Established in 1988, Fred. Olsen Travel is first and foremost a travel agency but also acts as a tour operator, general sales agent, preferred agent and corporate travel provider. We also operate a franchise business, GoCruise&Travel, which has helped well travel professionals to set up their own travel business.
Our staff are our biggest asset and they really make the difference when it comes to selling holidays. We invest in developing their knowledge and expertise by sending them all over the world to experience the products and destinations for themselves, enabling them to have first-hand knowledge when speaking to our customers. Coupled with the passion for travel that our staff have in abundance, this makes our service really hard to beat.
We recruit at all levels to ensure that we have the correct mix of talent and experience. Our excellent apprenticeship scheme enables candidates to train whilst they are working and we have a number of success stories that we’re really proud of. So, whether you’re looking for your first role within the travel sector or you already have some experience under your belt, we’re certain that Fred. Olsen Travel would be a great company for you to join. Why not take a look at our vacancies page to see how you could start your journey with us?
Employees based at our Head Office (Ipswich, Suffolk) you will also benefit from:
We are also enthusiastic to offer our staff educational trips and conferences to enable staff to experience fabulous destinations and resorts. The aim is to then use the knowledge and information in their day to day work, relaying their experiences and knowledge to our fantastic clientele.
I attended the Budapest CLIA Rivercruise conference in March 2022. Even though I am not new to travel, in my past job I never had a lot of experience booking river cruises and felt that attending the conference would help build my confidence and make me more knowledgeable.
From start to finish, it was a packed 3 days of walking around 10 different river cruise ships, learning about all the different types of cabin, what each company offer and what type of client each one would be suited to.
We stayed on 3 different ships over the 3 nights and that gave us a real insight as to what a customer would expect, the service they provide and all about the food!
These conferences are so beneficial, even if you have knowledge of working in the travel industry already, there is always something to learn, expand your knowledge and a great way to meet new people and to network. In FOT, we book so many types of holidays and cruises, you never know what’s going to walk through the door so even if you can inspire someone then that’s always a positive.
My knowledge on Madeira is pretty good, but was keen to take up the opportunity to visit the island again in April 2022 with EasyJet Holidays.
On arrival at Funchal we had a private transfer take us to the Hotel Vidamar. A detailed itinerary had been given before departure and there were a couple of excursions included which I had not seen or considered before. The first was a trip to a vineyard and although not a drinker turned out to be an excellent day. We learnt about the way the grapes were grown and how being closer to the ocean affected the taste. The second half day tour was a walking tour of the old town in Funchal to learn about the different local foods and tastings.
As in most educational trips a few hotel visits are required, but this really helps you gain knowledge for when you come back and you can recommend the right property to the right person. An educational in my eyes is invaluable for learning and knowledge, and is far more beneficial than any online training courses. My bookings for the island have increased again since I returned and I have also obtained a few more travel friends from the trip.
I was very privileged to be invited to take part in a Travelsphere Educational to the Canadian Rockies in May 2022. We visited Banff, Jasper, Lake Louise and Calgary all in 5 nights! As hectic as it was we saw and learnt so much, the Banff gondola, e biking, helicopter trip over Mount Assiniboine glacier, stunning Chateau Lake Louise, the Calgary tower and we also got a glimpse of the infamous Rocky Mountaineer. We were also so lucky to see a variety of wildlife including grizzly and black bears which for me was the highlight. Without the knowledge of the tour leader and driver we could have quite easily missed these special moments.
Back in the office I can now chat to our customers and help them plan their itinerary with confidence with all the knowledge I have acquired. Without this opportunity I would have to rely on tour operators’ recommendations and brochures to plan itineraries. I also have many pictures to show our customers which adds a little personal touch. We are so lucky to work for an organisation that encourages us to participate in these trips and grow our knowledge and business.
