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Trailfinders Milestones

Trailfinders Milestones

2020

October

Trailfinders named Holiday Provider of the Year at the Which? Awards 2020

August

Solihull travel centre opens

March

Winchester travel centre opens

2019

June

Milton Keynes travel centre opens

June

Trailfinders named Travel Brand of the Year at the Which? Awards 2019

June

Sheffield travel centre opens

May

Chelmsford travel centre opens

February

Booked our 16 millionth client

2018

December

Trailfinders named High Street Travel Agency of the Year at the CLIA Cruise Excellence Awards 2018

November

Trailfinders named Travel Experts at the National Geographic Traveller Reader Awards 2018 for the second consecutive year

September

Trailfinders named Tour Operator of the Year for the second consecutive year at the Food and Travel Magazine Awards

September

For the sixth consecutive year and since the inception of the awards, Trailfinders is voted Best Tour Operator by readers of The Times, The Sunday Times & The Sunday Times Travel Magazine

May

Bath travel centre opens

May

Trailfinders South African Wine Estate Garden wins a Silver Gilt medal at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show

March

Worcester travel centre opens

2017

January

Booked our 15 millionth travel client

July

Trailfinders named 'Best Travel Operator' by readers of the Sunday Times Travel Magazine

September

Trailfinders named Tour Operator of the Year by readers of the prestigious Food & Travel Magazine.

September

Trailfinders is once again named Best Tour Operator by readers of The Times, The Sunday Times and The Sunday Times Travel Magazine. This title has been retained by Trailfinders every year since the inception of these awards.

2016

September

For the fourth consecutive year and since the inception of the awards, Trailfinders has been voted 'Best Tour Operator' by readers of The Times, The Sunday Times and The Sunday Times Travel Magazine.

March

Reading travel centre opens
Trailfinders wins 'Most Trusted Travel Brand' and 'Best Package Holiday Operator' at the Guardian & Observer Travel Awards.
Trailfinders wins 'Keep Exploring' award. Trailfinders was recognised by Destination Canada, Canada's Official Tourist Board, as a UK market leader for our innovative and inspiring Canada programme.

2015

October

Richmond travel centre opens

June

Trailfinders named 'Best Travel Company' at the Which? Awards 2015 - Awarded maximum five stars for customer service

2014

October

Voted the UK's Best Tour Operator by readers of The Times, The Sunday Times & The Sunday Times Travel Magazine

March

Saint Albans Travel Centre opens

June

Trailfinders comes top of the Which? consumer group Travel Survey 2014
Guildford travel centre opens

December

Trailfinders named High Street Travel Agent of the year at the annual awards of the prestigious Cruise Line International Association, the world’s largest cruise trade industry association.
Trailfinders voted 'Best Tour Operator' by readers of The Telegraph

2013

October

Voted the UK's Best Tour Operator by readers of The Times, The Sunday Times & The Sunday Times Travel Magazine in their inaugural travel awards ceremony

May

Trailfinders Australia Garden wins a Gold Medal and awarded Best in Show at the prestigious RHS Chelsea Flower Show

June

Trailfinders comes top of the Which? consumer group Travel Survey 2013, scoring an impressive 92%

July

Trailfinders wins Best Value Tour Operator in The Sunday Times Travel Magazine VFM 2013 Awards

2012

May

Trailfinders comes top of the Which? consumer group Travel Survey 2012, scoring an outstanding 97%
Trailfinders Australia Garden wins a Silver Gilt medal at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show

June

Liverpool Travel Centre opens, Trailfinders 26th travel centre in the UK & Ireland

April

Chester Travel Centre opens

2011

October

Voted Favourite Specialist Independent Tour Operator by readers in The Telegraph Travel Awards 2011

May

Which? magazine readers vote Trailfinders number 1 in the UK Top Travel Companies survey
Trailfinders Australian Garden wins a Silver Gilt medal at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show

March

Conduit Street travel centre opens in London’s West End

2010

September

Exeter travel centre opens

January

Trailfinders has been voted 'Best Tour Operator' 2010 by Wanderlust readers. 627 companies were nominated in the category so we are hugely proud of this award.

