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Any action is often better than no action, especially if you have been stuck in an unhappy situation for a long time. If it is a mistake, at least you learn something, in which case it’s no longer a mistake. If you remain stuck, you learn nothing.

Eckhart Tolle, The Power of Now

I am a believer in action. So many times in my professional career, I have been faced with tough decisions, typically arising out of a crisis of varied sorts. The Gulf war in 1990, 9/11, SARS in the early 2000’s, having to start a career over in 2004, the real estate crisis of 2008, Covid-19 in 2020.

It isn’t like I had a real choice. In 2004, I actually, for a short time, contemplated giving up on the travel industry and going back into law. I was 47 and, fortunately, nobody in the small town I was living in at the time wanted to hire a middle-aged attorney. Read the rest of this entry »

The Trouble for Conservation Without Tourism


One of the many side effects of COVID on the travel industry is that the loss of revenue from tourists is causing trouble in places where the economy relies to some extent on tourism dollars.

The chain reactions set off by the cessation of a stream of income can have devastating effects on the lives of people all along those economic chains.

One of the areas where the loss of tourism revenue has particularly devastating effects is conservation in Africa. We are at a unique time in history where many of the world’s most magnificent species of animals are on the verge of extinction. A significant part of the efforts being made to protect them is funded by tourism companies. Read the rest of this entry »


Jennifer Walker has been hit by Covid-19 twice. No, she hasn’t actually had it herself. But two of her clients have — and she feels their pain.

Walker had two trips in the works for “senior ladies” when the coronavirus hit. One was supposed to sail Viking Ocean to Bali and Beyond; she died right before final payment. The other had a multigenerational trip to Hawaii booked for 2020, which Walker was in the process of moving to 2021, and was talking about a European river cruise for her anniversary. Read the rest of this entry »

The Fear Factor


Halloween is just days away, and perhaps never in the history of travel have I felt our industry bearing a higher level of fear. Coronavirus new cases are on the rise. The federal government has failed to agree on a new stimulus package at the time of this writing. And the earliest we are likely to see widespread distribution of vaccines is the latter part of 2021.

Some of the fear about our businesses is legitimate. Take the stimulus package. The economy needs a boost, especially the travel industry. The slow growth we are experiencing is not enough to sustain hundreds of thousands of jobs that are barely hanging on, let along bring back the tens of millions of jobs lost due to the precipitous drop off in travel. Read the rest of this entry »

COVID-19 Has Made Travel Insurance a Necessity


Before COVID-19, many travelers felt that purchasing travel insurance was an added fee that was not needed. They were not worried about their non-refundable deposits for airfare, tours, or accommodations being affected by something out of their control. With the ongoing pandemic, travelers now seek protection more than ever for the non-refundable portions of their trip. What caused this behavior change?

In a word, uncertainty. The world we live in today is filled with questions that didn’t exist a few months ago. Will my travel provider be in business? What happens if an outbreak of COVID-19 occurs at my destination? What if I get COVID-19 on my trip? Read the rest of this entry »

American Cruise Lines’ 2021 Mississippi Season


American Cruise Lines has planned a big season on the Mississippi for 2021; introducing two new modern riverboats, a brand new Music Cities cruise between Nashville and Memphis, fifteen new shore excursions up-and-down the River, all-private transportation on shore, and new enrichment programs on board. From late February through December, American’s new modern riverboats and classic paddlewheelers will ply the Mighty River from St. Paul to New Orleans. Read the rest of this entry »

Persist Until You Succeed


… it is not given to me to know how many steps are necessary in order to reach my goal. Failure I may still encounter at the thousandth step, yet success hides behind the next bend in the road. Never will I know how close it lies unless I turn the corner.” – Og Mandino, The Greatest Salesman in the World

I miss being alone on center stage. I miss the sharpness of the spotlight and the vastness of the venue. Most of all, I miss the people in their seats curious with anticipation. They think, ‘who is this guy, does he have a clue about the challenges in my world and will I feel any different when he’s done?Read the rest of this entry »

When travel comes roaring back. You had better be prepared. While no one is beating down my doors right now; if experience is any teacher, travel will take off once this pandemic is in our rear-view mirror. You can be sure your competitors will be ready. But will you?  Here’s what you can do to make sure you have a piece of that pie when it is served again! Read the rest of this entry »

Leading travel market research consultancy Longwoods International recently released a study showing that some 58% of Americans planning fall travel would choose to travel on a road trip. Continuing to ride the road trip trend through this fall, AmericanTours International (ATI) has partnered with Travel South USA to develop and market road trip packages featuring the Carolina and Georgia coasts – perfect destinations with exhilarating outdoor experiences for travelers this autumn.

ATI’s partnership with Travel South is in collaboration with Visit North Carolina, Discover South Carolina, and Explore Georgia, who together are aiming to inspire travel professionals to plan their clients’ next road trip journey to their stunning coastal destinations. Read the rest of this entry »

This Year’s Best Travel Camera & Smartphone


Since you aren’t going on a vacation this year, this holiday season may be the time to upgrade your travel camera or smartphone. The leading companies, Canon and Apple, have ensured you’ll have devices to choose from that were only available to professionals as late as last year.

