Changing of the guard at award-winning Helloworld offices

John Cooney passes on the baton to Annabel Dolphin

After 33 years in the local travel industry, part-owner of leading local travel agency Helloworld Travel Mackay & Mt Pleasant, John Cooney, is retiring and handing over the reins to General Manager, Annabel Dolphin.

Cooney said he was “very confident for the continued success of Helloworld Travel Mackay & Mt Pleasant with General Manager, Annabel Dolphin, leading the tremendous team into the future”.

Dolphin has been involved with the business since 2017 and has led the team to win its first National Travel Industry Award (NTIA) for ‘Best Travel Agency Leisure – Multi Location’ in Australia.

“We are proud to put Mackay on the map through this national platform and really appreciate our customers and suppliers who support our locally owned business. We will continue to build on John’s significant contribution to the local travel industry,” Dolphin said.

Born and bred in Mackay, Cooney purchased the travel agency in 1986 which was run under the Harvey World Travel franchise. In 2014, the business re-branded to the Helloworld Travel franchise and remains in operation under this franchise framework. The business has gone from a two-person team to employing over 30 local staff.

“I feel privileged to have served the people of the Mackay region helping them with their holiday dreams. Over the years, my highlight would be seeing the loyalty of our customers, returning time and again, entrusting us with planning their holidays. The dedication, loyalty and hard work of my fellow staff has been the secret to our success,” Cooney said.

“Although I am leaving the business, I will continue to host a selection of the travel agency’s group tours (Hosted Journeys). In April 2020, myself and my wife, Kerry, will be hosting a tour to Spain and Portugal, cruising on the Douro River on a brand-new river boat.”

Lead image: Helloworld Travel Mackay & Mt Pleasant farewell John Cooney as he hands the reins over to General Manager, Annabel Dolphin. From left to right: Ben Dolphin, Annabel Dolphin, John Cooney, Stacey Cole and Matthew Perre

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