Winners of this year’s Travel Weekly Globe Travel Awards have thanked the trade for their support.
Kuoni scooped two awards, Best Long-Haul Operator and Best Luxury Operator. UK managing director Derek Jones said winning both awards was a credit to the operator’s team and the trade.
“We’d like to thank the trade first and foremost. We are delighted the trade has recognised our continuing support and we have recommitted ourselves to support the trade in 2016,” he said.
Jones also used the win to pay tribute to head of trade sales, Amanda Darrington, who has announced she is to leave the operator in March. He added: “This award is a fitting farewell to Amanda and
I want to thank her for all her hard work with the trade and wish her all the very best in the future.”
Another double winner was Emirates, which scooped the Best Long-Haul Airline and Best Premium Airline Service accolades.
Laurie Berryman, UK vice-president, said: “We’re absolutely delighted. These awards reaffirm our faith in the trade, who recognise that we have invested in the trade and the level of service we offer.
“We fly from six UK airports via Dubai to 140 destinations worldwide. We also operate 10 Airbus A380s a day from Heathrow, Gatwick, Manchester and now Birmingham.”
Attraction World group sales and marketing director Tony Seaman hailed the firm’s awards as his “high point of the year”.
Having scooped a triple win of Best Add-ons Provider, Best Trade Sales Team and Best Trade-Friendly Brand, Seaman added: “It just shows how much agents support us.
“For Attraction World, the whole point of our business is to sell through travel agents so we do our best to work closely with them, and they will be part of our strategy going forward. We haven’t got a business without travel agents.”
Wendy Wu Tours managing director Laurence Hicks collected the company’s award for Best Long-Haul Specialist Operator. “We always remain very, very confident that the trade will perform for us. We provide as much support to agents as we can to sell our products. This is hopefully their way of saying thank you so I’d like to say thank you back to them.”
Janette Bell, commercial director of P&O Ferries, winner of Best Ferry Company, said: “In what has been a massively challenging year operationally I’m delighted everyone at P&O Cruises has been able to give our renowned customer service and get everyone away on their holidays.
“Congratulations to the whole team. I would like to thank everybody that has been involved in a great evening.”
Jo Rzymowska, managing director of Celebrity Cruises which won Best Premium Cruise Company, was delighted about a seventh consecutive award win.
“It’s amazing to be in a situation, particularly when we have not got any ship launches. We continue to work with the trade and they know how good Celebrity is from the point of view of affluent customers.
“Whatever we do we make sure we work with the agency community. It’s all about making sure they continue to understand what the brand is all about.”
Lisa McAuley, commercial director of Silversea, who won Best Luxury Cruise Line, said: “This represents the crème de la crème of the travel industry so to win this award means we are at the top of our game. This is the 10th year we have won this but there is always a nervousness because the luxury market is hyper-competitive.
“This endorses the fact that the team and service on board excels. The people who serve on board our ships are the differentiator. Without them we are just another product.”
Paul Bunce, head of market development at Best All Inclusive Resort Operator winner Riu Hotels and Resorts, said: “It’s amazing, a massive endorsement. Everything we do os about our customers but it’s also about those people who bring those customers to us and that’s the trade.
“We’re absolutely thrilled that the trade has voted us once again as winner of this award. All we can say is thank you in what has been a challenging year.”
Stuart Leven, managing director of Royal Caribbean International, praised the trade for their support in 2015 as he picked up the gong for Best Mainstream Cruise Line. He said: “It’s the 10th time we’ve won this award, but every year it is so special and never taken for granted.
“The support we get from our trade partners is incredible. I put the fact that we’ve won this for 10 consecutive years down to the amazing partnerships we have with our agents. These partnerships get stronger and stronger and we can wait for what’s in store this year. 2016 is going to be special.”
Richard Twynam, Azamara Club Cruises managing director, said: “I’ve been coming to this event for 20 years, and this is the best moment of my career. I put it all down to the fact that I have an amazing team who have built up incredible relationships with our trade partners.”
Karl Thompson, managing director UK & Europe of Sandals, said: “This is amazing. To win this so many years in a row is incredible. The trade gives us so much support and we are so grateful for that. We have a lot more developments coming in 2016 and it’s going to be a fun year!”
Titan Travel took home the award for Best Mainstream Touring Company. Commercial director, Andy Squirrell, said: “I’m delighted. Our team has done a terrific job engaging with the trade and they’ve really responded to it.”
Thomson Airways was crowned the Best Short-Haul Airline. Marketing and customer director Jeremy Ellis said: “Thomson Airways has revolutionised travel with our new 787 Dreamliner. The quality that we offer people going on holiday is second to none.
“This award is down to our fantastic staff and product we offer and I’m delighted to win.”
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