Ex­pe­ri­ence, in most cases, will not be to­tal

South Waikato News - - NEWS -

The demise of a com­pany that is­sued gift vouch­ers for ad­ven­ture tourism nearly ex­tin­guished a Toko­roa woman’s dy­ing wish.

To­tal Ex­pe­ri­ence’s liq­ui­da­tion means $250,000 worth of po­ten­tial hot-air bal­loon flights, go-kart races, dol­phin swim­ming trips and other fun ex­pe­ri­ences will prob­a­bly not go ahead.

One dis­ap­pointed Kiwi cus­tomer, Chris­tine Al­ley from Toko­roa, said she had or­gan­ised do­na­tions from friends to help ter­mi­nal can­cer pa­tient Anne Hill cross off a hot-air bal­loon ride from a list of things she wanted to do be­fore she died.

Ms Hill died the week be­fore her flight was sched­uled, on De­cem­ber 12, but her hus­band Bruce in­tended to make the flight over the Waikato with his daugh­ter in her me­mory, some time in Fe­bru­ary.

Dis­mayed that Mr Hill would no longer be able to ful­fil his wife’s wish, Ms Al­ley con­tacted Busi­nessDay, which found that Kiwi Bal­loon Com­pany owner Mark Brown was will­ing to hon­our the voucher be­cause pay­ment had been pro­cessed be­fore To­tal Ex­pe­ri­ence’s liq­ui­da­tion.

But be­cause Mr Brown is a small op­er­a­tor, he would not be able to ab­sorb the ap­prox­i­mately $5000 of flights that had been booked but for which he would not re­ceive any pay­ment from To­tal Ex­pe­ri­ence. The Auck­land com­pany, reg­is­tered in 2003, is owned by Bri­tish-based pair Adrian and Jan­ice Dewe.

The com­pany con­nects cus­tomers with leisure and tourism op­er­a­tors na­tion­wide.

The Dewes op­er­ate sim­i­lar com­pa­nies in the United States, Canada and Aus­tralia. Stuff.co.nz

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