Armchair Traveller

Armchair Traveller

Meet the Pom who won the 'best job in the world'

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Ben Southall of the UK has just been announced as the successful applicant for what was dubbed 'the best job in the world'.

His new official title is 'Caretaker of the Islands', his new home is a luxury villa on Hamilton Island, and your tax dollars will probably contribute to his $150,000 salary ... for the six month stint of snorkelling, diving and blogging about the beauty of the Great Barrier Reef for Tourism Queensland.

Get to know Ben by checking out his audition video:

He seems like he could be a bit of a tosser, but he's certainly enthusiastic and a mad traveller. Time will tell if he has what it takes, but I'm surprised by his appointment; I assumed the gig would go to a drop dead hottie ... obviously Tourism Queensland has more integrity than I assumed!

Do you think he seems to be an alright kinda guy? Do you think the job should've been granted to an Aussie?

User comments
Trust!!! Ben It was Pom who built this a POM!!!!
BEN a big congratulations to you! I'm an Australian and to be honest, the best man won. Negative comments come from envy and jealousy. Just enjoy your wonderful job and save some money.!
What a very clever choice the position was after all for tourism. Also for all the Anti-POM people. It was due for the most part to the POM's as convicts that built this country. I'm sure there were many Aussie applicants but the position was advertised worldwide and the powers that be obviously feel they have selected the best person for the position regardless of race or culture. We are a Multi Cultural country and supposedly pride ourselves on this so why go after Ben because of his place of Birth.. Who's Whinging now?.............
I am happy for him and as an Aussie who gives everyone a fair chance will be reading his blogs, clearly he was voted in by the panel to be the best for the job, all you negative people out there were not on the panel so why judge something or someone that you know nothing about! How unfair you all are, I am disappointed to read some callous remarks, you are judging him and you dont even know the fella. I am a proud Aussie, imagine what it will do for the rest of the world to see this person reporting on our beautiful homeland. You are all condemming him before he gets going, he chose to enter a competition which was cleary open to everyone in the world, and now he has won you are all bagging him. Its not his fault he was chosen as the winner.
As always we are great suckers...give jobs to outsiders while pushing the unemployement figures up. Keep up the good work.............Ben enjoy our hard earned money for nothing...................
Well of course they're not going to choose an Aussie for this job - the purpose is to get international publicity - who's going to listen to an Aussie harp on about their own country! It will be great to see things from a pom's perspective.
I say good on him for getting the position on Hamilton Island. I don't think it matters if was an Aussie or a Pom who got the job, even though I would rather it be an Aussie. As long as he gets the job done and isn't forgetting that he is there to promote the island and QLD, I think all will be well. If it does go pear shaped, I hope the runner up was an Aussie and they'll do a great job as a replacement. Working on an island is a dream job for anyone. I lived and worked on one for 10 months and it was fun. Even if you don't get the $150,000 for 6 months of work, I would highly recommend giving island life a go!
Most of the posts here are pushing the idea that it should've been an Aussie chosen to promote THE REEF. That would have been missing the point. It should be perfectly obvious to everyone that the marketing message is directed at people outside Australia. I am a Queenslander living in Hong Kong and it's all over the news here and elsewhere around the globe (and has been since the start of the campaign). This was global marketing at its best. Way to go QLD Toursim!!
The whole point of a tourism campaign is to encourage NEW people from OTHER places in the world to come and visit your beautiful country. So, then, to have a NEW person from anOTHER country here to tell everyone in the rest of the world just how amazing Hamilton Island is, and what made him come here was an inspired decision. Far betther than an Australian telling the rest of the world how much better their country is and asking why the bloody hell they're not here already. Seems a bit conceited don't you think? Grow up Austalia... This it a bold and inspired move towards a campaign that may actually work!
Let me guess...? everyone who comment against a "pom" is an aussie?-typical I was born in the UK but moved here when i was 2 -im now 22 so im pretty much an aussie-ive grew up aussie, i do everything bloody aussie ok, but u all need to really stop with this POM bullsh*t. D u even know what it means? POM= Prisoner of her MAJESTY...and by my recollection, u were the convicts, U were the instead of the jealous and angst that it was an aussie, let the traveller who probably will appreciate and sell it alot more do his job-cos he will do it well! Good on ya ben and good luck!

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