New England Travel Agent selected to attend Australian Tourism Exchange

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New Englander Jeanne Crouse of Great Escape Travel has been selected to join 600 key international buyers from over 40 countries at a unique tourism forum in Australia. Influential international buyers are selected by Tourism Australia to meet with the best of Australian tourism businesses at the Australian Tourism Exchange (ATE), which was held this year in Brisbane, Australia. ATE provides a unique forum for leading Australian tourism businesses to showcase their destinations to key international buyers while providing them with an opportunity to experience Australia up close and personal.

New Englander Jeanne Crouse of Great Escape Travel has been selected to join 600 key international buyers from over 40 countries at a unique tourism forum in Australia.

Influential international buyers are selected by Tourism Australia to meet with the best of Australian tourism businesses at the Australian Tourism Exchange (ATE), which was held this year in Brisbane, Australia. ATE provides a unique forum for leading Australian tourism businesses to showcase their destinations to key international buyers while providing them with an opportunity to experience Australia up close and personal.

Jeanne Crouse, president of Great Escape Travel Services and Tourism Australia's sole Premier Aussie Specialist in New Hampshire was invited to join a select group of 20 Premier Aussie Specialists from North America to attend the Brisbane ATE as guests of Tourism Australia. "It was not my first trip to Australia" said Crouse. "It is one of my favorite destinations as I find Australians friendly and genuinely warm-hearted. What can I say about their environment - simply - awesomely unique."

When visiting Australia, Crouse finds that "Aussies really go out of their way to make visitors feel welcome. But, it can get a little overwhelming during a Tourism Exchange such as ATE." Over the course of the five days of the Exchange Forum, pre-arranged meetings were held at 15-minute intervals between the visiting buyers and representatives of Australian Tourism businesses. "It was a marathon, but very beneficial," Crouse said "meeting so many Aussies passionate about the various tourism destinations they were promoting."

Crouse said "I came away from the week having uncovered a wealth of information about really exciting experiences along roads less traveled and the real bonus - met some wonderful people." Tourism Australia prepared participants well for the busy week with options to take tours before ATE to relax from the trip downunder and afterwards to relax from the busy week before they returned home. Crouse visited Queensland before ATE and mentioned one of the highlights was a visit to Fraser Island.

"Frazer Island was an amazing experience," she said. "It's the world's largest island of sand and has been 700,000 years in the making. As a World Heritage area since 1992, it shares its status with other global giants such as our own Grand Canyon and Egypt's Pyramids. Contrary to common perception that sandy soils are relatively infertile, life on the Frazer Island sand is incredible. More than 300 native animal and 600 plant species live there including many threatened species. It is one of the few places in the world where a rainforest grows on sand.

After ATE, Crouse's destination was a relaxing four day tour of Tasmania - another of Australia's Islands. One of her memorable visits was to Tarraleah, a spectacular 300 acre estate in the Tasmanian Highlands - a beautiful 2 hour drive from capital Hobart's airport. Tarraleah is a perfect retreat: wilderness, wildlife, waterfall walks, local crafts, kayaking, boating, golf and a great latte when needed. Enjoying crafts, Crouse had fun learning to "tie a fly" and the art of fly-fishing. However she said, "my biggest disappointment was that I couldn't try out my new found skills and stalk some of the real wild wily Brown Trout that were lurking in sight in the beautifully clear shallow lakes - fishing was not in season. The sight of them was enough to make me want to plan to go back to Tassie, as the locals call Tasmania, during the fishing season."

Great Escape Travel Services LLC (http://www.greatescapetraveller.com) is a travel company focused on providing adventurous travel experiences for travelers to the South Pacific - or distinctive cruises to worldwide ports of call with less of a tourist footprint.

Jeanne Crouse, president and co-owner first entered the travel industry in 1992, is a graduate of the University of Hartford, MBA and the University of Kentucky, MFA and was honored as the first recipient of Hartford College's Businessperson of the Year award.

Premier Aussie Specialists are a select group of 133 agents chosen from the several thousand Aussie Specialists from within North America. Aussie Specialists are a dedicated group of retail travel agents who actively sell and promote Australia. These 'Aussie Experts' have been educated and trained in the Aussie Specialist Program run by Tourism Australia and the State and Territory Tourism Organizations.

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