All-night queueing paid off for lucky travellers today as they snapped up special £10 tickets to Australia.

The deals were available at eight branches of the STA Travel company on a first-come-first-served basis, with 150 of the £10 one-way tickets on offer.

First through the doors of the company's office in Victoria in central London today were sports science graduate Rosie Emeny, 22, and her politics graduate friend Ashleigh McPherson, also 22.

The pair had been queueing outside since Sunday, snatching what sleep they could in a pop-up bed on the pavement.

Clutching their tickets for travel to Australia starting on November 25, the pair agreed the long wait was worth it.

Ms Emeny, from Romford, Essex, said: "It's marvellous. We'll be stopping off in Hong Kong first and then we'll be spending Christmas and the new year in Sydney.

"After that, I'll be looking for some work, possibly in an outdoor job"

Ms McPherson, from Chadwell Heath in east London, said: "It was a great relief when we finally got the tickets. Neither of us have been to Australia before and we're really looking forward to it."

Fifth in the queue at Victoria was 23-year-old receptionist Grace Folan.

After getting her ticket to fly to Brisbane on November 18, she said: "I've not had much sleep, having got here on Sunday. But we had a laugh in the queue and now I'm off to Australia for the first time."

STA hit on the initiative to mark its 30th birthday and to repeat the £10 assisted-package scheme that saw thousands of Britons emigrate to Australia in the immediate post-war years.

Today's offer was open to people with a valid Australian working holiday visa.

At the Victoria office today, STA Travel group managing director John Constable said: "The interest has been incredible. It's such a great offer."

The 150 tickets were snapped up at the eight shops within 50 minutes of going on sale this morning.

At Victoria, only around a third of the near-100 queuers managed to get the £10 tickets. The unlucky ones stayed on to take advantage of other special cut-price Australia deals on offer just for today.