Posted In: Agent Perspectives
If you have clients who are looking for a customised UK tour or you’re thinking of making a pitch to a group of Master Gardeners, your local garden club, rose or herb society, this week’s collection of privately owned gardens will knock their socks off!
To set your ideas apart from the rest, use as a starting point my 4 word mantra of TRAVEL LESS, SEE MORE and to make these and other horticultural masterpieces work, here are some other tips for you to consider.
Posted In: Departures
The United States is home to 59 National Parks, spanning all over the country. It can be hard to decide which to visit next but after learning about the wonderful things Glacier National Park has to offer, the choice will be an easy one. Thanks to Vacations By Rail, the supplier sponsor of this article, you won’t miss any of the beauty or history of Glacier National Park.
Little things make or break deals.
In a “me-too” world, it is the fundamentals and strict adherence to details that will position you faster and more accurately than just about anything else.
Today’s clients are in the driver’s seat. They know it and have numerous options when buying goods or services. Your success will have everything to do with how you manage the relationship, and this involves “the details.”
Posted In: Luxury Travel Tips
(This is the second in a six-part series about how you can transform your travel agency into a money- making machine)
You will hear from just about everyone of any authority in the retail travel channel that you need to be marketing. The reason for your success or failure boils down to one thing – the effectiveness of your marketing.
Posted In: Supplier Profile
When it comes to selecting a travel service company there are many factors to take into account. Making such an important decision can be challenging, but after browsing the options that THOR Inc. has to offer you won’t need to look any further.
My Internet provider once bought a competitor, and the switch made my life miserable. There were plenty of problems with the connection from, let’s call them “XYZ,” and my techno-life became problematic.
Newspapers jumped on this bad news, and when I read the words “XYZ” in the headline, my attention was drawn to the article. It said, in effect, “Hey bub, if you are the recipient from this bogus treatment, I’m talking to you.”
Posted In: Outposts
Located on the Pacific Coast of Costa Rica is the Nicoya Peninsula. Known for its magnificent beaches, it is the perfect place for a rugged adventure or a lazy day lounging in the sun. The Nicoya Peninsula has quickly become a popular destination for travelers all over the globe, and thanks to Costa Rica Dream Adventure, the supplier sponsor of this article, you’ll have the opportunity to see all of what these beautiful beaches have to offer.
Posted In: 60-Second Geography
If you have been pondering where to visit next, look no further than Guilin. With exquisite scenery and ancient history found throughout this Chinese city, you’ll never want to leave. Thanks to Stunning China, the supplier sponsor of this article, you won’t have to sacrifice anything to see Guilin.
Posted In: 1:1
With 11 years in the travel industry, Jim Tedesco has proven to be an effective and well respected leader. Before his position as Vice President of Sales for International Markets (North America/UK and Europe), Jim spent many successful years specializing in the wholesale side of the industry. In his VP of Sales for International Markets position Jim is responsible for an array of items, including the overall strategic direction of the Back-Roads brand in the International Markets. To learn more about Jim Tedesco and Back-Roads Touring Co., continue reading on.
Which one of these two stories defines your organization?
#1. Heads, you win…tails, I lose.
I once called a store and asked about a replacement glass cover for a kitchen light fixture. Since they did not have a computer, I was told that I would have to take a picture of the part and come into the store.
Posted In: Editorial Musings
Earlier this week I received an email pitching a service to help agencies detect fraud. It piqued my interest initially and to be honest, it did not seem to have a whole lot of meat to it. So much of it was not applicable to agencies, but more to tour operators, OTAs, and airlines. And then there was this statement that make begin to think. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted In: Agent Perspectives
I’ve been customising UK tours for over 38 years, and cannot recall an occasion when I’ve not included at least one or two stately homes and their gardens in the bespoke itinerary. You won’t be in the least bit surprised when you take a closer look at the world-class examples I’ve showcased. For me, the excitement comes from the challenge of putting your wish list into an imaginative, sensibly priced itinerary which your clients will thoroughly enjoy.
Take a look, catch the vision of what’s on offer and then let’s talk.
Posted In: Soundings
Some time ago I heard this in a cruise line training class about cruise-tours, and it has stuck with me ever since: “If you are not selling cruise-tours, you are leaving money on the table.” They weren’t exaggerating. As an example, let’s consider an agency that gets 10% commission with Princess Cruises. Take a 7 night Alaskan cruise with cruise line vacation protection, and add a 4 night pre-cruise tour.
The cruise-only commission works out to about $498. The cruise-tour commission works out to about $769. That is a difference of $271 you would be leaving on the table if you focus on booking cruises only. Obviously, the higher commission percentage that an agency gets, the more significant the difference is between cruise-only bookings and cruise-tour bookings.
I know one thing for sure, you don’t want to look back one day while uttering the useless phrase “If only I….”
The next worse phrase I know is “I should have …”
What you “should have done,” “could have done,” or “might have done” to arrive on today’s calendar page is a waste of time. Opportunities viewed through the rear view mirror are nothing more than empty wishes…“yesterday’s news.”
Yesterday is a memory. Tomorrow is a dream. Today is your reality. The only question worth asking is what can you to do today to make a difference? What can you do right now to help your cause?
Do you feel comfortable when asking your customers “How was your experience with us?” You should be, but I am betting that you aren’t. The reason for that is you are afraid you might hear something you don’t want to hear. Yet the truth of the matter is that you are in total control of response. It is entirely up to you to make your clients, customers and guests feel very special and therefore share a very favorable answer to your question.
Posted In: Travel Agent Diaries
I’ve been deep into the Disney Destinations niche for close to two decades, and have been honored to be a part of planning many special trips for clients. There’s one, though, that always stands out for me.
I’d been booking an annual Walt Disney World trip for an adult brother and sister and their families for years. The wives did a great job of keeping me up to date between trips on what the families were up to, and I came to consider them friends as much as clients. I even drove to Orlando to meet up with them in person one year!