Kuoni Diploma finalists visited Cape Town, South Africa, to find out who would be named Worldwide Consultant and Advanced Worldwide Consultant of the Year 2007.

Top-scoring agents headed to Cape Town, South Africa, to celebrate their achievements, learn more about the destination, and compete to become consultant of the year.

Finalists for the Kuoni Diploma 2007 in Cape Town, South Africa

The five-day educational consisted of a series of exams and visits to Cape Town’s top tourist attractions: a tour of the wine estates; a visit to see penguins at Boulders Beach and a cheetah outreach project; a tour of Cape Town; a trip up Table Mountain and a tour of the Cape Peninsula.

“We try to keep it fun and informal up until agents sit the final exam,” said agency sales senior co-ordinator Janet Trayler.

Kuoni Worldwide Consultant of the Year 2007

Mark Haughton, director, Escape Worldwide, LondonMark Haughton, director, Escape Worldwide, London

Mark, 34, set up Escape Worldwide more than five years ago with his partner and sister. Before setting up the agency, he worked for tour operators including Somak. The long-haul specialist agency is based in Stratford, London.

“The diploma is ideal for me because we only sell long haul. The course isn’t just about Kuoni, it is about travel in general and I try to do it every year to keep up to date.

“There were some modules that I didn’t know much about, for example this year there were questions on Italy and Switzerland. I didn’t know much about the Caribbean, so that section was tough too. However, the Far East sections were right up my street. I will do it again next year and might do the advanced diploma, depending on the destinations it covers.”

Kuoni Advanced Worldwide Consultant of the Year 2007

Amanda Leech, personal travel adviser, Travel By AJAmanda Leech, personal travel adviser, Travel By AJ

Until August Amanda Leech and her husband were running a retail shop called Global Travel Ivybridge in Devon. But three months ago, 37-year-old Amanda became a homeworker.

“This is the second year I’ve done the advanced diploma. I did it in Dubai last year. It is such a challenge, but you can really get your teeth into it and take on an interesting subject.

“I didn’t know a great deal about South Africa, but this has really broadened my knowledge. Not only do you learn about the areas and hotels, but you learn about other subjects such as weddings or diving.

“The course was time-consuming, but I kept focused and I knew going out with Kuoni would make it worth it – they put together some fantastic opportunities for us.”

Kuoni diploma facts and figures

  • About 2,500 agents started the standard diploma, 505 started the advanced diploma
  • The standard diploma consists of 15 online modules, each containing 30 questions
  • This year the advanced diploma consisted of the South Africa Fundi Expert Course, followed by a quiz on Kuoni’s Africa and Worldwide brochures and a client profiling and itinerary building project
  • To go on the trip, candidates taking the standard diploma had to score a pass mark of 96% or above – 40 agents achieved this Candidates taking the advanced diploma had to gain a pass mark of 92% or more to go – 15 got that mark and 10 made it on the trip
  • Standard diploma agents competed to win Worldwide Consultant of the Year 2007 during the trip. Advanced diploma agents competed for Advanced Worldwide Consultant of the Year 2007