The newest consumer cameras have Auto controls that can evaluate a photo opportunity, decide in a fraction of a second what the settings should be, and produce flawless images when you click the shutter. The price of cameras with huge sensors – capable of creating poster-sized photos and photos of the proverbial “black cat in a coal bin at night” – has dropped sharply. A year ago, these cameras cost over $4,000. Now they are as low as $999. Read the rest of this entry »


Let’s overcome barriers to entry. It’s time for you to start enjoying good audio content. This is the first network of podcasts built for the travel professional. I’m extremely proud of our content and the feedback has been outstanding. I want you to enjoy it too. Let’s bust some podcast myths and get you tuned into podcasts too! Read the rest of this entry »


Regular readers will be familiar with my 4-word mantra of ‘Travel less, See more’ which you’ll find resonates extremely well with clients who have been to Britain before. Being anglophiles, they will represent some of the pent-up demand you should be targeting for when planes start crisscrossing the pond.

While it is just 281 miles from London Heathrow to Penzance, it’s still a fair distance to travel especially if you’ve spent 8-11 hours flying through 8 time zones to get here, with jetlag still waiting in the wings. In a normal year, there are flights from LHR to Newquay (70 minutes). Hopefully services will be restored sooner rather than later.

Another option is taking the Heathrow Express to Paddington for a night in London before returning back to the station for an early departure, a 4.5-hour direct train ride to the cathedral city of Truro. The coastal town of Penzance is just 30 minutes further down the line. Letting the train, and the well-stocked buffet car, take the strain makes a great deal of sense for travel in both directions. Here come the conversation-starting tour suggestions.

Read the rest of this entry »

Who Said That?


In over four years of writing a daily column for Travel Research Online, I have never done what I am about to do. (Don’t you just love the suspense.) Today, being Friday, this is as good a day as ever to try something new—Curve Ball Friday.

No, I am not going to write this article while riding an elephant naked down Atlantic Avenue in Delray Beach, Florida. (I’m just wondering after reading that last sentence, are you envisioning a naked elephant, or an old guy with no clothes on? Just wondering.)

No, I am simply going to share a few of my favorite quotes with you. A few words of wisdom that have me pausing in reflection before moving on. This is a first. I hope you will find it to be as exciting and worthwhile as I do. Read the rest of this entry »

6 Things to Know Before Visiting Costa Rica During the Pandemic


Costa Rica announced the reopening of its border to visitors from all the U.S. states starting on November 1st.

The country began the first phase of its reopening on August 1st after almost 5 months of closure due to the pandemic. Since that day, Costa Rica opened its airports, the Juan Santamaría International Airport (SJO), and Daniel Oduber International Airport (LIR), to citizens from Canada, the United Kingdom, and Europe.

Arriving visitors must follow the entry requirements established by the government that are negative COVID-19 test and travel insurance. Read the rest of this entry »


As Senior Vice President of Global Business, Christian is responsible for strategic global partnerships and new business development. In this role, he delivers exceptional service to Collette’s travel partners. He is also responsible for leading the business and growth efforts in our international offices located in Australia, the United Kingdom and Canada. Christian joined Collette in 2007. He holds an MBA from Babson College and a Bachelor’s degree in business from the University of New Hampshire. 

Active in the local community, Christian serves on the board of City Year Rhode Island. He is an avid sports fan and is passionate about team sports, especially youth activities. In his free time, Christian can be found spending time with his wife and three children. Read the rest of this entry »

La Fortuna and Arenal in Costa Rica

There’s a reason that La Fortuna remains one of the most visited areas in Costa Rica. Simply put, it is paradise. This small town, located in an area named the same, is a fortune of relaxation and allowing the richness of life to wash over the traveler. With a magnificent volcano as a backdrop, La Fortuna’s lush natural surroundings and laid-back atmosphere lets the traveler settle into a worthwhile vacation.

Read the rest of this entry »

Sometimes your next big adventure is only a short drive away. Hit the open road to explore America’s natural wonders and wide-open spaces, along with the local shops and restaurants that form the fabric of the community.

Best Western® Hotels & Resorts and American Tours International (ATI) are partnering to promote the American road trip holiday to travel professionals across the United States. Building road trip packages that feature some of Best Western’s most popular properties in iconic locations, ATI empowers travel professionals to capitalize on the current road trip travel trend that will continue into this fall and through 2021. ATI’s Drive America platform has been developed to allow travel professionals to easily book one of 120+ road trip packages or to design their customers’ road trip from scratch. By utilizing ATI’s Drive America platform, travel professionals can access Best Western’s lowest available rates for their customers while receiving substantial commissions.

Read the rest of this entry »

Adventures at the End of the World

As the closest departure point to Antarctica, and the world’s southernmost city, this destination is known as The End of the World. Ushuaia sits at the edge of Argentina, its backdrop part of the monolithic Andes mountain range. A lesser known destination in Argentina, Ushuaia is removed from the life most people know – but keeps nature at its doorstep for the traveler to witness.

Ushuaia, meaning ‘deep bay’ in the indigenous Yaghan language, lies between the Beagle Bay and the Martial mountain range. It looks out from the tip of Tierra del Fuego Island, or Land of Fire, named so by the arriving Spanish settlers when they saw the fires of the indigenous people along the coasts. Read the rest of this entry »