Agent Wrap: Flight Centre musters Xmas drought relief, Excite incentive winner, ETG’s new partnership + MORE!

Agent Wrap: Flight Centre musters Xmas drought relief, Excite incentive winner, ETG’s new partnership + MORE!

This Agent Wrap is just long enough for you to while away an hour or so of looking busy as you count down the minutes to the last knock-off drinks of the year (unless you’re working through the summer, of course).

Excite announces ‘Cracker of a Christmas’ incentive winner 

Excite Holidays has announced the winner of their “Cracker of a Christmas” incentive. The lucky recipient of the $5000 cash prize was agent Michelin Khouri of Worldmark Travel, Preston, Victoria.

The competition was open to all entrants who made a paid booking with Excite Holidays between 11 November and 15 December 2019, and the award comes just in time for the silly season spending!

Flight Centre musters Christmas cheer and drought relief

While city shop cash registers are working overtime in the lead up to Christmas, drought-affected country town retailers are bracing for a somewhat less than festive season.

Farming regions are in the grip of a severe drought, with paddocks looking more like dustbowls and animals having been sold off and that means whole communities are impacted with very little regional spending.

Kristin Bonner, Creative Director Flight Centre Travel Group (FCTG) devised a plan to drive some friends to drought-affected areas to do their Christmas shopping, contributing to struggling small towns in the process.

In total, 21 people from FCTG went on the Muster including staff from Corporate Traveller. Tara Young, Communications Manager FCTG Brighter Futures, suggested they fill the bus with Foodbank food relief hampers and a sponsor donated over 720kgs of drinking water. Exercise equipment was also donated (thanks Synergy Fitness), computers and a $1,100 gift voucher for new seating at the Bell Bunya Community Centre.

The bus travelled from Brisbane to Dalby for morning tea, shopping at a local craft market and to deliver toys, Foodbank hampers and water. They then headed to the nearby town of Bell to shop local, deliver gifts and to have Christmas lunch at a local cafe. In total, the Merry Muster contributed $17,515 into the region’s economy!

Due to the overwhelming response, a ‘Christmas in July Merry Muster’ event has been scheduled for 4 July 2020, visiting a region yet to be determined.  You can express your interest to attend the next Brisbane event and follow the Merry Muster here at https://www.facebook.com/The-Merry-Muster-107728424001361

Express Travel Group signs technology agreement with Aeronology

Tom Manwaring CEO of Express Travel Group (ETG), one of the largest independent travel organisations in the APAC region, signed a technology agreement with Russell Carstensen, the CEO of Aeronology.

The pact covers all applications created by Aeronology implemented across ETG members throughout Australia and exclusively for First Travel Group (FTG) members in New Zealand commencing with ticketing, robotics, wholesale booking and payment services.

Viking Orion marks return to Australia with agent famils 

Viking Orion recently returned down under for her second Australian season, sailing from Bali on the 17-day Komodo and the Australian Coast itinerary and arriving in Darwin on 15 December 2019.

Travelling onboard was a group of Australian agents, sampling the Viking Difference for the very first time, including the all-veranda ship’s destination-inspired dining, the most high-tech planetarium at sea as well as world-class Nordic spa facilities.

The group took part in multiple included shore excursions – all part of Viking’s inclusive value – on a voyage of discovery from Bali to Lombok and Komodo Island in Indonesia before arriving in Darwin.

From the top end, the itinerary explores the east coast of Australia, including Thursday Island, Cairns, the Whitsundays and Brisbane to arrive in Sydney and Auckland, her seasonal home ports, where she will be based for over three months.

Viking Orion will sail into Sydney on 27 December 2019.

Personal Travel Manager’s travel dreams fulfilled in Bhutan

When Lonely Planet recently revealed their list of the top ten countries to visit in 2020, Bhutan was ranked at number one: a feat which came as no great surprise to TravelManagers’ Kate Bevan, who recently spent a week fulfilling a long-held dream to visit the tiny, landlocked kingdom.

TripADeal gives Travellers Choice members a special Xmas present

Christmas has arrived early this year for Travellers Choice members, with online travel agency TripADeal delivering a gift valued at more than $140,000.

To mark the festive season TripADeal is giving every Travellers Choice member shareholder the opportunity to experience one of its most popular tours – a nine-day journey to China visiting Beijing, Shanghai, Suzhou and Hangzhou.

The gift includes return flights, seven nights’ accommodation and eight meals (including a welcome dinner). And in addition Travellers Choice members can choose between three optional tours: a visit to Tiananmen Square and the Forbidden City, an unforgettable view of Shanghai’s skyline or the ‘ERA Intersection of Time’ stage show.

Beyond Travel team members gains Academy Diplomas from the US Consul

Shelly Partridge, Projects Lead and Gustavo Manginelli , Assistant Sales Manager, from Australian owned and operated destination specialist Beyond Travel recently took part in the inaugural AmCham program and received Academy Diplomas at a ceremony held at the US Consul General’s residence last week.

The objective of the AmCham Academy is to provide relevant and engaging seminars on career development best practices, peer-to-peer networking, and dialogue with senior executives from industry-leading companies.

The academy was opened to up-and-comers from businesses that are part of AmCham, to increase participation of younger generations whom showed particular potential in their respective industries.