2009

October

For the third consecutive year and tenth separate occasion, Trailfinders has been awarded Best Tour Operator 2009 in the Guardian, Observer and Guardian Unlimited Travel Awards. We're also delighted to announce we've scooped the Best Short Break Company for 2009. We would like to thank all the readers of The Guardian & Observer who voted for us.

June

Booked our 11 millionth travel client

2008

October

Voted Best Tour Operator 2008 by readers of The Observer & Guardian

November

Voted Best Specialist Independent Operator 2008 by readers in The Telegraph travel awards
Trailfinders launches new Adventure Touring & Expedition Cruising brochure in partnership with G.A.P Adventures

May

Demise of the all-Business Class airlines – Trailfinders ensures none of its clients suffer any financial loss, rebooking and reprotecting all its clients or offering full refunds when Oasis Airlines, Maxjet, EOS & Silverjet all cease operations
Trailfinders Australia Garden wins a Gold Medal at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show
Trailfinders Specialist Round the World & Tailormade Private Touring departments are created

June

A winner in the Best Longhaul Tour Operator category in the Sunday Times Travel Magazine reader awards

January

Tristan Gooley, Trailfinders Vice-Chairman successfully completes a solo Transatlantic sail from Lanzarote to St Lucia, making him the only living person to have both flown and sailed across the Atlantic.

December

Bournemouth travel centre opens

2007

October

Voted Best Large Tour Operator 2007 by readers of The Observer & Guardian

November

Booked our 10 millionth client
Voted Best Specialist Travel Organiser 2007 by Telegraph readers

May

Tristan Gooley, Trailfinders Vice-Chairman, successfully completes a Solo Transatlantic flight covering 2,751 miles from Goose Bay, Canada to Oxford, England
The £6 million Olympic Pavilion at Trailfinders Sports Club is officially opened by Steve Pound MP on 4 May
Trailfinders Australian Garden wins Silver-Gilt medal at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show
Aberdeen Travel Centre opens

July

Launch of Trailfinders dedicated Worldwide Cruising Team

February

Trailfinders at Selfridges, Oxford Street London opens

April

Edinburgh Travel Centre opens

2006

September

Voted CoolBrand for the 3rd year

October

Cork Travel Centre Opens

May

Canary Wharf Travel Centre Opens
Trailfinders sponsors the Gold Medal winning garden - 'Fleming's Nurseries Australian Garden presented by Trailfinders' at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show

March

Winner UK Leisure Air Seat Retailer of the Year at The 2006 Agent Achievement Awards
Launched 'Hotels with a Difference' brochure

June

Canterbury Travel Centre Opens
Mike Gooley awarded prestigious 'Chairmans Award for Most Important Contribution to Australian Tourism by an Individual' by Tourism Australia

February

Winner No. 1 Retail Operator to New Zealand at New Zealand Travel Awards with Air New Zealand

December

Mike Gooley is awarded CBE for his services to the Travel Industry and to charity.

August

Trailfinders Knightsbridge Opens in Harrods

April

Brighton Travel Centre Opens
Booked our 9 millionth passenger

2005

September

Named a Superbrand by the Superbrands Council 2005
Voted Best Travel Agent in The Guardian/Observer awards for seventh time - reader voted

October

Voted Best Independent Travel Specialist in The Telegraph Travel Awards for fifth time and only company to win their award every year since their inception - reader voted

March

100th Edition of Trailfinder Magazine published

June

Norwich Travel Centre opens

July

Ranked tenth largest producer of scheduled airline business in the UK

August

Cardiff Travel Centre opens

2004

September

Named a Cool BrandLeader for 2004 by Super Brands

October

Voted Best Independent Travel Specialist in The Telegraph Travel Awards for fourth time - reader voted

May

Voted Best Travel Agent in The Guardian/Observer awards for sixth time - reader voted
Ranked twelfth largest producer of scheduled airline business in the UK

December

Nottingham Travel Centre opens
Book our eight-millionth passenger

August

Covent Garden Travel Centre opens as a concession in Stanfords Maps and Books

2003

October

Voted Best Independent Travel Specialist in The Telegraph Travel Awards for third time - reader voted

May

Voted Best Travel Agent in The Guardian/Observer awards for fifth time - reader voted
Ranked eleventh largest producer of scheduled airline business in the UK

July

Book our seven-millionth passenger

December

Belfast Travel Centre Opens in its own right
London Longhaul and Transatlantic Travel Centres merge forming Kensington 'United', one stop travel shop.
European Department remains independent.