I have been working at Fred. Olsen Travel Since August 2022 as the Marketing & Design Apprentice. I really enjoy working here because I have been able to be as creative as I like and I get to work with so many passionate people. My experience so far while working for Fred. Olsen Travel has been really good as I felt so welcomed from the beginning and everyone will do their best to help you if you’re struggling. I have been finding the work I am given is becoming more natural and I’m always learning something new on a daily basis. I’m becoming more and more confident in the work I’m given each day.
I found out about this job on the Government website under the apprenticeship vacancies. I had been looking for an apprenticeship in Marketing & Design for a while and this one fitted perfectly. When applying for the job I found the process simple and easy to understand. This helped me a lot as I didn’t know how the application process worked as this is my first job since leaving college. The whole interview process was really smooth and I didn’t feel uncomfortable while being interviewed. I got the opportunity to stay and see what a workday in the marketing department looked like during my interview. This gave me an insight into what I could expect if I took the job, this definitely made me feel welcomed into the business.
I was fortunate enough to be able to go on my very first conference a month into my job on Virgin Voyages, Lady Valiant Cruise Ship, from Ibiza to Barcelona. It was such a surreal experience and it definitely helped me understand the cruise industry a lot better.
Since joining Fred Olsen Travel I have had a really positive experience. Throughout the recruitment process and my time here so far, I have been made to feel comfortable in my new role and within the team. Everyone is always willing to help and work as a team which makes for a positive and encouraging work environment. I applied for the role of Apprentice Accounts Assistant because I wanted to explore a different career where I had the opportunity to progress in the future, which was exactly what Fred Olsen Travel was offering. The company’s values stood out to me, especially the equality and diversity values and the inclusivity of their employees. The accounts department are very supportive of my studies on my apprenticeship, allowing me study leave to prepare for my exams, which is something I’ve never experienced within a company before. This is extremely helpful towards achieving the best possible results I can in my exams, and also helps me excel further in the workplace too. The apprenticeship is a great way to balance earning and learning at the same time! It allows me to apply my learning immediately within the workplace so I am constantly learning and improving my knowledge. Overall, I could not have asked for a better start at a better company. Fred Olsen Travel is a great company that care about the wellbeing and standard of their employees, always looking for us to improve and to enjoy our day to day work and I look forward to continuing and developing my career here.
I completed a Level 3 Travel Consultant apprenticeship within the Ipswich TravelQuest branch. The reason I chose an apprenticeship over going to university is learning on the job, plus the bonus of earning money! I gained customer experience and confidence whilst completing my apprenticeship and found the apprenticeship catch ups very beneficial to learn from previous apprentices at Fred.\ Olsen Travel. I had opportunities to go on cruise ship visits and training conferences which helped my knowledge of selling holidays and cruises grow.
I now working within a different department at Fred.\ Olsen Travel but I am able to bring my knowledge and experiences together from my apprenticeship in the retail branch to continue to succeed in my current role.
In early 2017 I was on the hunt for a new career. The only problem was I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do next. That was until I had heard that the company was looking for multiple new apprentices throughout the business. My curiosity was peaked and I decided to apply for the Marketing Apprenticeship role within Star Clippers as it appealed to my more creative side. Subsequently, I was offered the apprenticeship and quickly found a passion and love for it and for those who supported me. Long story short, I have since been hired and have been with the company ever since. I learned a great many things throughout my apprenticeship and there’s no doubt in my mind that this is one of the reasons that I have progressed as much as I have in the business. I would definitely recommend an apprenticeship to anyone who is looking to gain fundamental skills within a workplace and wants to get their career off on the right foot – It helped me find my dream job and I know it can for others as well!
I started work as a Digital Marketing Apprentice here at Fred. Olsen Travel in 2017. I now have a full-time job in the eCommerce department after completing my course and learning the skills needed for the role.
Starting out, I didn’t really know what to expect, I had mostly thought of the generic tea and coffee making. When first meeting my team, I was quickly shown that this wasn’t the case, with the help of a mentor that would oversee my progress throughout and could help me stay on track, she has arguably been the main factor for my success while remaining at Fred. Olsen Travel and has even taught me a lot of life lessons that will stick with me forever.