CMV famil

Cruise & Maritime Voyages’ new ship Vasco da Gama took its first voyage on Australian waters from Sydney to Melbourne on 1 December and staying for the summer season, the line invited 20 travel agents from around the country on board to enjoy a famil uncovering the secret to smaller ship cruising.

Latest News

  • Cruise

Seabourn introduces enhanced groups programs for travel advisors

Leading ultra-luxury cruising and expedition travel company, Seabourne, proudly announces the “Seabourn Enhanced Groups Program” to elevate business prospects for travel advisors. This program introduces a revamped Tour Conductor Credit that offers shipboard credits or bonus commission for bookings. It also eliminates the need for deposits for small group allotments and increases group capacity. “Seabourn […]

  • Cruise

MSC World America to become the ultimate family destination at sea

MSC Cruises’ latest world-class ship is set to redefine family cruising with unprecedented spaces and activities, including ones developed in partnership with the LEGO® group. The cruise line announced that its new flagship will feature seven distinct districts, each bringing together a range of tailored experiences. The ship’s blend of American comfort and European design […]

  • Cruise

Ponant’s latest luxury cruise expeditions for 2024 and 2025

Head out to see the beauty of unique destinations on three bucket-list explorations of Australia with Ponant Cruise’s new luxury expeditions. Known for their luxury cruises, Ponant offers unique and truly exceptional sea voyage aboard sleek and intimately sized cruise yachts. They offer a range of discovery expeditions, and launched new cruises that take guests […]

  • News

Liz Anderson steps down from CATO Board after eight years of leadership

The Council of Australian Tour Operators (CATO) has today announced that Liz Anderson (at right) will be stepping down from the Board on Wednesday June 19, concluding her eight years as a director. “The eight years that Liz served on the CATO board were the most transformative time in the Association’s history,” CATO Chair Dennis […]

  • Attractions

Comedian Josh Thomas road tests swapping day job for Tassie odd jobs

Australians are invited to tap into a 200-million-day annual leave bank* and swap day jobs for one of 10 ‘Odd Jobs’ in Tasmania this off-season including Wombat Walker, Paranormal Investigator, Wine Whisperer and Truffler Snuffler. Tourism Tasmania has today launched Odd Jobs, a tongue-in-cheek campaign designed to encourage Australians to swap their day jobs for […]

  • Aviation
  • News

Christine O’Reilly to replace Peter Hay as chair of Australia Pacific Airports Corporation

Christine O’Reilly has been named as the new chair of Australia Pacific Airports Corporation (APAC) – the owner of Melbourne and Launceston Airports. According to a release, O’Reilly will replace Peter Hay on 1 October, who retires after five years as Chair of APAC. APAC CEO Lorie Argus said O’Reilly’s appointment comes at an exciting […]

  • Tourism

The number one thing you can’t forget if you’re going to Europe & The Olympics

As the Summer Olympics in Paris draws near, travel insurance comparison site Compare the Market is urging travellers to safeguard their European summer sports dreams by getting travel insurance for when the unexpected happens. While France seems like a decently safe country to visit, it’s crucial not to overlook the potential risks that could disrupt a holiday. From bed […]

  • Destinations
  • Partner Content

The Solomon Islands’ is ‘Kulture-plus’

Be grateful that your experience of 'headhunting' is limited to some random dude reaching out to you on LinkedIn.

Partner Content

by Travel Weekly

Travel Weekly
  • Cruise

Cruise Traveller’s new Scottish Highlands cruise tour package

Australian small ship cruising specialist, Cruise Traveller, offers a 20-night land and sea holiday in the UK aboard the Lord of the Glens. The tiny cruise line’s 52-guest boutique vessel, Lord of the Glens, is purpose-built to explore the intricate waterways and lochs of the Scottish Highlands. It boasts a rich, traditional ambience with polished […]

  • Cruise

Celebrity Xcel’s keel-laying ceremony in France, with 2025 inaugural sail planned

Construction has commenced on Celebrity Cruises’ next ship, Celebrity Xcel, with a keel-laying ceremony at the Chantiers de l’Atlantique shipyard in Saint-Nazaire, France. An Edge Series ship, Celebrity Xcel will set sail in autumn 2025, with several new yet-to-be-revealed offerings. At the ceremony, Jason Liberty, president and CEO of Royal Caribbean Group (RCG), the parent […]

  • Destinations
  • Tour Operators

Globus unveils nine new independent tours for 2025

Coach touring brand Globus has unveiled nine new independent tours for 2025, from Bangkok to Bali and Abu Dhabi to Nepal. “With Globus Independent tours, our guests are free to enjoy the many benefits of touring, untethered and unscheduled,” APAC head of marketing, Globus family of brands (GFOB), Chris Fundell said. “Providing hand-picked hotel accommodations, […]

  • Hotels

Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group opens Mandarin Oriental Mayfair

The Mandarin Oriental has opened a second property in London, the Mandarin Oriental Mayfair, in the heart of historic Hanover Square. Designed by internationally renowned Rogers Stirk Harbour and Partners, the hotel is the first new build in Mayfair in over a decade. Bringing a modern architectural approach to one of London’s most storied squares, […]