Ocean Holidays Scoops Hat-Trick of Prestigious Awards

Ocean Holidays was delighted to scoop three prestigious awards at a glittering travel industry ceremony in London last night (November 25), including a special award for ‘Rising Brand of the Year’.

Alongside the Rising Brand accolade, we are proud to have been recognised as Champions of Data and Best CRM (Customer Relationship Management) Platform, by online travel news site Travolution. These awards are testament to the company’s successful strategy throughout the last year, which has seen us become the fastest growing tour operator in the latest ATOL listings when compared to the pre-pandemic period.

Ocean Holidays comprises three unique and distinct travel brands. Ocean Florida, the largest direct-to-consumer Florida specialist in Europe; Winged Boots, which leads in personalised luxury leisure holidays; and Ocean Beds, the largest worldwide provider of Florida vacation home rentals to the global travel trade.

Harry Hastings, Co-CEO of Ocean Holidays said: “We are absolutely thrilled to have been recognised by industry leaders for our work over the past year which has been incredibly challenging, to say the least, for the global travel industry. We’ve always put our customers and the smart use of technology and data at the heart of everything we do, and these awards are testament to our strategy and the hard work of our talented team.”

Lee Hayhurst, Travolution executive editor, said: “After such a challenging period we’re delighted that we were able to get our finalists together in a room to celebrate the incredible talent that exists in the travel and technology sectors.
It’s hard not to be impressed by just how the sector has reacted to diversity and found ways to survive, and in many cases thrive, during the most difficult period the sector has ever faced. Congratulations!”

Ocean Holidays Group named “Ones to Watch” by best companies

Ocean Holidays is pleased to announce our special status as “Ones to Watch” by best companies for demonstrating “good” levels of workplace engagement. This is particularly pleasing during a time when the travel industry has had its worst crisis in living memory due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Achieving “Ones to Watch” status requires a score of at least 600/1000. However, having scored 659.3 this is just 0.2 marks off 659.5 which would have resulted in a ‘1 star accreditation’ of ‘very good’ workplace levels of engagement. This has been reason to celebrate in the first year of running the comprehensive b’ companies survey. Being so close to the next level of best companies is a fantastic platform to continue to improve Ocean Holidays as a travel industry leading employer. Employee engagement is more than just survey results. It is a promise of honest conversations and a pledge to provide a rewarding and healthy environment for employees at a company that puts its people first.

Notable highlights in the b’ companies survey include 94% of staff agreeing the company encourages giving back and charitable activities, 92% believing they make a valuable contribution to the success of the organisation and more than 40% of senior managers being women.

For more information visit https://www.b.co.uk/companies/ocean-holidays

Travel Advice

In light of the presence of Covid-19, Ocean Holidays is committed to helping its current customers with existing bookings as well as those who would like to book new packages.

We’d like to thank all our customers for your patience during this tricky and challenging time. Our dedicated teams are working hard to find the right solution for each customer.

More Information

Ocean Florida customers, please CLICK HERE to visit the website for further details

Winged Boots customers, please CLICK HERE to visit the website for further details

Ocean Beds customers, please CLICK HERE to visit the website for further details

Our staff are kept up to date with the latest advice from the FCO, which you can also view here:

https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice

Ocean Holidays Hires First Group Marketing Director

Former Love Holidays and Tui marketing boss Christian Armond has been appointed by Ocean Holidays Group as its first marketing director.

Armond joins the Essex-based destination and luxury holidays specialist having left OTA Love Holidays last October after a year as marketing director.

Prior to that he worked in digital marketing at Tui for just over four years, latterly as head of digital marketing overseeing SEO, PPC, display, affiliates, and biddable social.

Ocean Holidays comprises consumer brand Ocean Florida and upmarket concierge operator Winged Boots, which Armond is tasked with drive continuing growth for.

He will also oversee the B-B Ocean Beds brands, which supplies accommodation to trade partners. Armond is the first non-founder to oversee marketing for the group’s three brands.

Harry Hastings, co-chief executive of Ocean Holidays Group, said: “‘The next phase of our scaling-up plans will rely heavily on the success of our performance-led marketing and we are delighted to be welcoming Christian into our management team as group marketing director. He is the right leader for this new role, with the track record to match.”

Armond, added: “I’m hugely excited to be joining the Ocean Holidays team, and was very impressed with the strategic vision for the business to build on Ocean Florida’s position as the leading Florida specialist, and Winged Boots expertise in personalised luxury travel management”

Ocean Holidays Group has offices in Romford, Essex, and Orlando, Florida. It has seen an average annual revenue growth rate  of 30% over the past five years, surpassing £60million revenue in 2019.

