Baudinet received the Air New Zealand Supreme Award and the Cook Islands Tourism Marketing Award.
He says it’s important to encourage more local businesses to enter the tourism awards, which are sponsored by Cook Islands News. “It is a great development tool for our tourism economy,” he explains.
The online applications for the 2020 Awards close on Monday, December 9.
“First, the global recognition of these prestigious awards has been amazing for us at Explore.com and Jasons,” Baudinet says. “It helps provide a level of trust and support from the tourism industry.”
Secondly, he says it has opened up business opportunities and partnerships and encouraged them to set higher goals to do better and better each day.
“The awards have helped us to continue focusing on building Explore.com and Jasons to deliver a high quality product and service to our tourism industry.”
Baudinet says they plan to enter again this year for the 2020 Tourism Awards.
In doing so, they are pleased to announce they have been working on expanding their sustainable tourism efforts this year and will soon be launching their Green Heart Programme on Explore.com.
The programme will be the first of its kind for an online travel agency, Baudinet says, and will help showcase listed accommodation property's efforts towards sustainable tourism and encourage visitors to support sustainable tourism too.
“We are very passionate about supporting our tourism industry, but we also have to be conscious of the effects we have on our environment, culture, and people. So we need to support it in a sustainable way in order to meet the current needs as well as protect our future. The Green Heart Program works towards helping achieve this,” said Baudinet.
This year, there are 10 business categories which is the most business categories available since the Awards first started in 2009. Businesses can submit entries in as many business categories as they would like.
In addition to the business categories, there will be a number of Special Awards presented and all Accredited tourism businesses in the Cook Islands are eligible to enter.
The 2020 Awards will also feature a People’s Choice awards section, with winners being selected from the Cook Islands Tourism social media pages and this is the first time the awards will include a People’s Choice section.
After applications close next month, New Zealand-based judges will then start scoring the written applications and will visit the Cook Islands in February next year to do in-person interviews with all of the applicants.
The 2020 Air New Zealand Cook Islands Tourism Awards winners will later be announced live at the prestigious Awards Gala event in April.
The confidential online applications for the 2020 Air New Zealand Cook Islands Tourism Awards are available at https://cookislandstourismawards.awardsplatform.com