During my apprenticeship I was able to tackle all aspects of the eCommerce department; from email marketing creation, graphic design, copywriting, webdesign and automation. My team encouraged me to find the path that I most enjoyed and best suited my skills.
I know many people may be looking at this with a big decision; whether to take on an apprenticeship or not. I can proudly say that it has been one of the hardest, but best things that I have done.
“The franchise means I can combine my enthusiasm for travel with a business. With opportunities to visit ships and travel the world, I can build my knowledge along with my business.”
The Head Office team take care of all the administration leaving me to focus on building the business, selling, and looking after my customers. This ability to give the personal touch and customer service does make all the difference.
We had a three day training course at Head Office. We learned about product knowledge, administration and the systems. They talk you through your own business and all the aspects of it, such as sales and marketing. They give you a good feel for that.
Anyone who thinks they can work well in this market without some sales skills, particularly based on developing good relationships with people would be misguided. However, with an open mind to look for the positive in every situation you will have every chance of becoming successful.
GoCruise & Travel has offered me a great way to build a business with excellent support in the hugely enjoyable environment of cruising and holidays.
Like many other franchisees, I came with no travel background - but with a passion for travel and a desire to help others enjoy holidays. Critical to success and enjoyment of the business is the ongoing support across all parts of the business - including super help on marketing and working with cruise lines, a very knowledgeable (and gentle!) admin team, and full franchise management support.
The brand of GoCruise & Travel opens doors into cruise lines that continually amazes me, and being part of the Fred. Olsen group provides huge financial reassurance to customers. I always feel good and confident when talking to my clients about holidays.
On top of running my own business, this has turned out to be a wonderful opportunity to visit or cruise on beautiful ships - and right now, so many people are bursting to get back onto the water and cruise.
I feel part of a wider family, always great to meet up and enjoy events together - and it’s fun!
Garry and I bought our Franchise 5 years ago after thinking about it for quite a while. We spoke to some good friends of ours, who are also Franchisees, and they told us all about the company and how GoCruise feels like a family. We were a bit dubious about this but it’s true! GoCruise really has a family feel where help is always at hand. The support and advice we also get from our Head Office is also invaluable, especially when first starting your business, and you never feel alone.
Our business has gone from strength to strength and we can honestly say that buying our Franchise is one of the best things we’ve ever done. We are based at home and work the business around any other commitments. We love every minute of it!
GoCruise ticked all the boxes - ABTA bonding, flexibility to work any hours, to run my own business the way I wanted and a dedicated support team should I need any help.
Having spent most of my career in retail travel I decided to become a GoCruise & Travel Franchisee 5 years ago. It was the best career move I ever made. I am my own boss and chose my own hours but have the security of the GoCruise team behind me... and best of all keep the majority of the commission earned on all holidays booked! I never feel alone as there is always practical help available from Head Office & fellow franchisees
Amazing opportunity to get into the travel sector with a well established brand, very supportive Head Office team plus the global power of the Fred. Olsen family behind us.
I enjoy the no pressure approach from the partners back in HQ, which enables me to mix the opportunity to own and run a cruise focused travel agency, alongside my own desire to travel regularly and see our cruise partners ships first hand.
I was lucky enough to start full-time employment in the cruising industry straight from college but then similar to many, took a break to have a family and concentrate upon other ventures.
However, I knew my passion was always in the cruise industry, I wanted something which would fit around my family providing the flexibility of working from home but also provide back-up business support in areas such as marketing and administration. A reputable, quality brand was important to me and therefore a GoCruise franchise seemed the ideal opportunity.
The whole process was straight forward yet thorough and with full details of the franchise I knew exactly what I was getting. Over the years I have built up my database through marketing and personal recommendations to provide a personal service to both new and repeat customers and had the opportunity to take stands at county shows, exhibitions and of course, undertaken numerous ship visits.
Now 5 years on, I still have the flexibility I wanted, together with Head Office support provided by a friendly team of cruise enthusiasts who are genuinely eager to support or always at the end of a phone.