Founders Selected as Part of the Top 50 Most Ambitious Business Leaders

The Ocean Holidays founders are extremely excited to announce they have been selected as part of LDC and The Telegraph’s Top 50 Most Ambitious Business Leaders.

In its second year, this rewarding accolade celebrates the UK’s most ambitious leaders in business who inspire success and shines a light on the unsung heroes of the British Economy. The top 50 leaders will be showcased in The Daily Telegraph during the week of 30th September, with the most ambitious named at a star-studded event on 8th October 2019.

Q&A

What’s your USP?

Daniel: We have built all our technology in-house; we employ 25 developers in the business. Where other companies invest in the front end, we invest in the back end. It means our agents can handle 250 enquiries at any one time. We contact customers within one minute of posting an enquiry and we’ll know what they want and when they want it. No one has been able to challenge us in this niche. Ocean Florida will carry 27,000 passengers this year, and Winged Boots will carry 6,000 and we’re growing 25pc a year.

For you, what is ambition?

Harry: We’re already the largest privately-owned specialist – the only companies bigger than us have their own airline. We want to keep growing both our brands and we are aiming to hit £100m in revenue by 2021. But we are also excited by innovation and technology. We find it very satisfying when we do things that other people can’t. We are really moving the dial in this industry.

How important have your business partners been in achieving your success?

Harry: We are four equal partners: two sets of brothers. This is a family business. We all bring different strengths and skillsets to the business and we all complement each other. We have worked together for 16 years and we have been through the fire together. That has created an important bond. No matter how difficult the decision, we always come together to make it happen.

Click here to see more about the awards

In light of the news of Thomas Cook going into administration on 23rd September 2019 please find the following information

If you booked a Disney holiday with Thomas Cook

We can now offer customers affected by Thomas Cook a Disney holiday with the same requirements as their original booking, including holidays with Disney Dining plans. Our teams will simply transfer your booking from Thomas Cook to Ocean Florida, ensuring all your original bookings are honoured.

Customers rebooking their Disney holiday will no longer receive their Disney gift cards and will have to rebook extra services like FastPass+ and dining reservations using their new Disney confirmation number.

Please note: This only applies to enquiries that are requested EXACTLY as per the original booking

If you had a villa booking with Thomas Cook

Yesterday, our Orlando Welcome Centre team secured contracts with the two main villa suppliers Thomas Cook were using at discounted rates. Therefore, there is a high likelihood that we can match your existing villa booking. Contact one of our USA Travel Specialists to discuss your options on 020 7788 8254.

If you have an upcoming booking with Ocean Florida on Thomas cook flights

Your booking with us is ATOL protected so your holiday is completely safe. Our teams have been working to secure alternative flights for all customers since Monday. If you have not spoken to us yet, please call our After Sales Team on 020 3814 2198 between 9.00am and 5.30pm today. Our teams have completed all 2019 departures and will begin working through 2020 and 2021 departures.

If you have booked with another travel company but are staying in a villa or hotel provided by Ocean Holidays

Your booking with us is ATOL protected so your holiday is completely safe. Our teams have been working to secure alternative flights for all customers since Monday. If you have not spoken to us yet, please call our After Sales Team on 020 3814 2198 between 9.00am and 5.30pm today. Our teams have completed all 2019 departures and will begin working through 2020 and 2021 departures.

If you didn’t book with Ocean Florida but want to rebook your USA Holiday

If you had an upcoming holiday to the US with Thomas Cook, we can help rebook your trip to ensure you don’t miss out. Contact one of our USA Travel Specialists to discuss your options on 020 7939 7775 or make an enquiry.

How to rebook and reclaim

  • Speak to one of our USA Specialists or make an enquiry
  • Secure a similar package to what you originally booked
  • Claim a full refund for your original Thomas Cook holiday from ATOL or your credit/debit card provider if your holiday booking is protected

How we can help

  • We will aim to book your USA holiday for the same price as your original booking with Thomas Cook with departures available through 2021
  • Your new package holiday will be fully ATOL protected and booked on a scheduled airline such as Virgin Atlantic or British Airways
  • Our Orlando office and welcome centre is the largest Florida specialist for UK customers. We are therefore fully prepared and ready to help customers dream holidays still come true

How to make a claim

We have found that Moneysavingexpert has the most up to date and rounded guide on all other options regarding the various status’ of bookings made with Thomas Cook including how to reclaim on your credit/debit card using section 75. Read more here

We are incredibly flattered to announce that we have won the Overall Winner for the British Travel Awards’ Best Holiday Company to the USA!

