Mystery shopper: A couple’s Thai beach break

Location: Oswestry, Shropshire
Wanted: A couple would like to spend two weeks in Thailand next February,staying in a beach destination in a hotel with good facilities.
Budget: £4,500.

Polka Dot Travel23 Bailey Street98%

I was greeted straight away by an agent who asked lots of questions to find out what kind of holiday I wanted, and she gave me some useful information.She spoke confidently and with such enthusiasm about the destination and activities on offer that it made mewant to go ahead and book.

I was recommended a £3,102 trip with Gold Medal, staying at the Centara Grand Beach Resort, Phuket, on a bed-and-breakfast basis. I was given the option of a Dubai stopover and asked whether I wanted to upgrade to business class. The agent took my details and asked if I’d like to book, and if she could call me the next day. She also gave me her business card. Overall this was an excellent experience.

Hays Travel
20 Cross Street, 94%

After waiting five minutes, I spoke to an upbeat and relaxed agent who suggested a £3,838 Premier Holidays break at the Rembrandt Hotel in Bangkok and Centara Villas Phuket, on a bed-and-breakfast basis.

She asked lots of questions and recommended activities. Insurance and transfers were mentioned. She said it might take a while for the quote to come by phone and invited me to return or offered to call me, which I appreciated. We exchanged details.

Liberty Travel
25 Cross Street, 66%

I was dealt with straight away and asked lots of questions, but the agent was not overly enthusiastic and didn’t givemuch detail about what to expect from Thailand. I was recommended a £4,165 Thomson holiday, with stays at the Marriott Bangkok and Marriott Khao Lak.

No upgrades were mentioned. I was given a business card and asked to return when I had read the brochures. I would have liked to have been given more information to bring the destination to life.

Winning agent: Jody Tinsley-Pugh, Assistant manager

Every customer is different and making sure I find them the right holiday is important; I want them to have an amazing time and book with me again. I always give them a welcome-back call – I like to think I’m part of their journey from when they enter the shop to when they return.


All of the agents came up with good recommendations within budget, but the winning agent offered upgrades and was particularly enthusiastic.

Elite resorts caribbean

Top-scoring agent each month will win use of a Mercedes SLK for 10 days

The winning agent must be at least 25, for insurance reasons. Any agent who is under 25 will win a week’s all-inclusive holiday at an Elite Islands Resorts property. The prize is non-transferable and the car must be driven only by the winning agent.

The winner must not have any serious driving convictions. The winners will be informed by Travel Weekly.

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