As a local to Lane Cove chances are you would have seen or heard of Debbi Ashes. Always dressed glamorously, the petite blonde wears sparkles and heels wherever she goes, you cannot miss her. A long-time resident of Lane Cove, Debbi has lived in the area for over 35 years, raising her family here whilst starting, building and managing the highly successful travel agency business Helloworld Travel Lane Cove. With an office space virtually the size of a postage stamp, over the past 24 years Debbi has grown her small business to become one of the most highly recognised travel agencies in Australia.
Debbi’s success is attributed to her life long career in the travel industry and her passion and drive for ensuring every one of her clients has the most unbelievable holiday or seamless business trip every time they travel. Debbi’s late father was a huge influence for her, having owned and managed his own pharmacy in Mosman for 40 years, Debbi understood how important genuine, friendly and efficient customer service is to the core of a business.
She surrounds herself with a strong team, which includes daughter Courtney, who has been working for the business now for 4 years. Their dedication to their clients has been recognised year on year by the Australian Federation of Travel Agents, at the annual National Travel Industry Awards with Debbi featuring every year in these awards as a finalist since 2007. Most recently she was awarded the honour of Best Retail Travel Agency Manager for 2019, a back to back win having also won this title in 2018.
Courtney was a top five finalist in 2019 for Young Agent of the Year, an accolade she was the winner of in 2018. In addition she was also a Finalist in the Best Travel Consultant Retail last year, one of the top five travel agents in the country. Whilst the industry has recognised the travel agency’s success at their craft so has the local community. Courtney has a background in event management and is very experienced in managing conferences and travel arrangements for large groups.
The majority of the business’ customer base living locally and over 80% of the clients being repeat business, some of whom have been loyal clients of Debbi’s from the day the doors opened.
Rest assured that when bringing your travel business to Debbi and her team you will be in great hands. The staff have a wealth of experience both personally and professionally having travelled to over 40 countries between them and each booking is treated as if it were their own.
On a personal level Debbi has a deep connection with Vanuatu, having travelled their annually for over 30 years. She is the godmother to two young Ni-Van girls, also named Debbi. She has contributed to the local Ni-Van community for many years donating computers and books to local schools and was responsible for co-ordinating the Wenona School program to Vanuatu for many years.
The Ashes family have travelled together to destinations all over the world, so Debbi is well versed in planning travel arrangements for families, including those with 3 children, having three girls herself. Her favourite destinations include Hawaii, Africa and Greece. Courtney recently spent six weeks in Europe on her honeymoon and has plans to visit Canada, Hawaii, Bintan Island, New Orleans and the Maldives in the upcoming months. Both Debbi and Courtney have a love for all things Disney and have visited the theme parks on multiple occasions. Debbi’s next holiday will be a new experience for her – India.
Debbi and her team are dedicated to ensuring their clients have access to the most competitive fares and accommodation deals, which is made possible by the businesses’ affiliation with the Helloworld Travel Brand. The store is open from 9am to 6pm Monday to Friday, and 10 – 12:30pm on Saturday’s and after hour appointments are always available. Unique to Helloworld Travel Lane Cove is the 24/7 after hour’s contact, where Debbi makes herself available for all of her clients, day or night, no matter where she is in the world should a client have any issues that arise.
If there is one thing that Debbi strives for its attention to detail. From personal restaurant recommendations to the best place to buy diamonds in New York or leather in Buenos Aires, Debbi and her team pride themselves on going above and beyond for all of their clients and offering just that little bit more than your average travel agent. There is not much they don’t know in the way of travel and if they don’t they won’t stop until they do.
So if you are planning that next adventure and are daunted by all the options or you simply need someone to take the stress of organising your business trip next week, look no further. The team at Helloworld Travel Lane Cove would love to hear from you and look forward to the opportunity to plan your next getaway. They love a challenging itinerary and no booking it too big or too small. You will find them in the tiny fishbowl office at the end of the Lane Cove plaza overlooking the crossing on Longueville Road. Drop in and say hello to Debbi and her team and they will make sure you have a holiday to remember for a lifetime.