With a camera always handy, find out why last year’s Avis Travel Agent Scholarship winner, Claudia Silk hopes to one day snap travel pics with Oprah Winfrey.
What drew you to work in the travel industry?
Since I was young all I wanted to do was travel and see the world. I travelled to London thinking I would be there for one year and ended up staying nearly six years. I loved being able to travel from there all around Europe. When I came back to Australia I decided I wanted a change in career and do something that I loved and that was travel.
What do you like most about your job?
I love the variety, dealing with different clients and different destinations they would like to travel to. I love that I can run a successful business from my home as this gives me the work/life balance that I’ve always wanted.
What’s been the most pivotal moment in your career?
There are a few that I could name but definitely winning the Avis Travel Agent Scholarship would have to be at the top! I was so honoured to win and be recognised for what I consider the most important thing in this industry, customer service.
If you could recommend one thing for a fellow travel worker to undergo, what would it be?
To apply for the Avis Scholarship as it’s a great way of evaluating your own business and the service you provide to your customers. It was an amazing process and I would encourage anyone to just go for it.
Who do you admire and see as a role model in the travel industry?
Richard Branson. Such an inspiration on what he has created today and continues to expand. Not only is he a brilliant entrepreneur but also a humanitarian working to also give back to the community.
What destinations are on your travel bucket list?
Africa, Norwegian Fjords, Canada, Vietnam, Korea, Russia, Japan and so many more!!
What’s a memorable travel experience you’ve had (good or bad)?
Had an amazing weekend in Lucerne, Switzerland. I was travelling with a group of friends and it was in the middle of summer and a gorgeous sunny day so we decided to take a couple of boats out on Lake Lucerne. The water looked so inviting that a few of us decided to dive in for a dip, the water was freezing!! I decided it was too cold to stay in the water so I asked the others to put the ladder down and then realised our boat was one of the few that didn’t have its ladder onboard! It was not a pretty sight my husband having to try and push me up on the side of the boat as it was too high to pull myself up, all my friends on the boat were laughing so hard they couldn’t help! Such a brilliant weekend and plenty of laughs at my expense.
What are three things you must always take with you when you travel?
Definitely my camera to make sure I capture the memories, electricity adaptors and enough clean underwear!!
Name someone famous you’d like to travel with and where you’d like to take them.
I would like to travel with Oprah Winfrey and I would take her around Australia, I don’t think she saw enough while she was here.