Monday, 5 July 2010
Ballymena Travel Agent wins ACE Ambassador of the Year Award 2010
Top performing Ballymena travel agent, Brendan O’Connor of Travelmax has been awarded status as an ACE Ambassador by the world’s leading cruise lines. The award was made at a glittering ceremony in front of hundreds of travel agents at the annual conference of the Association of Cruise Experts in Southampton. The accreditation is only bestowed on those travel agents whose knowledge of cruise ships has reached the very highest level.
Brendan was delighted with the recognition. He said “I am passionate about the cruise industry and always seeking to expand my knowledge about cruise lines, new ships, routes, the latest news and improved facilities.”
Most travel agents have experienced cruising first hand, but for Brendan it was his job too. His love of cruising started many years ago when he worked for Cunard aboard the QEII after which he spent three years working with leading cruise line Royal Caribbean International.
While the award is a great personal honour for Brendan he is determined to help to raise the profile of cruising within Northern Ireland. He said “During my time in the travel industry I have seen the cruise sector grow from strength to strength locally and there is a steadily growing core of regular customers who now take a cruise as their main holiday of choice. While some people jet off to join a ship in the Caribbean, with cruise ships regularly calling into Belfast, Cork and Dublin the opportunity to board a ship locally has never been better.”
Recognising Brendan’s achievement, Flo Powell, Director of the Association of Cruise Experts said “ACE Ambassador Agents are those that have achieved the pinnacle of cruise expertise, with advanced knowledge and experience gained through visits to ships and in-depth destination training. It is the highest level of recognition we ever give to a travel agent.”
Brendan is shown receiving his award at the 2010 ACE Cruise Convention in Southampton – with Debbee Dale of training specialists Debbee Dale Development and Flo Powell, Director of ACE.
The Association of Cruise Experts (ACE) is supported by 36 leading cruise lines and gives three different levels of recognition to travel agents depending on their product knowledge. The top level of achievement is that of an ACE Ambassador. Brendan was the only travel specialist to receive this top accolade at this year’s ACE Conference.
Travelmax is an independent travel agent based in the Ballymena Business Centre in
Fenaghy Road in Galgorm. With 25 years of valuable experience the company specialises in finding exactly the right holiday or flight to suit customers’ needs.
Travelmax is a member of the Travel Trust Association which provides complete financial protection for money paid for travel arrangements. In addition to its shop, Travelmax also operates three travel websites: travelmax.co.uk, cruiseholidaysdirect.com and 12ski.co.uk.