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Travel, tourism and leisure

"I’ve always had a fascination with the world around me, from reading as a child and discovering far-off wonders and different cultures and ways of life".

Jill Kennedy
Assistant Supervisor, Trailfinders

I studied geography throughout school and then went on to study a BSc in Geography at Queens University in Belfast. I studied both physical and human geography and the latter is where my interest really lay. A big part of the attraction of a geography degree was the fieldtrips and being already interested in travelling abroad, this appealed to me greatly. I also travelled when I was in school and university to Kenya, America, India and Canada.

What does your role entail?

Trailfinders is a multi-award winning independent travel company that specialises in tailor-made holidays. To date we have arranged travel for more than 12.5 million people. My role involves talking with people about their travel plans and helping them turn their ideas into reality; it feels like getting paid to do my hobby! I started in our worldwide department in our Belfast travel centre and then moved to join our specialist Bespoke Touring Department. As an Assistant Supervisor the majority of my day is spent with clients assisting them with their travel plans but I also run training and development with my colleagues as well as doing admin to ensure everything runs smoothly. Of course there’s the toughest part of the job where I have to go to our destinations and inspect our hotels!

How does geography help you in your everyday work?

A good geographical knowledge is useful in my job to ensure trips are planned in a logistically sensible way. My extensive experience of overseas geography and my resulting knowledge, enthusiasm and passion for travel and different parts of the world is always appreciated by clients. The love for travel and geography tend to go hand in hand and the organisational and analytical skills you learn during a geography degree will certainly be put to good use in a career in travel.

Other geographers working in this sector include

  • Conservation Projects Coordinator, Zoological
    Society of London, Indonesia
  • Educational Travel Consultant
  • Expedition Manager, Wilderness Expertise
  • Head of Centre, Field Studies Council
  • Incident Response Manager, World Challenge
  • Managing Director, MyDestination Galicia
  • Travel Writer and Broadcaster


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