Travel Place — FIT FIT FIT | TravelResearchOnline

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Travel Place — FIT FIT FIT

I’m not certain when this happened but my business  has become almost entirely Foreign Independent Travel, or FIT!  Oh I yearn for a simple RSSC or Azamara cruise booking with a little pre/post package and some air. Some days it is overwhelming.

Here’s what I have going today with dozens more that do not need action this minute:

  • France – roundtrip air tickets to Paris, roundtrip train tickets to Cannes, a Cannes hotel stay and  insurance. The clients are actually visiting family so no touring involved – but still, it’s four vendors rolled into one trip.
  • London/Paris – open jaw air tickets, train between cities, hotels in each, day trips from London to both Highclere and the McLaren Tech Center, private tour with guide of the British Museum and the Victoria & Albert. In Paris – private tour of Versailles, and private shopping tour in Paris, insurance and transfers everywhere.
  • Florence and Cinque Terre with Geneva and London – yes, that’s right – multiple vendors all over the place; I can’t even begin to type them out.

This is just a sample of what is going on. Through the end of the year, I have a ton of FITs like this and exactly eight sea cruises, six river cruises (and I’m tempted to call these “FIT” because of complicated pre/post tours), one escorted tour, and three – that’s right, three all-inclusive packages in the Caribbean!

It seems to me that this started about two years ago;  and while I’m not 100% certain, I think that I drove myself into this. I think that clients who came in undecided (sea, land, foreign, domestic, escorted, etc), were given a hard sell on “experiential” travel – by me!  This was not intentional but would have come out of the initial interview to qualify the clients.

The bottom line is that these bookings are producing more revenue than the “off the shelf” stuff out of a brochure.

But..am I happier doing this?  I’m not certain.  I’m finding that I have a lot more on my mind and my internal to-do list often accompanies me home from the office. I also find that I am suddenly working harder, not smarter, than  I would like to.  I know that I am talented at this and that I am producing fantastic vacations for my clients.  I suspect that  years of listening to Nolan Burris has brought me to this.  What I don’t know is whether I am happy doing this! Do you struggle with your business mix?

Mindy Milliron has been a professional travel consultant since 1996 working in suburban Washington, DC. She specializes in personalized vacations and exotic adventures. Mindy has earned her CTA, and is certified as a specialist luxury travel and destination weddings. She has been employed by three agencies and her current agency is in the process of shifting affiliations from American Express to Travel Leaders.

  2 thoughts on “Travel Place — FIT FIT FIT

  1. I enjoyed your article about FIT, FIT,FIT

    Recently, I too have had an abundance of FIT’s to keep me busy. Fortunately, being a member of the Signature Travel Network helps a great deal in giving me recommended Destination Specialists at locations my clients will be traveling. This keeps me from having to do all the leg work. Of course there are things that I attend to such as air or train tickets, etc., but for the most part I give the Destination Specialist suggested dates and places my clients want to see and then wait for them to put an itinerary together. This allows me time to work on the easy stuff.

    Natalie Johnson

  2. Dawn Smock says:

    Mindy I feel your pain. I have used June Young at the Orlando GoGo Worldwide Vacations office many times with great
    results and they pay us 14% on the package, air, transfers, hotels, tours and insurance if you need it however, not sure if you have a Travel Insurance provider that you prefer or not we use Travelex and they are amazing. They are based on cost of the trip only not age. The other great thing about GOGO other than June is that they pay EFT commissions once
    final payment is made on the trip not after the client travels like everyone else. I email her what I need and she sends
    me back the quote for trip all put together which of course you can change, upgrade, downgrade, add additional commission of which you receive 90% of in addition to the 14%. Email is youngj@gogowwv.com Good Luck

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