Published on : Thursday, November 12, 2020
Monique Ponfoort has been appointed as the Chief Executive of Australian-owned Aurora Expeditions, marking the beginning of an exciting new chapter in small-ship expedition travel. Ponfoort brings with her a wealth of experience and expertise with a career spanning more than 25 years in the travel and cruise industry, including Qantas, Jetset, Helloworld, and most recently, seven years in expedition cruising managing the Asia Pacific market.
Her addition to Aurora Expeditions will be highly beneficial at a time when the company is expanding with a brand new, purpose-built small expedition ship Sylvia Earle scheduled to sail on her maiden voyage in November 2021 – a sister ship to the award-winning Greg Mortimer – and an array of forward-thinking Aurora Expeditions initiatives on the horizon. Monique is both optimistic and excited for the future of expedition travel.
Speaking about her appointment Ponfoort shared that she is humbled to have the opportunity to lead a passionate and dynamic team who strive constantly to deliver the best product, service and experiences to the family of global expeditioners. She stated that despite the challenges facing the global travel and cruise industry in 2020, many loyal and repeat guests have informed that they are eager to set sail again, and hence the cruise line is excited and ready to welcome them back on board once international borders reopen.
She further added that along with the new expedition ship – named after renowned marine biologist, oceanographer and explorer Sylvia Earle, Aurora Expeditions is also launching a host of dynamic programs featuring new global itineraries which will take expeditioners beyond the Polar Regions to some of the most biodiverse corners of the planet and a new Deposit Protection Scheme. She also mentioned that the company has a very exciting business growth ahead as they prepare to take delivery of its second purpose-built expedition ship Sylvia Earle.