A TRAVEL agency with a difference has opened in Slough - it is based in a college and is run by the students.
East Berkshire College in Station Road, Langley launched the agency on Saturday.
It is based in the reception area of the college and is staffed by six travel and tourism students who have been industry trained for their roles.
However they will not be alone - the travel agency is being run in partnership with Sunninghill Travel, based in Ascot, which is a member of ABTA and offers everything from tailor-made luxury holidays to city breaks and cruises.
The students will be mentored by the managing director of Sunninghill Travel Ltd, Sarah Lidenhammar, and her team of senior staff.
As well as providing real work experience for students, the idea is to offer the community a nearby, independent travel agent.
Student Oliwia Sikora, 18, from Slough, who is currently studying a Travel & Tourism Level 3 course at the College, said: “The new agency is a great opportunity for us to learn, keep up-to-date with what’s happening in the travel industry and gain experience working with real customers.
"I think people prefer to speak to someone when booking a holiday as we can offer them advice on destinations and help them choose the right holiday for their needs. We have already received a lot of enquiries and we are looking forward to welcoming in local residents.”
The agency will be open on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 11am until 4pm.
Student Frederique Connor, who is studying the Foundation Degree in Tourism and Hospitality Management through the College and employed by Sunninghill Travel, will act as a team leader at the new agency.
Ms Lidenhammar added: "Sunninghill Travel is an independent travel agency that strives to provide a high quality, personal service. By opening up an agency at Langley College, the aim is to serve the local community and to provide valuable work experience for college students. As there is no travel agent in the local area, this offers a great opportunity for local residents to benefit from speaking directly to trained individuals to help find the best deal and a holiday that really suits their needs.”
East Berkshire College offers a range of travel and tourism courses, from level two right through to a foundation degree. For further information, call 01753 793000 or visit www.eastberks.ac.uk.