TravelResearchOnline | The voice of the travel agency community


Don’t you love it when someone recognizes your logo?  Their eyes light up, they look up from your business card and say “I know you!”  It’s a great feeling because it means a very important aspect of your marketing is working. Recognition of your company’s “visual system” is an important first step to shortening the entire purchasing cycle.

Your company’s visual system encompasses many separate components: Logo, font, color palette, images, and even white space. Each of these elements must work together harmoniously to instantly identify you to the world.  Read the rest of this entry »

This week on Avid Travel With Britton Frost, Mike Louagie joins us to give some tips on photography – specifically while cruising.

One of the most frustrating parts of a trip can be trying to photograph every moment in order to share it with family and friends back home. Especially when you look back to your photos and they’re blurry, something is in the way, or simply put – they’re bad. The introduction of smart phones and digital cameras countered some of these problems, as we are now able to see our photos in real time, but sometimes photos seem to be lackluster. Read the rest of this entry »

I am proud to say I have been a part of the National Transaction Corp (NTC) family for over 10 years, and am now the VP of Operations. However, when I left the Army as a Satellite/Microwave Communication Specialist, I never would have imagined it would lead me to where I am today. When you think about it though, credit card terminals need to communicate, and most of the time, the problems merchants experience with the terminals, are communication issues.

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How to Use Video in the Sales Process

Do you want to close sales more quickly?

Do you want to grow relationships with your potential clients more quickly?

I’ll bet your answer is a resounding YES! Learning how and when to add video into your sales process is a super easy way to shift your sales into high gear. Tune in and finesse your next sales conversation with the tips in this video.

Join the 94% of businesses who see video as an effective sales tool. Read the rest of this entry »

The second-worst sales experience EVER

I think we can all agree that the worst sales experience ever is the ever-increasing, randomly-spoofed, cold call on your home or cell phone trying to sell you a car warranty…a lower interest rate…gutters…or (as has been my case of late) prepaid funerals. Maybe they know something that I don’t; but I can tell you — I ain’t buying.

But last week’s column got me thinking about bad sales experiences. Excluding the above, let me tell you about my worst one—take notes on how to avoid it. Read the rest of this entry »

What’s Your Story?

The business world is not immune to fads, but there are a few that have stood the test of time. The principles in How to Win Friends and Influence People and Think and Grow Rich have been guiding business people to success since the 1930s.

One recent “fad” is storytelling. The number of people who list “storyteller” as their occupation (I didn’t realize it existed outside the kids’ section in Barnes and Noble) on LinkedIn is incredible. Yet, everyone from StoryBrands Donald Miller, a former screenwriter, to the travel industry’s own Richard D ’Ambrosio are singing the virtues of applying the practice to your own business narrative. Read the rest of this entry »

Essential Adventures in Sydney, Australia

Surrounded by a sparkling harbor and beaches, Sydney wows year-round visitors with its world-class attractions and access to unique and natural beauty. Fortunately, travelers looking for Sydney shore excursions have plenty to choose from. Attractions like the Royal Botanical Gardens and the Opera House are nearby, while Sydney day trips to the Hunter Valley unveils some of the world’s most popular wines. The best things to do in Sydney are an easy shore excursion away. Read the rest of this entry »

A QuickStart Guide for Traveling to Alaska

Finding that fantastical destination that’s ideal for a cruise, wildlife viewing, fishing, and outdoor fun sounds like a tall order, but is well within reach. An Alaskan vacation fits the bill for wilderness lovers and anyone who appreciates stunning scenery and plenty of fresh air. Alaska also makes for the perfect multigenerational trip, family vacation, adventurous singles or couples with something everyone will love.

But it takes a little planning to create the perfect vacation for Alaska travelers. Here’s how to get started: Read the rest of this entry »

A Look at ShoreTrips

ShoreTrips offers more than 2400 excursions and activities, all personally tested, in more than 500 destinations around the world. They travel the globe to find the best shore excursions, day activities and city sightseeing tours. Their high standards let them create outstanding trips, and along with their helpful tools and their expert staff, they continually garner support from clients and partners. Read the rest of this entry »

The recent announcements about the new ePassport gates at UK airports (see my top story) started me thinking about other ways in which you can help your clients enjoy a smoother and better start to their UK visit.

