By Shaun Busuttil @shaunbusuttil25 Jan 2016With Australia Day here again, we think us Aussie travel agents have a lot to be thankful for with our travel industry being the best in the world.Here’s 8 reasons why we reckon the travel industry in ‘Straya’ rules. 1. Us Aussie travel agents have out-lived our Pacific rivalsTravel Managers experience Peru on a ten-day exclusive LAN Airlines & Prom Peru famil.Travel agents in the US have found it extremely challenging to compete with the online travel industry which is currently dominating the US travel market.Not so down under.Aussie travel agents are still a big part of Australian travel culture, with travel companies like Flight Centre growing and getting into overseas markets, selling its own products and even buying into aviation.Helloworld also don’t look like they’re slowing down anytime soon, with their recent merger with AOT a big boost for the brand and agents Australia wide.And with the rapid rise of mobile agent groups such as Travel Counsellors and Travel Managers adding another dimension to customers varying needs, quality Travel Agents have never been more relevant.Webjet famously showed us they’ve got no idea when it comes to the value of Travel Agents just the other week and didn’t that backfire. Sucked in.Viva Travel Agents – Viva Travel! 2. We have access to the best GDS systems in the worldOften deemed the less sexier aspect of the industry, us Aussie travel agents actually have the best travel booking technology at our finger tips.With features like Travelport’s latest upgrade enabling agents to make more bookings with less clicks and Sabre’s Red app helping us book qualified non-GDS options from all over the world with ease.And let’s not forget Amadeus who have a keen eye on future travel trends with their Travel tribes series forecasting the customer of today and tomorrow to help us learn and earn more. 3. We have (ahem) the hottest tourism ambassadors in the worldFrom Chris Hemsworth – aka “Thor”, to hotty Hugh Jackman and even old fave Lara Bingle (Where the bloody hell is she these days?) lending their pretty faces to the Australia brand, the Australian travel industry has a lot to be proud of – and leer at.Onya guys. I’ll cheers to that. 4. We’re home to many UNESCO sites and wonders of the world.From the Great Barrier Reef, Uluru, the Twelve Apostles, Sydney Opera House, Fraser Island and the Bungle Bungles… We have an endless array of stunning natural and man-made beauty on our doorstep.Not only do we get to go and explore these magical places on educational famils and events ourselves, we also get to showcase those amazing experiences and destinations, experiences and products to our fellow Aussies wanting to get to know our glorious country a little better.It’s not exactly a hard sell.We also get the rewarding benefit of our vast diversity of cultures and traditions to tap into as part of our cosmopolitan society and fellow industry colleagues we work with.We’re the envy of the world when it comes to this stuff and so we should be.Australia is ‘A’ for awesome. 5. We’re continually rewarded with incredible familsSpeaking of trips, who doesn’t like a free one?Us Aussie travel agents definitely do, and thankfully for us the Australian travel industry (and beyond) understand the importance of taking agents on famil trips so we can better sell that destination or product back home.From Contiki’s Rock Around the World to Bench International taking agents on a whirlwind Safari to Botswana (pictured above), there’s always a trip or incentive somewhere to get yourself on.Just do what you do best – sell travel! 6. We put on the best conferences. PeriodJust like the saying goes – “It’s always happy hour somewhere in the world”, equally there’s always a travel conference happening somewhere.From the hugely successful helloworld summit in Wellington last year and Lord of the Rings themed gala dinner, to the incredible Travellers Choice Annual Shareholders Conference in Melbourne – which was the brand’s biggest ever, the Australian travel industry sure know how to wine, dine and entertain agents and suppliers.And let’s not forget the Epic Annual Flight Centre Global gatherings… Of which the stories are legendary and where people like Gwyneth Paltrow just rock up for a chat.Apparently sometimes some people even do some work at conferences. Really? 7. We can throw a pretty epic Xmas party too…If there’s one thing the Australian travel industry know how to do really well, it’s put on a great party.Case in point: Flight Centre’s head office in Brisbane who annually celebrate the festive season by setting up a ‘Slip ‘n Slide’ inside the office for employees to feel like kids again.Concerned about health and safety? Don’t worry. That’s the Health and safety guy going down the slide in the pic. He’s fine. 8. Our airlines have a sense of humourAnd last but not least, we sure know how to laugh at ourselves down under.Take for example the recent wager between Qantas and Air New Zealand during the Rugby World Cup that saw the cabin crew of our iconic Aussie airline donned in “All black” after losing the bet.There’s not many other airlines in the world that would pull off a stunt like that. Sure they lost the bet. But they gained the nations respect.The true spirit of Australia. Nice one Qantas.We’ve a lot to be thankful for don’t you think? Happy Straya Day fellow industry friends!What did we miss? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below. Other stories you may likeOUTBACK TREK: Helloworld Travel supports the Royal Flying DoctorsThat time Frodo Baggins popped up at the ‘100% Pure Welcome’ launchAir New Zealand’s CEO Christopher Luxon resigns, his final day will be in Sept.