordable option. The agent then discussed accommodation choices from a Harvey's Choice Canada and Alaska brochure they had in front of them, although I was not given a copy to look at. Some time was spent looking through accommodation options in the brochure. A little later the agent commented that the system wouldn't process the booking inquiry for them and they had to make a call to an external person to assist. Soon after I was asked for my contact details and they promised to email me the completed quote. An emailed quote came through later that day, however no follow up call or email was received.

THIRD PLACE 70%: Flight Centre, Knox Shopping Centre, Wantirna, Vic

In just under a minute I was greeted with a friendly smile and offered assistance. I explained that I wanted to take a snowboarding holiday in Canada. The agent then asked a series of questions to better understand my requirements. They were very thorough, even asking if we were bringing our own ski equipment. Airline preferences were discussed and the agent suggested perhaps starting the trip in Vancouver. I was surprised, however, that I was not offered any brochures at all while we spoke The agent called the wholesaler stating that they would be able to package up some options for me. For an extended period they were kept on hold, but the agent kept up a lively conversation with me. They also used the time to ask what standard of accommodation we wanted and if there were any particular facilities we needed. I received a very friendly email later that day which included the quote.

TOP TIPS TO SELL CANADA

If your client's focus is on snowboarding, suggest a visit to Whistler Blackcomb, which offers a range of packages and snowboard lessons for beginners. For the more experienced and adventurous snowboarder, activities like the Whistler Heli-Skiing and Boarding are also available.

If your client is keen for an adventure then suggest they look no further than the Ziptrek Tour. With three different tours to choose from, Bear, Eagle and Mammoth, this aerial adventure is an exhilarating way to see the ancient and beautiful temperate rainforests of Whistler.

Creative Holidays' Vancouver Highlights package is the perfect way to see the sights of Vancouver when working within a limited time frame. Priced at $128, the package includes two nights' accommodation and tickets for the Vancouver Trolley Hop On Hop Off City Tour. It features stops at Stanley Park, Historic Gastown, English Bay, Granville Island, Robson Street, Chinatown and Canada Place.

Although a popular sport, skiing and snowboarding can be a hazardous activity. Ensure your client has adequate travel insurance organised to ensure a fun and safe holiday.

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

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