Root Beer Rewards: BC A&W Gives 10-Year Employees Free Trips

Anna Kroupina, Open Jaw

A much-needed vacation was no tall order for three employees of an A&W in Ladysmith, BC, who each were surprised with an all-inclusive holiday as a reward for their decade of service with the fast-food chain.

A&W franchise owners Jason and Lorie Kelland, wanted to do something special to recognize the contributions of long-time employees Kelly Frenchy, Katherine Aleck, and Muriel Jack. And what’s more special than an all paid vacation? So they approached Marlin Travel's Harlene Charley, Branch Manager at the Ladysmith location, for some expert travel assistance.  

"Jason and Lori are friends and also my clients," Charley tells Open Jaw. 

"Jason had come into the office and told me that he has three employees that have been with him for 10 or more years and he wanted to do something nice for them. We planned out a few different options suitable for each employee and their families."

Frenchy, who is a shift manager and supervisor, is headed to Mexico with his wife at the end of May.

“It’s the best thing ever. I never thought this would have happened,” Frenchy told the Ladysmith Chemainus Chronicle.

It’ll be the couple’s first time heading to Mexico, and the second time leaving Canada.

Jack, who Charley says is at the Riu Emerald Bay in Mazatlan Mexico at this very moment, has been with A&W for a little more than 10 years. The furthest she’s ever been is Las Vegas, where she went last year.

“It’s made me even more proud of my dedication and hard work,” Jack told the local news outlet before she left on her trip. “I’m going to love it so much, I’ll probably start travelling more.”

Katherine Aleck has been with A&W for 14 years. She said the furthest she’s been out of Canada is Lummi, Washington 15 or 20 years ago – which was the last time she left the country.

Aleck’s husband uses a wheelchair, so they are looking at more accessible options like an Alaskan cruise.

“I’ve always wanted to try a cruise," Aleck said. “I didn’t expect this at all. It’s awesome. I felt so happy that they appreciate what I’ve been doing here all these years.”

This is all part of the reward based system in place at Ladysmith A&W. Rewards are given at one, three, five, and 10 years of service. The big jackpot is at 10 years of service, for which the reward is an all-inclusive trip. 

"This was a super fun and fulfilling experience! Hats off to Jason and Lori Kelland, the owners of the Ladysmith A&W," said Charley. 

"What a wonderful and generous way to show their appreciation to their employees for years of hard work and loyalty!"

Anna Kroupina

Anna Kroupina Journalist

Anna is OJ's newest member and she joins the team as a writer/reporter. She co-writes the daily news and covers events. Although she's new to the industry, pursuing a career path in travel/tourism has been a goal since her first family road trip to the Florida Keys sparked a desire to discover the world and this exhilarating, fast-paced industry.

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