Brief: Having enjoyed holidays in the Caribbean, a couple are attracted by Bermuda and its short flight times. They would like a week on the island in March or April in a hotel with a good beach and a golf course.
34 Catherine Street
This agent was friendly and polite but did very little to try to sell me a holiday. Her knowledge of Bermuda was vague – she knew little beyond the climate and the fact British Airways flew there.
She didn’t give me any information about hotels or resorts, leaving me to make my own choice from the out-of-date Prestige Holidays brochure she gave me, which didn’t have any prices for 2011. She did try to ring the operator to make further enquiries but she couldn’t get a reply.
I felt she could have searched on her system for more details, or at least taken my contact details and offered to follow up my request when she had time to do some more research.
11-13 Minster Street
This agent was keen to visit the island herself and was enthusiastic about selling me a holiday, but didn’t go into as much detail as I wanted.
She recommended Kuoni and we looked at Grotto Bay, Cambridge Beaches and the Hamilton Princess, with prices ranging from £2,800 for the first and £5,000 for the last.
She advised me that the hotels were usually sold on a room-only or half-board basis, but called the operator to get an idea of all-inclusive prices, however these prices were approximate and only given verbally.
She was friendly but didn’t offer me as much information as I wanted on the hotels, and didn’t take my details to follow up my enquiry.
11 Old George Mall
It’s such a shame this visit was soured by a very long wait for service – a different agent to the one who served me was having a loud non-work-related chat and I was left standing around for eight minutes.
When I was helped by a different agent, she was thorough and engaging. She provided me with three options with Kuoni, offering Grotto Bay from £2,500, Fairmont Southampton from £3,000 and Cambridge Beaches from £4,000.
Unfortunately, some of her online systems were down so she couldn’t compare with other operators on price, so she took my details and offered to follow up, which she did.
18 Queen Street
This agent covered most aspects of my holiday requirements thoroughly and was knowledgeable about the island and keen to research what she didn’t know. After a few calls, she discovered a number of operators no longer offered Bermuda.
She also made calls to enquire about flights, offers and upgrades. She concentrated on the Cambridge Beaches Resort, offering it to me through both Kuoni and North America Travel Service with different price options for economy and premium economy flights, ranging from £3,872 up to £4,900.
She took my details and followed up with prices later the same day. I would have liked to have been offered an alternative hotel but the agent concentrated on getting me a good price for one of the best hotels on the island.
Winning agent: Amy Nelson, travel consultant
“I’ve been working at Thomas Cook for three years and knew Bermuda was one of those exotic islands in the Atlantic that not many companies feature, but luckily Gazetteers.com came to the rescue.”
Tips: Selling Bermuda
- On its own in the middle of the Atlantic, Bermuda is six-and-a-half hours from London and is surrounded by a 200-square-mile coral reef plateau. It’s known for its pink sand beaches and year-round sunshine.
- The island is famous for its peaceful atmosphere, picturesque historic sights and touches of quaint English tradition. However, there’s plenty for more adventurous visitors.
- Hotels are of a high quality. Elbow Beach, Tucker’s Point, the Fairmont Southampton and The Reefs have all been renovated this year. Operators such as Prestige Holidays, Kuoni, Elegant Resorts and Classic Collection feature the island.
- There are three government-run golf clubs on Bermuda, while hotels including the Fairmont Southampton, the Belmont Hills and Tucker’s Point have courses.
- For more on Bermuda, see page 45 or subscribe to Gazetteers.com
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