Travel Quest — Feed me dammit! | Travel Research Online


Travel Quest — Feed me dammit!

I’ve made my decision—I have to lay this out in the open.  For months I’ve started writing my column on the subject but changed my mind.  No one in the mainstream media is writing about it so surely it’s just me.  I’ve tried repressing it, I’ve tried downplaying the severity of the situation, I’ve tried hoping things will change.  But it’s as if I’m stuck in a recurring nightmare.

What am I taking issue with?  The lack of treats for our office when a rep stops in.  Yes folks, I know you feel my pain.  This is serious.  I realize budgets are tight and the territories of reps are expanding but that does not change the fact that I love sweets.  Compound that with the fact that I habitually forget to bring lunch and am always hungry at the office and this becomes a real issue for me.

Don’t get me wrong, I am very glad when reps stop in to update us on the products as knowledge makes us all better at our jobs.  Realistically speaking, a simple visit should suffice but let’s look at two situations and tell me which one you prefer:  1) Someone stops in and gives an update.  2) Someone stops in to give an update and brings in [insert delicacy of your choice].

We have a rep that occasionally brings amazing caramel apples and, just like Pavlov’s dogs, I wait in eager anticipation of her arrival.  I’ll openly admit that at work, I’m a food-motivated person.  I could ease the severity of the situation by waking up earlier and packing a lunch, but having me do anything in the morning before 9 AM is just asking for a disaster.  That aside, I’m a grounded person, it’s not as if I expect goodies every visit.  But when I can count the number of reps that have brought something in to our office the past year on one hand (ahem, one rep), that’s a bad sign.

So, on behalf of agents, I ask that vendors reconsider the silent moratorium on reps bringing offices much needed nourishment.  That occasional $5 investment on treats when they drop in will not only foster goodwill but, if timed correctly, will give the office a sugar high so they are alert and energetic during the visit and crash only after they’ve relayed the important information.  My intentions aren’t purely selfish; there are some advantages for the suppliers!

For any reps reading this, I adore fresh, delicious, soft cookies of almost any variety.  If you’re stumped on what to bring an office, let’s hear from some agents on their favorite delights!

Stephanie Lee works in Operations at Travel Quest, a host agency out of MN with over 200+ home-based travel agents.  She graduated from the College of St. Benedict/St. John’s University with a degree in Environmental Studies/Liberal Studies.  She was awarded ASTA Young Professional of the Year in 2008 and was named one of Travel Agent’s “30 under 30” in 2009.  She can be reached at, via Google+, or 800.392.6484.  For more information on Travel Quest visit or

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  7 thoughts on “Travel Quest — Feed me dammit!

  1. Diana says:

    Yeah, where did all the donuts go?

  2. Steph Lee says:

    A dozen donuts can bring so much happiness… but they have to bring them first!

  3. Ann, CTC says:

    Well, think about all your poor hungry ICs… sitting in their respective home offices, nary a rep to be seen… I insist that the next time you get a dozen donuts, you chop them up and share!!!

  4. Steph Lee says:

    Ann, I will definitely do that! But I wouldn’t count on it anytime soon… 🙂

  5. Jamie Bachrach says:

    Since I started working out of my home over 5 years ago, I have not had the pleasure of goodies being brought in by reps, so I try to attend a few trade shows here and there to make up for it, haha.

  6. Steph Lee says:

    Jamie, let me know when those tradeshows are so we can get our goodie fix together! 🙂 Or, one of our agents has graciously offered to bake cookies if I go and visit her so that’s another option!

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