As a travel professional, the logistics involved in travel can seem so apparent as to merit little consideration. Get on a plane, fly to Paris, check into a hotel and begin to sightsee. Right? To the first time traveler to a destination, however, the process of travel can seem confusing and intimidating. A big part of the after the sale service a smart travel consultant can offer is to explain to the client the travel logistics they are about to experience.
Matters as simple as whether bags are checked through all the way through to the destination or clearing customs can be stressful issues for new or infrequent travelers. Add on passports, visas, customs, currency, international credit card use, language difficulties, etiquette, hotel differences…. you get the picture. Travelers from the United States in particular tend to be timid travelers. Your professional guidance can do much to ensure your clients’ trips are productive and enjoyable.
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Spend some time with each client discussing their upcoming travels. Probe to determine where concerns may be hiding. Understand the client may be hesitant to reveal their lack of knowledge, so be tactful. Provide the client with destination guides, videos and other reading material as you find it.
When you help the client anticipate problems, the shock value of travel inconveniences can be lessened. After 12 hours of overnight travel, the client may arrive at 8 a.m. and the hotel room may not be available until 3:00 p.m. If the client knows in advance this will happen, if you provide them with a map of close-by shopping, dining and sightseeing while they wait, you will have a happier client.
Everybody needs happier clients! Don’t assume your client knows the ropes. In each instance cover the logistics of travel in general and of the upcoming travel in particular.