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CARIBBEAN L


MYSTERY SHOPPER WIN MY BOOKING


KENDAL, CUMBRIA


WANTED: A honeymoon couple are looking for a week or two in a hotel on a less-frequented Caribbean island. BUDGET: £4,000-£5,000


WINNING AGENT


SENIOR SALES CONSULTANT DAWN COTTAM


‘ VERDICT


Gates Travel offered two good quotes and showed good destination knowledge, while the multiples struggled on price and knowledge.


I’ve been in travel for over 25 years,


both in the UK and Australia. I love the fact that every day is different and the job is so diverse.


Gates Travel 9 LIBRARY ROAD


The shop was well laid out, with informative window displays. The brochure racks were excellent but


mostly featured expensive operators. An agent was on the phone but gestured for to me to take a seat, then greeted me when she was free. She said certain islands were pricier, told me a week


would be enough on a quiet island and recommended going all-inclusive. I


was given two quotes based on Jetset flights from Gatwick: £3,737 for the


Kalinago Beach Resort in Grenada and £4,430 for the Coco Reef Resort & Spa in Tobago. The agent was warm, helpful and knowledgeable. She gave me her undivided attention, but I would have liked to have had a view of her screen.


89% THIS WEEK’S WINNER


SCORING SYSTEM


10% Appearance/first impressions


25% Customer service


25% Advice and product knowledge


25% Holiday details 15% Overall experience


The top-scoring agent each month will win the use of a car for 10 days


The winning agent must be at least 25, for insurance reasons. Winners under 25 will win a week’s all-inclusive holiday at an Elite Islands Resorts property. The prize is non-transferable and the car must be driven only by the winning agent. The winner must not have any serious driving convictions. Elite Island Resorts will endeavour to supply the car to the agency but reserves the right to request the winning agent to collect and return the car from Essex or a central location.


49% Tui 5A HIGHGATE This store didn’t entice me in, and the


brochure displays weren’t great. When an agent eventually greeted me, they were chewing gum. They insisted on emailing me quotes after my visit: £4,201 to Antigua (which is fairly mainstream) and £4,797 to Mauritius (which isn’t in the Caribbean). Two days later, I was sent quotes for Sandals Grenada (£6,974)


and for a property in Druif Beach, Aruba (£7,516). The agent missed the brief.


35%


Thomas Cook 49-51 STRICKLANDGATE


There was nowhere to sit and wait. I was served by an agent who then passed me on to another. The second agent was friendly, but was new and out of their depth, and didn’t receive any support


from colleagues. The agent called Kuoni and I was given a quote for £11,400 –


way over my budget. I took the Kuoni brochure and found some suitable


options. I was then quoted £4,430 for a week in St Kitts and £5,166 for Aruba.


42 travelweekly.co.uk 30 August 2018


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