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Travel Update: COVID-19

Meet APT Cruise Director – Jude Cathcart

Speaking from experience, Jude knows those not-to-be-missed holiday moments that live on long after you return home. She tells us why her on-tour tips are well worth a listen.

How long have you worked with APT?

10 years – I’ve worked in Europe in Operations, Australia in Operations, Marketing and Sales and for six years back in Europe as a Cruise Director and Expedition Leader. I enjoy the great team I work with and the friendships I've made.

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What does your job entail and what do you love most about it?
My job is to deliver people's dreams.
The most rewarding moment is at the end of a cruise when someone comes up and thanks you for the most amazing two weeks of their life. To see the smiles on their faces but also when they are sad to say goodbye to the crew, fellow passengers and to you, that's when you know it has truly been a memorable and special time on board. To achieve this we need to do our jobs exceptionally well, be super organised, professional, caring and to establish trust. If we are relaxed and happy, our guests will be too. It's all about delivering the dream, the unforgettable!

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What has been your favourite on-tour moment and why?

Wow, so many of varying degrees! From a 70th wedding anniversary, to special birthday celebrations and of course my favourite is always seeing the faces of guests as they walk out of the Concert at Palais Lichtenstein in Vienna. The look of absolute awe, especially for those guests who were hesitant to go. I always say, unless they have a doctor's certificate to stay on board, everyone must go. One gentleman, a New Zealand farmer, said he had no plan on going at all, but came and hugged me after with tears in his eyes and thanked me for making him go.

What does travel mean to you?

Broadening horizons, learning about different cultures and experiencing life through different eyes. My passion is history, so I love going to destinations to learn about the stories of civilisations and also about natural history. Adventure travel is also a favourite of mine, trekking and cycling, which I've done in many incredible, stunning countries. On the back of a bike is the best way to truly appreciate a country.

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What destination is 'calling' you?

Antarctica and Africa are still on my list, as well as a return to South America, especially Patagonia and Chile. Bhutan is one destination I’ve cycled and trekked through but I would also love to return.