Chief Executive Officer.
Mark Goodwin has been in the travel profession for over 30 years, first as a tour guide, then rose to Director of operations with SAGA Holidays, the UK’s leading tour operator for the senior market, as Commercial Director with Rank Education, one of Britain’s leading educational operators, as Director of Operations with the Travel Organisation, the UK’s leading conference and incentive Operator and the last 16 years as President and CEO of Golden Compass. Over 20 years of his career have been involved with the educational Group Travel Market.
Mark is double Hons graduate from Kings College London in Modern Languages – French and German, an Associate of Kings College (Divinity) and a Fellow of the Institute of Travel & Tourism as well as a past Member of the Institute of Directors.
He has taught in France as well as spending significant periods of time in Germany, Italy and Austria as well as traveling extensively through almost all of Europe and North Africa.
“I look forward to welcoming your group to Europe or North Africa.” Mark Goodwin BA (Hons)(Lon), A.K.C, F.Inst.T.T.
Caroline qualified as a Bachelor of Music and Solicitor prior to becoming a Director of Golden Compass. Since 1995 Caroline has taken special responsibilities for ensuring quality and service to both clients and suppliers. These responsibilities have included coordinating, planning and delivering UK, Irish and European programs. Caroline has travelled extensively through the UK and Europe and has also visited Australia, Canada and the USA.
“I shall be pleased to work towards enhancing your travel adventures with Golden Compass.” Caroline Goodwin Solicitor, B.Mus (Hons), L.T.C.L, M.Inst.T.T.
Travel Account Manager.
James Goodwin, who has clearly inherited the family enthusiasm for travel, has been working for Golden Compass since leaving university. Although having graduated with a degree in Biochemistry from Cardiff, James has enjoyed having the opportunity to work in the travel trade and experience, firsthand, the excitement of seeing a carefully planned tour turn into someone’s cherished holiday.
James has already travelled extensively within Europe, having accompanied groups to France, Spain, Scotland, Ireland, Germany, Denmark, Switzerland, Austria, Slovenia, Italy, Malta, Greece and Egypt. He has also spent time in Canada, Singapore and Malaysia, in Sydney and Perth in Australia and has seen New Zealand from various death defying angles on an adventure tour.
Group Travel Coordinator.
Sue is your main contact on the ground in Australia. Originally from the UK, she has been involved in the travel profession for more than 30 years, firstly working in retail travel and later specialising in tailor made holidays for one of the UK’s largest tour operators. She met her husband, an Australian, in the UK and loves living in the beautiful Illawarra region of Wollongong. For the past 15 years, she has enjoyed working as an experienced group travel co-ordinator in the educational travel market.
Sue has travelled extensively through the UK, Europe, Australia and America and has also visited New Zealand, Egypt and Asia.
General Manager, Australia.
With the rapid expansion of Golden Compass Tours, Kerry was appointed General Manager, Australia in July 2014.
Kerry brings a diverse range of expertise and experience having held senior management roles in the travel and tourism sector for the past 18 years.
Raised in Wollongong, Kerry holds a Bachelor of Arts degree majoring in Accountancy and Legal Studies from the University of Wollongong. He also holds CPA status with the Australian Society of Certified Practising Accountants.
Kerry has travelled extensively throughout the UK, Europe, Asia and North America.
His wife Vi also has a background in the tourism industry. They live in Wollongong and have a young son, Daniel.
Australia & New Zealand Contact details:
Australia Freephone; 1800 132 385
New Zealand Freephone; 0800 132 385
Mail; PO Box 151, Albion Park, NSW 2527, Australia
UK Contact details:
Phone; +44 (0)1494 431122
Fax; +44 (0)1494 431144
Mail; 17 Elm Close, Amersham, Bucks, HP65DD, UK.
Golden Compass for Groups
If you organise travel for a group a minimum of 8 to 10 travellers, whether this be a U3A, Probus, Fine Art Society, Gardening, Food or Wine appreciation, opera lovers, scientific, professional, pilgrim or student group or any affinity or special interest group or, indeed, just a group of friends or colleagues, you are, of course, welcome to book on any of our existing programs. However, we also offer a specialised tailor made service for groups and are more than happy to customise an existing tour or to suggest a completely new program for your group to match your specific needs and requirements.
Whether your group is looking to explore the ancient sites of Persia, the Caucasus or the ‘Stans’, or to experience the mystique of Russia and the Baltics, we can create the tour to suit your group’s needs and requirements. We have excellent contacts in the UK and France but also arrange many outstanding tours to Ireland, Spain, Portugal, Morocco, Italy, Greece, Turkey, Austria, Switzerland, Germany, the Benelux Countries, Scandinavia, Iceland, Russia and Eastern Europe.
Whether you group’s interest is walking, skiing, sport, history and culture, religious heritage or food & wine, we can tailor make a program to suit your specific travel requirements and budget.
We work with a wide variety of accommodation suitable for all group needs ranging from 3 to 5 star hotels, villages de vacances in France and historical religious houses in Italy allowing us to tailor make a tour to match almost any group’s needs.
We only use top quality guides and lecturers who add that extra dimension to any visit to another country with a deep understanding of the culture, history and people as well as of any special interest of our group.
Golden Compass has the expertise and experience of creating specialist itineraries for many kinds of special interests groups. Please just ask us for details.
Golden Compass for the Individual Traveller
Golden Compass offers a range of programs for like-minded travellers. Each of our specially designed educational programs features a particular region or a special interest and we invite couples and individuals to join a small group of fellow like-minded travellers.
Our program groups generally range in size from 8 to 15 like-minded participants, and never more than 25. Naturally, these programs are subject to a minimum number in order to operate but, in most cases, this will be as low as 8 or 10 participants. We shall let you know as soon as any particular program departure becomes guaranteed.
Golden Compass was founded in 1995 by Mark and Caroline Goodwin and has been successfully operating for over 20 years.
Mark Goodwin has been in the travel profession for over 30 years, first as a tour guide, then rising to Director of operations with SAGA Holidays, the UK’s leading tour operator for the senior market, as Commercial Director with Rank Education, one of Britain’s leading educational operators, as Director of Operations with the Travel Organisation, the UK’s leading conference and incentive operator and the last 18 years as President and CEO of Golden Compass. Over 20 years of his career have been involved with the educational Group Travel Market.
Caroline Goodwin graduated as a professional musician and then solicitor and works alongside Mark in the design and operation of many specialist programs in the UK, Ireland, and throughout Europe.
Golden Compass is fully bonded in the UK by the Civil Aviation Authority and Golden Compass Tours is a member of the Australian Federation of Travel Agents (AFTA).
Golden Compass are pleased to be able to offer our unique UK and European small group educational travel programs directly to our Australian and New Zealand participants, with all tours priced in Australian and New Zealand dollars. We also have a Freephone national call number and a contact on the ground in Australia to help you with your enquiries. Your contact is still direct with Golden Compass, which gives you a significant saving in costs as we have cut out the middle man.