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FRESH FACES: Adventure World’s Head of Sales Andy Kirkman


Adventure World’s new head of sales ANDY KIRKMAN is passionate about conservation, so much so he wrote his university thesis on environmental management in the hotel sector. It’s also why he joined AW.

 

Where have you just been?

I travelled to Europe for winter in January to tick off some bucket list items - Northern Lights (check!), dog-sledding (check!)— and to explore the Baltic States of Estonia, Latvia and Czech Republic independently. Incredible places and each so, so different!

 

Where are you going next?

Vietnam - to delve deep into the cultural side of the northern parts of the country with time in Hanoi, an overnight cruise through Ha Long Bay and then a trip up into the Highlands of Sapa. 

 

Besides your passport, what’s one thing you always take with you on your travels? 

My Bose noise-cancelling headphones. Always!

 

Why did you join Adventure World? 

I’ve always had a passion for culture and wildlife-focused travel, and making sure sustainability and conservation principles were always practiced by those who preached, before I would travel with them.

Right back to my student days, I wanted to move into environmental conservation and even wrote my undergrad dissertation/thesis on environmental management systems in large chain hotels and their impact on the environment.

After working for a WA travel agency, followed by a WA tour operator working within the Rottnest Island Marine Sanctuary Zone and having to embrace sustainability principles every day, an opportunity arose to join the Adventure World sales team - a friend told me about this ‘perfect role’.

I honestly didn’t know too much about Adventure World prior to that, but once I learned of their proud focus on ‘Culture & Heritage’ and ‘Wildlife & Wilderness’ as well as the commitments and strong partnerships they held with the likes of World Animal Protection, World Wildlife Fund and The TreadrightFoundation for example, I knew that joining Adventure World was ultimately the right move!

And now, here we are five years later and about to take the next step in my AW journey as I follow the big city lights of Sydney to become the brand’s Head of Sales!

 

What’s the main thing people should know about the company?

I’ve always proudly promoted our reservations team— our destination specialists, travel designers, tailor-made experts - whatever title best describes the amazing work that this team does!

That title comes from the in-depth destination knowledge that each member of the team has in relation to their region.

When you call AW with an Africa enquiry, you won’t speak to a ‘generic’ reservations team member, who on the last call was just selling Canada; you’ll speak to one of our Africa experts, who can assist with the tiniest of tailor-made details for your client’s next trip because they only sell Africa!

Our South America team will recommend the tastiest Asado restaurant in El Calafate. The USA team will customise a self-drive itinerary, so your clients don’t miss any of the best sights according to their interestsYou’ll speak to individual destination specialists who live, eat, breathe (and are quite often from or have lived in) the regions they sell!  

 

What’s your top travel tip? 

Being a foodie, I eat my way through a country! So, my top tip is to try anything that you’re brave enough to try! I’m a big fan of street food as you’ll often find some of the most delicious treats there – and it’s what the locals know how to make best!

 


Written by: ANDY KIRKMAN as told to TRAVELTALK
Published: 18 June 2019


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