Industry award success for travel apprentice

A young travel agent who completed his travel services apprenticeship with Performance Through People has scooped two national awards at a glittering ceremony in London.

Oliver Maye, who works at Co-operative Travel in Hawks Green, Cannock, was named High Street Agent of the Year as well as Young Travel Agent of the Year in the annual awards held by industry bible the Travel Trade Gazette. The 20-year-old recently completed his NVQ Levels 2 and 3 in Travel Services with Performance Through People and his studying, along with his winning customer service skills, helped him steal the awards.

Oliver, who lives in Cannock, said: “My regional manager emailed a profile about me to the judges and included the studying I’ve done with Performance Through People. I’ve also had a good year for sales and I had 100% positive feedback from my customers. I found out I had been shortlisted for the awards last year and I was nervous about going to the ceremony, which was in London. I went with one of my colleagues Annabelle Nichols, who is a travel advisor, and my regional manager Louise Devall who put me forward for the awards. When I won the first award I was chuffed and when I won the second it was amazing, I couldn’t believe it.”

The ceremony was held in front of an audience of 750 industry figures, at The Lyceum Theatre in London’s West End, following a pre-show gathering at The Savoy Hotel. Oliver who went to school at Shire Oak Academy, was presented with the prestigious trophies by awards co-host and comedian Rob Brydon. Almost 100 top travel agents from the UK and Ireland were invited to enter various agent categories for this year’s TTG Travel Awards, completing written submissions that were then judged by a panel of industry leaders.

Oliver said he enjoys how diverse his job is. “I can be selling a standard holiday to Spain one minute and then putting together an around the world holiday the next,” he said. “I love packaging a big holiday together and meeting new people, although I do have the same people come back to me because they are pleased with the service they have received.”

Oliver has been with Co-operative Travel for three years and studied a diverse range of subjects as part of his apprenticeship, from dealing with foreign exchange to geography. “It was also good to recap over important things like money laundering laws,” said Oliver. “One of the best parts of my studying is that I didn’t need to take time away from work to go to college – my tutor from Performance Through People came to see me at work, set me my assignments, marked my work and discussed with me what I needed to do for next time. It was challenging but enjoyable.”

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