Just eight months after the COVID pandemic claimed Australian bike travel company Compass Expeditions, they are restarting in 2022.
Bikes Abroad owner Brent Thomas and business partner Ben Willcox have bailed out the 13-year-old company and plan to release 2022 worldwide tour dates later this year.
When Compass Expeditions boss Mick McDonald reluctantly closed the company in June last year, he decided to fully refund all deposits for all future tours.
“We essentially ran out of money to continue the business but with these new financial partners we can go again,” Mick says.
“While some of our competitors mocked our unbusinesslike decision (to offer full refunds), we knew it was the ethical thing to do.
“The outpouring of support was stunning; we received endless emails, texts, and phone calls with some actually in tears at the news of our demise.
“We will never forget the words of encouragement and support that was shown to us, the Compass family, it was incredibly touching.”
Brent and Ben have since stepped up and invested in the company to keep it going.
Mick will retain an interest in the business and continue to drive Compass Expeditions along with some of the other former staff.
“We are so looking forward to once again visiting the amazing places we once rode and we look forward to catching up with Isaac, the Vic Falls Hotel gardener in Zimbabwe; Baktygul, the gracious B&B owner in Kyrgyzstan and the effervescent Otgoo, the manageress of the ger camp at Khovsguul Nuur, Mongolia,” their press statement says.
“The list of wonderful friends, peoples and experiences is endless.
“One thing remains certain however, despite a year of doom and gloom the world still remains an amazing place full of incredible people that will be desperate for us to return and return we will.”
Mick says they have decided not to have a rental fleet in Australia anymore instead focusing solely on the tour side of the business so are selling everything at bargain prices on 13 March 2021.