Roll up, roll up and hear the news of the world! Ocean Florida has won the Overall Winner place for a British Travel Award in the Best Holiday Company To The USA category, as well as a Bronze award for the Best Villa Holiday Company category. This is a huge accolade which has completely overwhelmed us all overnight.

We’re a home-grown, family-run company who have strived to provide the most amazing USA holidays possible over the years. We are constantly grafting to improve our service, and work tirelessly to make sure that our customers are satisfied with their experience when they book with us. Our improvement this year shows, since in 2017 we won a Silver award for the Best Medium Holiday Company To The USA, and now we’ve won the Overall Winner for Best Holiday Company To The USA.

We are delighted for our efforts to be recognised by such a prestigious organisation like the British Travel Awards, and more importantly, our loyal customers. We send a huge thank you to customers old and new, as well as everyone who had voted for us to win this fantastic award. It really does mean a lot and has sent joyous shockwaves throughout the entire company.

Thank you so much, and here’s to 2019!

Love,

Ocean Florida

Ocean Holidays Win Apprentice Employer of the Year Award

Ocean Holidays has won the prestigious Apprentice Employer of the Year Award from the Havering College of Further and Higher Education. The awards evening was held at the Ardleigh Green Campus on Wednesday 27thJune and was attended by Denise Morrison, Ocean Holidays Accounts Manager.

This rewarding ceremony celebrated those who were nominated and awarded in a range of categories. There were three companies nominated for the Apprentice Employer of the Year Award and the winner was chosen by Asfa Sohail, Vice Principal and Steve Lee, Head of Apprenticeships and Traineeships. Ocean Holidays are overjoyed to be awarded with this accolade, proving that our apprentices make a real difference to the business whilst learning the necessary skills to help them grow and develop their career.

Well done to everyone involved!

OCEAN HOLIDAYS SIGNS TWO-YEAR DEAL TO BECOME OFFICIAL TRAVEL SUPPLIER OF JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS!

– FIRST UK HOLIDAY FIRM TO SIGN DEAL WITH NFL TEAM –

Monday 13th November Ocean Holidays has signed a two-year partnership to become the official travel supplier for NFL team, Jacksonville Jaguars.

This ground-breaking partnership means customers of Ocean Florida – Ocean Holidays’ Florida specialist – will be able to buy Jacksonville Jaguar NFL holidays, which include tickets and transfers to see the Jaguars at their home-ground EverBank Field, during the 2018 NFL season. This is the first time such a package will be on offer from a UK holiday provider.

Ocean Florida’s Jacksonville Jaguar NFL holiday packages start from £819 per person. This is for a 14-night holiday at the Mystic Dunes Resort in Orlando, on a room-only basis, return flights from London Gatwick departing on November 8, plus NFL tickets and transfers to and from the match. Price based on four sharing. Packages will officially go on sale early 2018, in line with the release of the NFL schedule.

The Jacksonville Jaguars are the first and only NFL team to have made a multi-year commitment to play league matches in the UK. This season they defeated the Baltimore Ravens 44-7 at Wembley Stadium during the recent London Games series.

Ocean Florida and the Jacksonville Jaguars will also run a range of additional marketing activity giving UK holidaymakers the chance to win exclusive Jaguars prizes and experiences in both the UK and USA.

Harry Hastings, co-chief executive of Ocean Holidays, said: “We are thrilled to announce this exciting partnership with the Jacksonville Jaguars. The popularity of the NFL is increasing exponentially in the UK, and this deal will give NFL fans unparalleled access to tickets and experiences both in the UK and USA.”

Hussain Naqi, Senior Vice President, International Development for the Jacksonville Jaguars, said “This partnership illustrates exactly what the Jacksonville Jaguars are about – collaborating with like-minded transatlantic businesses to create new experiences and opportunities that excite our fans.”

“The unique service Ocean Holidays provide means that there’s no better way for Jaguars fans from the UK to sample the best that Jacksonville has to offer, and to experience the energy of a game day at EverBank Field.”

A key part of the partnership will see Ocean Holidays become the new official corporate travel partner to the Jaguars through its specialist luxury travel management company, Winged Boots. Its Personal Travel Managers will be instrumental in managing the team’s travel needs as they travel to and from their second home at Wembley Stadium in the UK.

Travel Weekly brand, ‘Travolution’ has featured an article on Ocean Holidays…!

With the brand new offices and constant expansion within Ocean Holidays, it’s a very exciting time and so Lee Hayhurst from Travel Weekly recently visited Ocean Holidays HQ to sit down with Co-CEOs Harry Hastings and Daniel Ox to chat more about the company’s growth, the roll-out of the new CRM platform and more…!