April

Oxford Travel Centre Opens
The Mike Gooley Trailfinders Charity passes £10 million in donations
The Sunday Times Rich List names Mike Gooley as the fourteenth most generous giver to charity

2002

October

Voted Best Independent Travel Specialist in The Telegraph Travel Awards for second time - reader voted
Piccadilly Travel Centre opens as a concession in Waterstones - the largest bookshop in Europe

November

Leeds Travel Centre Opens

March

Book our six-millionth passenger

July

The Trailfinder Magazine surpasses one million print run and a mail out over 550,000

2001

October

Voted Best Independent Travel Specialist in The Telegraph Travel Awards - reader voted
Voted Best Travel Agent by Wanderlust readers

March

Belfast Travel Centre opens as a concession in Waterstones

June

Voted Best Travel Agent in The Guardian/Observer awards for fourth time - reader voted

2000

October

Book our five-millionth passenger

May

Cambridge Travel Centre opens

March

Melbourne and Perth Travel Centres open

June

Dedicated First & Business Class departments launch in Birmingham and Bristol

1999

March

London City Travel Centre opens at No1 Threadneedle Street
Book our four-millionth passenger

December

Mike Gooley is awarded 'National Entrepreneur of the Year - Consumer Products & Services'

1998

September

Trailfinders Website goes live

October

Newcastle Travel Centre opens

May

Trailfinders logo rebranded and launched

March

Sydney Travel Centre opens

June

Trailfinders 'duty office' role implemented providing 24 hour, 365 day cover for our clients

July

Voted Best Travel Agent in The Guardian/Observer awards for third time - reader voted
Book our three-millionth passenger

1997

October

Trailfinders Sports Club opens

March

Dublin Travel Centre opens

1996

May

Voted Best Travel Agent in The Guardian/Observer awards for second time - reader voted

February

Book our two-millionth passenger
Volunteer to the CAA on an official basis to be responsible for the refund or repatriation of any of our clients
suffering as a result of an airline failure

August

London Southside opens - the largest retail travel outlet in the UK at 11,500 sq ft

1995

October

Set up the Mike Gooley Trailfinders Charity with a £1 million donation

May

Voted Best Travel Agent in The Guardian/Observer awards - reader voted
Authorised to start issuing Australian visas on the spot from our Visa and Passport department in Kensington

March

Birmingham Travel Centre Opens

1994

May

Open our first Australian Travel Centre in Cairns

June

Ranked fourth largest producer of scheduled airline business in the UK, outranking Thomas Cook, Lunn Poly and AT Mays

1993

May

Glasgow Travel Centre Opens

June

Set up the Clients Trust Account, protecting all client funds paid to Trailfinders

December

Bristol Travel Centre Opens

1992

July

Book our one-millionth passenger

1991

June

Open our first regional Travel Centre in Manchester

1989

May

Kensington Flagship Travel Centre opens, state of the art one stop travel shop and the largest in the UK at 8,000 sq ft

1979

May

Became the first travel organiser to be IATA licensed
Became the first travel organiser to be connected directly into the Airline Computer Reservation System
Became the first travel organiser to be granted an ATOL licence by the CAA

1977

June

Record our first profit

1972

October

Developed the sourcing and marketing of discount air tickets to the public who began to benefit from affordable worldwide jet travel. We became the first flight consolidator/travel organiser and advertised discounted air tickets in the national press, emerging as the field leaders.

1971

May

First edition of the Trailfinder Magazine published

1970

October

Trailfinders formed by Mike Gooley with a staff of four as an overland tour operator

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