Seller of the week

26 May 2016

Mystery Shopper's seller of the week: Donna Woodthorpe, Spalding Travel

This week we went undercover in Spalding, Lincolnshire, where our winning seller scored very highly.

Mystery-Shopper Donna Woodthorpe

The mystery shopper visited two travel agencies in Spalding, Lincolnshire and requested a seven-night holiday for six friends in June with a budget of £4,800.


They then made two searches using the term ‘Ibiza clubbing holiday’.

The winner

The winner

Spalding Travel

60 Swan Street


Score 98%


Mystery Shopper said: Both inside and outside the store were clean, tidy and welcoming. I was greeted with smiles by the agents. One offered help, and I had their full attention. The consultant had been to Ibiza and was very enthusiastic and knowledgeable. They put forward a range of holidays, and discussed the positives and negatives of them all, to help narrow down my decision. Their questions were open-ended and they built a good rapport with me. When we settled on a package for £3,288 at Coral Star Hotel, flying from East Midlands, they downloaded the relevant pages from the brochure and provided a full price breakdown. They advised that prices could change and availability was tight. They offered to call all five of my friends to take individual payments. I felt valued as a customer but not pressurised. Later I received a text to say flying from Stansted could save another £300, and advising there were only four rooms left.

Meet the consultant

Meet the consultant

Donna Woodthorpe

Travel consultant

Spalding Travel


How long in travel?
I’ve been in travel for about eight years. I’ve tried other jobs but it always draws me back.

How often do you sell Ibiza?
It’s a common enough enquiry. I’ve done high-end Ibiza and I’ve done budget.

Have you been to Ibiza?
Yes I have – twice.

What do you like about the island?
Everyone goes for the clubbing but you can have a fantastic time having drinks and dinner in a nice restaurant. Ibiza Town is beautiful.

Where have you been recently?
I did a Titan fam trip to India last year. My highlight was Jaipur and the Amber Fort.

Any holiday plans?
My husband and I have booked to go on Norwegian Epic for two weeks, sailing out of Barcelona.

Where is on your bucket list?
Thailand – I want to see Bangkok and the dramatic coastlines.

Your best booking?
Six people to Barbados for £45,000 – they hired a villa at Crystal Cove.

React Surveys explainer / disclaimer

TTG has teamed up with React Surveys to simulate a realistic booking process each week – that means a mystery shopper looking for the best deal from agents and operators on the high street, online, on TV or in newspapers. The Mystery Shopper research is carried out on behalf of TTG by React Surveys,and no further details or information can be disclosed. Researchers take into consideration first impression, sales process, product and budget match and extras offered before giving an unbiased opinion of which channel/company they would have booked with on that occasion. We do not claim that the winner is the best in an area or specialist sector, as we may report on competing travel firms in the future. Please note that the aim of Mystery Shopper is not to criticise individual agents or companies, but to promote good sales technique for the benefit of all in the travel trade.

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