Agent, Operator Help Client Who Was Bullied In Greek Resort
Bruce Parkinson, Open Jaw
A quick-thinking independent travel agent and Greek specialist operator Olympic Holidays, have won praise for coming to the aid of a UK vacationer in distress.
A gay client, in his mid 40s, was a week into a 10-night holiday in an apartment in the Rhodes resort of Faliraki, but was being threatened by fellow guests.
His travel agent, Emma Westwood, a homeworker from Independent Travel Experts based in Alton, Hampshire, woke at 7am one morning to find around 20 messages from her client pleading for help.
The client, who has been a loyal customer for many years and was travelling alone, said a group of young men had been waiting outside his apartment all night to “deal with him.” Despite calls to the local police, nothing was being done.
"He'd locked himself in and was so scared," said Westwood, who had booked the package through Olympic Holidays.
Not sure how to help, she posted a request on Travel Gossip, a UK travel industry Facebook group, asking if any colleagues had a local contact for the tour operator.
Other agents quickly responded and a number was shared for an Olympic rep in Rhodes.
"Within an hour, someone was there and had helped him move out of the apartment and to another resort," Westwood told TravelMole.
"Olympic were absolutely brilliant. I can't thank them enough. I honestly thought that it would take 24 hours for it all to be dealt with but they clearly went straight in and had it sorted within an hour."
She said her client later contacted her to say he was feeling tired but was happy and relieved to be in his new accommodation, where he would continue his holiday.
Other agents were quick to post messages of congratulations to the agent and to staff at Olympic Holidays and express their shock and sadness about the man's situation.
"This was very upsetting to read," said one agent. "Well done Olympic Holidays and you, Emma Westwood, for getting him moved. It must have been such a frightening ordeal for him. Thank goodness he is safe now."