Travel Counsellor Sarah McCarthy has won the top award for ‘Best Travel Counsellor’ for the ninth year in a row at the annual Travel Counsellors conference.

Sarah also won an award for most sales through Phenix, the company’s state-of-the-art in-house booking system, at Friday night’s (20 April) glitzy black-tie ceremony in Powerscourt Hotel, Wicklow.

Recognising the exceptional work of Travel Counsellors’ network of franchisees, the prestigious gala awards closed the travel company’s renowned two-day annual conference. Over 150 travel professionals were in attendance. The event sponsors included G Adventures, Cathay Pacific Airlines, Turkish Airlines and Travelport.

Speaking on her win, Cork-based Sarah said: “What an honour it is to receive Best Travel Counsellor for the ninth year in a row. Twelve years ago I became a Travel Counsellor, and it’s a job I am so passionate about. I have an incredibly rewarding career where I can build and grow my own business while still having the support from such a dynamic travel company as Travel Counsellors.”

Fellow Cork Travel Counsellor, Mary Foyle won ‘Best DMC’ sales, while Meath travel specialist Sharon Tiernan-Murphy won ‘Most Helpful TravelCounsellor’ as voted by her peers. Limerick native Claudia Lane was awarded ‘Best MyTC’ – Travel Counsellors app which provides users with personalised information about bookings.

Two Dublin Travel Counsellors were awarded for their excellent use of online media for business. Sarah Appleton won ‘Best Travel Blog’ for her account of a recent trip to The Galapagos, while Karen Pugh was awarded for ‘Best Use of Social Media’.

County Clare Travel Counsellor Gearóid Mannion won ‘Best Corporate TC’; while Mayo based Emer McDermott was named ‘Best Newcomer’ and Rachael Higgins, also from Mayo, won ‘Best Business Increase’. Sinéad Lonergan, Westmeath scooped ‘Best Cruise’, and Nadine Farrelly took home an award for ‘Best Margin’.

Travel Counsellors’ ‘Business Partner of the Year’ went to Columbus Tours, the company’s Destination Management Company (DMC) in Sri Lanka.

Commending the travel professionals on their wins, General Manager of Travel Counsellors Ireland, Cathy Burke said: “Every year it is important to celebrate the hard work and commitment of our dedicated travel professionals. The gala awards are a perfect opportunity for such celebration, and I’d like to congratulate the achievements of all of our Travel Counsellors. Each and every one of them have such passion for travel and are always focused on achieving the very best for their customers.”

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