Getting Oil And Gas Personnel Places Where Others Fear To Tread

Jul 19, 2012, 07:00 ET from Avia International Travel/HRG

THE WOODLANDS, Texas, July 19, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Avia International Travel/HRG is thriving in an industry which many experts say is dying. As more and more travel agencies are closing their doors, Avia International is hiring, expanding, and poised for tremendous growth.


The folks at Avia International Travel have never been to most of the places they send their clients. And that's okay because the firm—headquartered in Houston—sends people to places most don't want to go.

Avia International/HRG serves the travel needs of the energy, offshore, and marine services industry. The firm moves not just executives, but the people who work on oil rigs and ships. Avia gets drillers, derrick hands, geologists, and engineers to some hard-to-reach places. A typical morning might include routing a Ukrainian rigger to Luanda, Angola; an Irish machinist to Port Harcourt, Nigeria; and a Saudi engineer to Malabo, Equatorial Guinea. No basking on beaches or sipping pina-coladas for these travelers.

When Antonella Ballatori, president, launched the firm in 1997, oil was $10 a barrel and the travel industry was in turmoil. Many travel agencies were merging, shrinking, or closing, yet Avia flourished. The agency has experienced tremendous growth, yet maintained an exceptionally high level of service to their clients. So how did the company succeed?


Getting people to oil rigs and ships around the world requires an expertise not easily duplicated. Crews regularly cycle on and off rigs and ships. Crews must often get to areas where flights are limited, governments are unstable, and visa restrictions are complex. Avia's agents must have a minimum of 15 years experience in international travel. Their expertise goes beyond booking tickets and hotels. Agents advise clients on the right visas, vaccinations and worldwide events that may impact their travel. "Our employees are the Special Forces of the travel industry, and our clients are the Special Forces of their industries," Ballatori says. "We understand that many of our travelers make huge sacrifices, leaving their families for extended periods. And there's one aspect we take more seriously than all others: getting our clients home safely."


The company, which also has a London office, provides global 24 hour emergency travel service by an Avia employee. When you call Avia, you always reach an international travel expert ready to assist in any emergency and knowledgeable of your company travel policy. When traveling to the remote areas of the energy world, a traveler stranded at the airport needs travel assistance fast so they look to Avia, whose average hold time is under 20 seconds, to assist them quickly.


An affiliation with the Hogg Robinson Group (HRG), which has offices in more than 120 countries, over $16 billion in sales, and a staff of 12,000,further expands Avia's global reach. It allows Avia International Travel to better serve its multinational clients and deliver lower costs through combined buying power.

For more information, visit

Ilia Fox, Marketing Manager
Avia International Travel/HRG
(281) 436-5031

SOURCE Avia International Travel/HRG