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PPA Independent Publishing Company of the Year 2019

The mystery shopper visited two travel agencies in Marlow, Buckinghamshire, and requested a three-night city break to Copenhagen for two female friends in their 30s, travelling in May 2017 with a budget of £1,500.

They then made two searches using the term ‘Copenhagen city break’.

The winner

The winner

Thomas Cook
28 High Street


Score: 80%

Mystery Shopper said:
The window displays were attractive, with eye-catching offers. I browsed the neatly arranged brochures as I waited for a consultant. When I was asked if I needed help, I spoke to a smartly dressed consultant who went to get a relevant brochure. I felt welcome and the consultant was friendly and attentive. They asked some detailed questions about my holiday. The consultant conducted a thorough search and then made two holiday suggestions, explaining the benefits of each. The consultant was excellent at matching my requirements to a holiday. They suggested choosing the hotel with a better TripAdvisor rating, which I did. I was offered a SuperBreak package for £1,159. Each section of the holiday package was explained in detail and I felt very valued as a potential customer. The consultant took my details and printed off a quote. They said they would call at a time and date that suited me, to make the booking.

Meet the consultant

Rachel Byne

Sales consultant

Thomas Cook


How long in travel?
Three years. This is my first job in travel after college.

Where is selling well at the moment?
Spain and Florida.

Tips for selling Copenhagen?
It’s more of a short break destination so I’d recommend a trip of between three and five days to see the main sights.

Bucket list destination?
The Maldives!

Biggest booking?
A twin centre trip to Dubai and the Maldives, worth £25,000.

Next holiday?
I’m hopefully going back to Mexico this year, to Playa del Carmen.

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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TTG - Travel Trade Gazette
For Smarter, Better, Fairer Travel
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