FUN OVER FIFTY – as the name succinctly suggests – is a tourist company aimed expressly at the senior market in Australia and provides for them a selection of all-inclusive package holidays to every State and Territory as well as many others abroad.
The company, based in Burbank, has now been running for 17 years with three generations of one family involved in the day-to-day running of one of Australia’s leading tour providers.
A link with Redland Football Club player Harrison Hunkin and his parents, Janelle and Adrian, has resulted in Fun Over Fifty taking out a Gold Sponsorship with the Bombers for 2020 in a move which has been universally acclaimed.
While the company has now grown to include all types and classes of travel and all types and classes of accommodation it started more from necessity than meticulously planned invention.
The meticulous planning came a little later.
You see the CEO Toni Brennan struggled to find work, when in 2002, she moved from Central Queensland to Brisbane.
Perceived as a country girl lacking in official qualifications, she found no-one willing to give her an opportunity regardless of her lengthy experience working in resorts on the Capricorn Coast.
Maybe it was a “Pretty Woman” moment, the words “big mistake” could be offered to those who rejected her applications as Toni is now a powerhouse within the Queensland tourism industry.
Her reaction was to set out to create her own products and she started pairing rail travel with resort stays on the Capricorn Coast.
This was organised from her sewing table in the laundry of her own home.
Each year the portfolio grew, taking on new modes of transport, heading to more and more destinations and growing her passenger numbers considerably.
To date Fun Over Fifty has received 18 awards (Qld and National) over the past three years and last year was officially recognised as the best in Australia by winning Gold at the Australian Tourism Awards for Eco Tourism.
“Tours include travel by coach, rail and air with our specialty being luxury Gold and Opulent Diamond Class coach tours,” Toni said.
“All itineraries have been meticulously planned to ensure guests have the time of their lives.
“The focus is on fun and tours include great entertainment, exceptional experiences hosted by expert local guides, delicious food, and the ever-present support of a friendly and professional on-board crew.”
The company recently won the Banksia Sustainability Award for “Our People and Planet” program, which is at the forefront of innovation and sustainability within the Australian tourism industry and beyond.
“We are committed to protecting and nurturing our people and our natural assets; our goal is to enrich the lives of locals in the areas through which we travel and preserve the environment that we explore.
“Our people and Planet Program, which incorporates the Fun Over Fifty Green Bank, Small Change for Change and Green and Gold Army initiatives, is at the forefront of enabling us to give back to the communities we visit.
“Guest donations combined with Fun Over Fifty contributions have enabled us to provide support to many charities of varying sizes across Australia focusing on community and environmental projects.
“Office staff and guests have planted more than 14,000 trees and have worked on rejuvenation projects and herb and vegie garden projects in both their free time and when on tour,” Toni said.
Toni’s husband Rob Archibald, who is Manager Coach Operations, said the link between Toni and Janelle played a part in the sponsorship being finalised.
“We have known Harrison for some time and watched him play at Redlands from time to time.
“His mother and my wife grew up together attending horse shows and events and we still socialise today, with Jan and Adrian obviously both having an interest in AFL,” Rob said.
He considered the arrangement with Redland and Fun Over Fifty would prove to be a benefit to both.
“We are aware of the demographic of the Redlands/Cleveland areas as opposed to other regions and together with the common interest of Aussie Rules, we hope the sponsorship will benefit all.”
The unique selling points of Fun Over Fifty is exactly that – having fun – backed by all-inclusive tours that are fully escorted and inclusive of 4 and 5-star accommodation, meals and sightseeing.