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Avis Annoints The 23rd Winner Of The Avis Travel Agent Scholarship

November 15, 2019 Headline News No Comments Email Email

More than 60 travel industry members and finalists in the prestigious Avis Travel Agent Scholarship gathered at the Park Hyatt in Sydney this week for a Gala dinner and the crowning of the 2019 victor, Melanie Whyte.

Whyte, from Travel Managers in Devonport, Tasmania, a 20 year veteran of the industry was named the winner from five finalists selected from across Australia and New Zealand for demonstrating a consistently high quality of customer service and innovation in her work while keeping sustainability at the heart of her approach.

A finalist for the Scholarship in previous years, Whyte specifically impressed judges with her passion and loyalty to her clients, as well as her proven experience in providing outstanding holiday experiences for families with children who have special needs. Whyte was officially awarded the Avis Scholarship at the dinner following a presentation to the judging panel of industry professionals.

Tom Mooney, Managing Director – Pacific at Avis praised Whyte’s commitment to delivering outstanding, innovative customer service with an industry-leading focus on sustainability.

“The level of excellence Melanie shows with her work has set an industry-wide benchmark for customer service and we’re incredibly proud to recognize her as the winner of the 2019 Avis Scholarship. The focus on sustainability this year has opened our eyes to the breadth of unique talent across Australia and New Zealand, and we’re excited to see the industry continue to innovate with the changing needs of customers.”

Tom Mooney, Melanie Whyte and Jo Patton former winner

Melanie was selected from the five finalists

  • Natalie Morgan, Phil Hoffman Travel
  • Jen Lloyd, Savenio
  • Ben Ogden, CWT
  • Charlotte Chalman, House of Travel NZ

The Avis Travel Agent Scholarship enters its 23rd year of celebrating and rewarding outstanding customer service in the travel industry across Australia and New Zealand.

“The 2019 finalists for the Avis Scholarship showcases those who are continually raising the bar for excellent customer service across the travel industry” Tom Mooney said.

“This year’s focus on sustainability has elevated the range and quality of applications received even further. We are excited to see the continued enthusiasm and high calibre of applicants for this year’s programme and on behalf of the entire organisation I would like to congratulate Melanie and thank all our co-sponsors and we look forward to again hosting these scholarships in 2020.” he said

The Avis Travel Agent Scholarship is designed to be rigorous, transparent and impartial process that explores extraordinary customer service in the travel sector. Individuals are required to answer a series of questions in the most creative way they see fit, highlighting their personal approaches to creative or innovative solutions to customer problems. The scholarship is open to full-time travel agents in Australia and New Zealand.

The Scholarship prize is valued at over $35 000 and includes a range of experiences, comprising international travel to conferences, professional mentoring for 12 month, and training opportunities with organisations such as Cruise Lines International Association Australasia (CLIAA).

  • Melanie will receive two Qantas Business Class airfares to an Asia Pacific location of her choice
  • Attendance at a conference of her choosing within the Asia Pacific, with accommodation and transfers provided
  • Cruise training modules and two Cruise 360 Australasia conference tickets courtesy of CLIAA.
  • Right Path coaching and profiling for 12 months
  • Attendance at a major CAPA event in Australia

One of the reasons this unique program has endured is because it has never wavered from its original objective: to encourage, recognise and reward outstanding customer service.

Thanks to the ongoing commitment and generosity of our sponsors, Scholarship recipients have enjoyed some extraordinary travel and education prizes.

Since its launch in 1996 the Avis Travel Agent Scholarship has evolved into one of the most valuable and respected awards offered to Australian & New Zealand travel professionals.

Written by John Savage

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