Flight Centre recognised for innovation, agents take on Sri Lanka, Russia and Cambodia + MORE – Travel Weekly

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This Agent Wrap comes with a warning for those who suffer from acute FOMO when they see agents living it up on famils. Brace yourselves – they’ve been just about everywhere this week.

ANZ and FCM recognised for duty of care innovation 

The alliance between the Australian and New Zealand Banking Group Limited (ANZ), FCM Travel Solutions and International SOS has been lauded for using innovative strategies to enhance duty of care for ANZ’s business travellers.

Representatives from the three organisations took to the stage last week in Shanghai to accept an award for ‘Innovation’ in the International SOS Foundation’s Global Duty of Care Awards.

ANZ’s corporate travel program is managed in partnership with corporate travel management company FCM Travel Solutions and International SOS – a specialist in medical travel and security services.

ANZ’s work to advocate and enhance duty of care for business travellers, as part of the unique tripartite relationship with FCM and International SOS, is a first for the Australian banking sector.

Santa Monica comes to Sydney with exclusive agent event

25 agents celebrated the latest edition of Excite Edit ‘A Local’s Guide to Santa Monica’ with a party at the pier on Wednesday 2 October.

Pier One Sydney Harbour, Walsh Bay transported SaMo’s signature Pacific Coast style to the Harbour City’s own pier – with an exclusive agent event hosted by Excite Holidays and Santa Monica Travel & Tourism (SMTT).

Amongst a sunny setting that wouldn’t have looked out of place in LA’s Beach City, 25 of Excite Holidays’ top-selling agents embraced the event’s So-Cal beach-fit theme with a 45-minute Zumba session.

After working up a sweat, agents were treated to a feast of clean eats that embraced Santa Monica’s fresh food and fitness focus – including antipasto, pulled beef tacos and a seafood station with fresh prawns and oysters.

Thirsts were quenched with fresh JuicedLife cold press juices and blend-your-own-smoothies stops.

The evening ended as the sun, sand and surf vibes gave way to sunset cocktails – and DJ Siila spinning classic Cali tracks to get agents in touch with their inner ‘California Gurl’ (or Boy)!

Australian agents dine with Sri Lankan Tourism Promotion Bureau staff at mega famil farewell dinner

On Saturday 12 October the Sri Lankan Tourism Promotion Bureau joined 45 top-selling agents from Australia for the farewell dinner of the first-ever Sri Lankan mega famil hosted by The Bunnik Group.,

Led by Dennis and Marion Bunnik, the ten-day trip explored the fascinating culture, history, culinary scene and lush landscapes of Sri Lanka – recently announced as Lonely Planet’s top-ranked country for travel.

MTA agents take on Cambodia and Russia

MTA – Mobile Travel Agents’ Belinda Miller rooted to the spot while immersing herself in 800 years of Cambodian culture at the Ta Prohm Temple in Siem Reap.

Miller visited the UNESCO World Heritage-listed site as part of a recent EXO Travel Study Tour combining Cambodia with Laos.

Her 13-day itinerary included Luang Prabang, Pakse, the Bolaven Plateau, the 4000 Islands, Stung Treng and Phnom Penh.

Meanwhile, MTA’s Chris Hopton visited historic Kizhi Island, the site of one of Russia’s biggest open-air museums famed for its collection of 16th-century wooden buildings.

Hopton visited the island as part of a 13-day Viking River Cruises’ study tour program travelling from Moscow on board Viking Truvor via the Volga and Niva Rivers through to St Petersburg on the Baltic Seaboard.

Travel agents celebrate flying to more fun in the Philippines

Winning Aussie travel agents are set to fly to the Philippines, thanks to Cebu Pacific and the Philippine Department of Tourism.

Travel agents John Pual Taberdo and Tina Millington from Travel Counsellors, Jodi Woolf from STA Travel, Victoria Buckley from Jayes Travel, Mark Haranda from Travel Talk Magazine and Christine Anton from Cruise in Style all won flights and accommodation to some amazing islands in the Philippines from attending the Philippine Business Mission Roadshows, and winning the tourism boards Trivia competition.

The roadshows took place in Sydney’s Sheraton Grand and Melbourne’s Crown Events and Conferences, highlighting the latest developments in Philippine tourism, including destinations and products, services and travel packages.

At the event, travel agents had the opportunity to meet with Philippine tour operators and airlines, like Cebu Pacific, the country’s leading low-cost carrier.

Billie Goat boss to shines light on travel agent wellbeing

The pressures of running a travel agency can be immense and it’s important that owners take care of themselves and their team, which is why Travellers Choice invited one of Australia’s leading advocates for small business wellbeing – and one of the country’s most successful entrepreneurs – to address its annual conference in Adelaide next month.

Leanne Faulkner founded Australian skincare business Billie Goat Soap from her kitchen table back in 2005 after exploring natural remedies for her son’s eczema. Since then the venture has grown into a multimillion-dollar international company, along the way picking up the prestigious NSW Business Chamber President’s Prize for Business of the Year and being named Myer’s Supplier of the Year in General Cosmetics.

Since gaining personal insights into the challenges small business owners face, Faulkner has become recognised as a thought leader in terms of small business mental health and has consulted on the issue with organisations such as Beyond Blue and the Australian Taxation Office.

Into the west for Personal TravelManagers’ Japan famil

The city of Niigata is located on the west coast of Japan’s largest island, Honshu. Famous for its local produce, which includes rice, sake, seafood and tulips, it also serves as a gateway to the nearby island of Sado.

Personal travel manager (PTM), Sue Kuti, was one of seven Australia-based travel advisors to take part in a recent famil to this fascinating region of Japan. The five-night itinerary was hosted by Japan Airlines’ Sydney-based sales supervisor, Norie Sugisaki, and organised by the Niigata government in conjunction with the Japan National Tourist Office and Japan Airlines.

Travel Associates opens fifth store in ACT

Premium leisure brand, Travel Associates, has opened its fifth store in the ACT with Jamison Plaza Travel Associates.

The Travel Associates brand has experienced rapid growth in its number of offices around the country, now operating 95 businesses owned by Flight Centre Travel Group and an additional 22 businesses operated by 5 franchise owners.

The Jamison Plaza Travel Associates team is headed up by manager Thea Bainbridge, who has also clocked up 14 years in the industry. The Jamison team has a combined 45-plus years’ experience travelling and living across the globe.

Each of the team members has her own area of expertise including river cruising, rail journeys, small group and expedition travel, solo travel, food and wine tours, and weddings and honeymoons.

Kieran Roberts is franchise owner of Gungahlin Travel Associates since 2017 and the driving force behind Jamison Plaza Travel Associates.

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