‘Tis the season for office Christmas functions; an opportunity for employers and employees to mark the end of another year with some form of organised frivolity. 26 of TravelManagers’ Western Australian personal travel managers (PTMs) found a unique way to celebrate the successes of 2015 by concluding their quarterly state meeting in Perth with an overnight cruise on P&O’s newly-launched Pacific Eden vessel.
The cruise was billed as the ship’s shakedown cruise, an event which generally takes place on newly-launched vessels and aims to test both the ship and the service crew before it enters regular service.
Alison Banks is TravelManagers’ business partnership manager for Western Australia, and was on board when they departed from Fremantle for their overnight “cruise to nowhere”.
“The ship was open for boarding from noon on Saturday and departed that afternoon, returning to Fremantle first thing Sunday morning,” she explains. “There were other travel agents from other parts of Australia on board as well, so our group created quite a buzz.”
Banks says one of the many highlights of the cruise was the “Bianco” (or white) –themed party held on the Saturday night.
“We decided to reinterpret the white dress code by showing up dressed in black, but with white gloves and feather boas, plus reindeer antlers for an extra, festive touch! Everyone looked amazing and made a huge visual impact amidst the sea of white.”
Michelle Edmead, who is TravelManagers’ representative for Roleystone, was on board for the cruise. She describes the Pacific Eden showcase as “truly a one-of-a-kind event.”
“We were thoroughly spoilt and had the privilege to experience and see every inch of their newest star of the fleet! But the thing that topped off this experience was the amazing WA TravelManagers crew that always make every event a standout!”
Banks says she was highly impressed by how well the event was run by P&O, with all agents receiving an agent welcome pack in their cabins on arrival, complete with instructions for a self-guided ship inspection. By depositing tokens at set checkpoints throughout the ship, they were eligible to enter a draw for some impressive prizes.
“This was a great fun and interactive way to get everyone around the ship to see all that it has to offer! One of our PTMS, Melissa Rowley, was lucky enough to take out the second prize: a three-night cruise from Fremantle to Margaret River.”
Rowley, who is representative for Byford and a relative newcomer to TravelManagers, says the cruise was a great opportunity to get to know her colleagues better.
“It was an excellent event! We have such an amazing group of colleagues but it was great to get to know them in a more informal environment, starting with the fabulous Sail Away party on our first night aboard.”
This sentiment is mirrored by Banks, who says the entire group was mightily impressed with the standard of P&O’s newest ship in Australian waters.
“Our PTMs work independently in partnership with TravelManagers Australia, so we cherish the opportunities for us to all come together at gatherings like our half yearly State Meetings and National Conference. This event was a great way to round off the year in style, and the generosity shown to us all by P&O was absolutely amazing.”
She adds that the chance to indulge in plenty of good food and wine was offset by plenty of exercise on the dance floor.
“I really must express our sincere gratitude to P&O, their Sales Team and the crew of Pacific Eden for hosting us on this incredible overnight experience.”
For more information or to speak to someone confidentially about TravelManagers please contact Suzanne Laister on 1800 019 599.