|Industry||Tour Operator Activities|
|Founded||April 25, 1996Northampton, Northamptonshire, United Kingdomin|
|Headquarters||New Mill, New Mill Lane, |
Number of locations
|Total assets||£59,753,000 (2018)|
Number of employees
Audley Travel is a travel company based in the UK based in Witney, Oxfordshire, with offices in London, Boston and Toronto. The company specialises in tailor-made travel; according to the Financial Times it is the largest operator in this market.
The company was founded in a Northampton post office in 1996 by Craig Burkinshaw and John Brewer, both graduates of the London School of Economics. The pair originally offered tours of Vietnam, advertising in The Sunday Times. In 2006 the company moved to their current headquarters at New Mill in Witney, Oxfordshire, and tourism executive Ian Simkins joined the company as CEO in 2011. In 2014 the company opened an office in London and a US office in Boston, Massachusetts after it discovered 20% of its web traffic was coming from the United States. It arranges holidays in 87 countries, with South East Asia (especially India), Africa, Latin America and the US its main destinations.
In 2012, equity firm Equistone Partners Europe invested a majority stake in Audley Travel during a management buyout. Equistone exited its investment in 2015, selling its share of the company to a private equity firm 3i.
Audley Travel has been recognised for numerous achievements as a company. The company has won awards including:
- Guardian/Observer Travel Awards 2006: Best Tour Operator (Mainstream)
- The Sunday Times 100 Best Small Companies to Work For 2006-2018
- Telegraph Green Travel Awards 2007: Luxury Tour Operator of the Year
- Guardian/Observer Travel Awards 2008: Best Tour Operator (Small)
- Conde Nast Traveller Readers’ Travel Awards: First Place Specialist Tour Operator 2010
- Wanderlust Travel Awards 2011: Best Website
- Wanderlust Travel Awards 2012 and 2019: Top Tour Operator
- Telegraph Travel Awards 2013: Best Tour Operator
- Guardian/Observer Travel Awards 2014: Best Tour Operator (Small)
- The Oxfordshire Business Awards 2014: Employer of the Year
- The Times and Sunday Times Travel Awards 2016 and 2019: Best Luxury Tour Operator
- Telegraph Travel Awards 2016, 2017 and 2019: Best Tour Operator
- Which? Recommended Travel Agents
Charity and philanthropy
Audley supports a number of social and environmental charities and projects around the world. In January 2020, the company was granted the Travelife Partner award in recognition of its efforts to improve sustainability and corporate social responsibility. Travelife is the leading international sustainability certification in the travel sector.
The company fundraises for a specific charity, which is chosen biannually by its staff. Staff are also given a half-day volunteering allowance to support a local charity of their choice.
- Audley Travel Group Limited, company number 03190720 Companies House
- Blackden, Richard (December 21, 2015). "3i bets on high-end tourism with Audley Travel". Financial Times.
- Holgate, Ben (October 9, 2014). "Witney travel company becomes a global holidays specialist". The Herald series.
- "Audley Travel: Craig Burkinshaw". Startups.co.uk. October 3, 2013.
- "Equistone buys stake in Audley Travel". Travel Weekly.
- Ratcliffe, Madeline (21 December 2015). "3i hopes Audley Travel will take off with £159m investment". CityAM.
- "Travel Awards 2006 winners". The Guardian. October 7, 2006.
- "Company Profile - Audley Travel". Best Companies.
- Starmer-Smith, Guy (January 12, 2008). "Green travel: the winners and losers".
- "Travel Awards 2008 winners". The Guardian. October 12, 2008.
- "Readers' Travel Awards 2010 – Travel Companies: Specialist Tour Operators". Conde Nast Traveller.
- "Wanderlust Travel Awards 2011: Winners Announced". Wanderlust Magazine. Archived from the original on August 25, 2017.
- "Wanderlust Travel Awards 2012: Winners Announced". Wanderlust Magazine. Archived from the original on August 25, 2017.
- "Telegraph Travel Awards 2013: The winners in full". The Daily Telegraph. November 27, 2013.
- "Travel Awards 2014 winners". The Guardian. November 22, 2014.
- Quail, Alex (June 26, 2014). "Oxfordshire Business Awards 2014". zestdigital.com. Archived from the original on August 25, 2017.
- "The Times and Sunday Times Travel Awards 2016". The Times. September 17, 2016.
- "Telegraph Travel Awards: your favourite airlines, hotel groups, tour operators and destinations". The Telegraph. April 12, 2016.
- "The best and worst travel agents". Which?. 2016.
- "Travelife for Tour Operators and Travel Agents". www.travelife.info. Retrieved 2020-01-30.