Sault Duty Free Takes Home Two Awards at Gala


The Sault Ste. Marie Duty Free is excited to announce that it won two awards and was nominated for four at the Frontier Duty Free Association Awards Gala in Toronto last week.

The FDFA, representing the interest of Canada’s duty free shops, hosts the Canadian duty free industry’s annual convention – an exclusive premier event for members. It is an opportunity for networking, exchange of ideas, and brand recognition for members.

The Sault Ste. Marie Duty Free took home the Marketing Award and the RCC Outstanding Land Border Duty Free Employee Award.

The submission for the Marketing Award was ‘Fishing For Partners in the North.’ It came about as part of the Duty Free’s 2018 strategy to enhance duty free shopping by focusing on partnership marketing, finding people or businesses that have access to the group you are targeting by already having a relationship with the marketplace, and getting them to introduce your business to their network.

This year, one of the Duty Free’s collaborations was with Watsons Windy Point Lodge on Lake Kabinakagami, whereby they created a summer fly-in fishing trip contest which ultimately benefited both parties.

The submission for the Employee Award was a profile on Wilma (Willie) Deplonty, highlighting her communication, leadership, teamwork, sales and customer service skills. The submission stated, “A memorable moment this year was when Willie took the time to go around the store with a couple from Australia pointing out all of our unique Canadian items; as they were looking to purchase gifts and souvenirs for family and friends. She spent quite a bit of time conversing and telling the story of each item to them. They were so amazed by the friendliness and product knowledge she displayed… When they returned home, they contacted the store by phone to make sure we understood what a special employee we had.”

“I am thrilled and overwhelmed to receive this recognition,” said Deplonty, “It was only possible on account of having a great workplace, collaborative co-workers, and amazing customers that make my job easy! Everyone deserves credit as it really is a team effort.”

Congratulations, Sault Ste. Marie Duty Free!