Having gained time by a quicker journey through immigration at London Heathrow, don’t squander it by joining the Monday-Friday rush hour traffic jams heading into London—only to find that their hotel rooms won’t be ready until the early afternoon. Get the trip off to a more enjoyable start by heading northwest for about an hour and use one of these suggestions as the starting point for a customised UK tour. Read the rest of this entry »

I’m doing something a little unusual for this TRO installment! In order to maintain privacy, I’m answering a question without providing the specific exchange. Over the past two weeks, several travel advisors reached out to me to let me know that their host are not paying their commissions (sometimes to the tune of tens of thousands of dollars). Read the rest of this entry »

Lessons From a Fabric Store

You are probably wondering if Marchev has gone off the deep end? No, I haven’t. Not yet. I want to share an observation I had while my wife Barbara and I were strolling through a fabric store looking for ideas.

After being in the store for just four-minutes I felt a migraine coming on, and I don’t get migraines! I was being introduced to the 3 C’s: The choices, the colors and the costs. I must admit, there was a lot of good-looking stuff in that store. Read the rest of this entry »


The coasts of the Aegean Sea are widely known for their sun-soaked and relaxing atmosphere, but in the South Aegean lies one of the most popular: Santorini. Many images the traveler sees when they look up a trip to the Greek islands are of the bleached homes terraced atop rocky cliffs, turquoise blue water, and sunsets that make hearts melt into a romantic goo. From chic hotels to spectacular views, Santorini has a cure for travelers looking for an amazing getaway. Today’s 60-Second Geography is brought to you by Celestyal Cruises.

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Having spent the majority of my professional career in the travel industry working with both Cruise Lines and Tour Operators, I joined the Celestyal Cruises North American team in February 2019 with a divine passion for cultural exploration, destination immersion and a devotion in expanding our products and services to our strategic partners in North America.

My role involves traveling Western North America to assist our strategic partners in helping grow their Celestyal Cruises business. Much of this time is devoted to client and agency visits, often for training, luncheons or virtual webinars conducted in house to home agents who don’t live in the ‘neighborhood’. In addition, I also conduct many webinars to assist with education for new clients/agencies on our newest product updates, additions, and company advancements.

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Naples with ShoreTrips

Italy, as always, is a top-tier vacation for most travelers. But while most travelers have a tendency to choose Rome and Florence, they are missing out on one of the most authentic cities in Italy—Naples. Located on the southwest of the peninsula, Naples is a coastal city with a connection to other famous sites nearby; the well-preserved cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum which lie in the shadow of Mt. Vesuvius, and the picturesque Amalfi Coast. With a distinct culture and sites that showcase a different side of Italy, Naples is a choice destination for the traveler. Today’s 60-Second Geography is brought to you by ShoreTrips.

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The Garden Route of South Africa

Along the southwestern coast of South Africa is an area that offers up diverse ways of experiencing Africa. The Western Cape is an astonishing destination with plenty of wilderness and wildlife, vineyards, and a deep history of native peoples. Its capital, Cape Town, is a great starting point for all the explorations the traveler will experience. But the real star of the show here is The Garden Route, a stretch of coastal highway along the southernmost tip of Africa with almost 200 miles of natural sites and fantastic stopovers for the traveler. Today’s article is brought to you by Central Holidays.

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Bali: Simply Paradise

In southeastern Asia, there is an island considered to be a true paradise by many. A place that wins so many awards in the travel industry, this article would run a bit too long to list them. The coasts are an immaculate example of where white sand meets tropical water. Where tiered temples accent lush jungles, stand in the reflections of tranquil waters. This island is Bali, a place that is wholly its own unique culture but welcomes the traveler with open arms and utopian sunsets. Read the rest of this entry »