Monthly Archives: September 2018

Posted In: Publishers Corner

Getting Ready for 2019

Is it hard to believe we are only slightly more than three short months from 2019? It certainly is for me. During the next three months, you can do yourself no greater favor than to begin working through a marketing plan, a budget and a calendar for 2019. Getting into the travel planning business is very easy.  Staying in the travel planning business is a bit more of a challenge. True we can sometimes simply luck our way through, but in so doing we inevitably waste resources and miss opportunities. Working with a plan is absolutely essential to achieving the best possible results. Sporadic marketing, chasing one opportunity and then another, seldom resolves in a productive manner. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Preview

Kausha Ghia, Manager, Cook Travel

Kausha Ghia has a BA in Economics from Mumbai University, and took her IATA travel and tourism course in 1984. She worked at a travel agency in India from 1985 until 1997; she then moved to New York City and spent a year working for an agency selling airfare to diamond buyers. She started at Cook Travel in 1998 and became manager in 2002. In addition to her degree in Economics, she has LMSW from Fordham University, and practices psychotherapy, which she thinks is a useful skill in dealing with travel agents! She is currently involved in a mentorship that benefits students in India. She is married and lives in Totowa, NJ. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: cartoons

King Cartoon – September 21, 2018

Posted In: Deck Plans

Recently, I spent an hour gleaning cruise industry insights from Frank del Rio, president and CEO of Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd., the parent of Norwegian Cruise Line, Oceania Cruises and Regent Seven Seas Cruises.

From the perspective of del Rio’s prism, the cruise industry is experiencing some of its best years ever, and for cruise companies like his, bookings are robust, with consumer demand high. Read the rest of this entry »

There is an old saying that reminds us “common sense is not that common.” I happen to agree with this statement. It continues to bewilder me when I see companies (and employees) treat customers like they are “automatic” and act like their customers have no other options when it comes to spending money on goods and services. I can think of no better word for this practice than DUMB. (Maybe STUPID also does the trick.)

Here are six quick reminders to put you and your team back on track. If it comes across as common sense than perhaps it is just common sense. Read the rest of this entry »

Why People Can Be Difficult

I’m not sure what is happening, but it seems to me that more people are becoming unhappier by the day. TVs, cell phones, two cars, and more food than they need isn’t enough to put a permanent smile on most faces. But let’s dig deeper. If you realize why these people are coming across in such a negative demeanor you will be in a better position communicate with a productive output. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: TRO SMITH

Recycle. Upcycle. Repurpose. Whether you hang out in the world of DIY or social marketing you’ll recognize these terms as trendy time savers.

In the world of DIY, we think of upcycling as taking an old table and turning it into a trendy kitchen island.

In the world of sewing, recycling and repurposing just became part of my world. Recently I received my grandmothers wedding dress as a gift. This family heirloom has now become a couple of new pieces in my closet. I’ve been able to transform parts of the dress into 4 different garments; the front panel on a blouse, a skirt, appliques on a blouse for my mom and trim on a bathrobe. Yep, a lot of time in my sewing room, and 4 trendy pieces that remind me of my grandma. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Luxury Travel Tips

Cash (Flow) is King!

I tend to be a little old school. I don’t believe every new app dreamed up by some kid in his basement, who has never sold anything in his life, is going to revolutionize how we sell in this or any other business. Because travel is such a huge industry world-wide, it attracts all sorts of people trying to capitalize on the “get rich quick with little or no effort” movement so prevalent online. As a professional travel business advisor, I will just say to you, “buyer beware”.

So, you can imagine how annoyed I get when people ask me about my latest “hack” or how to “disrupt” the market. Don’t even get me started on “unicorns.” Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Point-to-Point

Mullis Mulls the Future of Guyana Tourism

You probably haven’t heard a lot about Guyana as a tourist destination. But that’s about to change.

Bolstered by a relatively modest budget and an infusion of new talent, which not only includes a new Director, but a new Board, new support staff, and new market reps honcho — the Guyana Tourism Authority (GTA) is hoping to compete with the heavyweights of South American tourism.

Leading the charge is Brian Mullis, who was appointed director of the tourism authority last April with a mandate to restructure the agency, pull its tourism marketing and products into the 21st century, and ultimately put Guyana in the sights of eco and adventure tourists around the globe. Read the rest of this entry »

Facts & Rules: Part 2

Here are five more reminders:

68% – I want you to remember that customers will come and customers will go. They will enter your life and depart at different times. You can think of this as the “customer cycle of contribution.” The fact is that when customers choose to part company with you, they do so, more often than not, for a reason. And the reason, more often than not, is not the reason you think. 68% of the customers you lose will not be leaving because of something you did. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Supplier Profile

KATARINA line, the largest DMC based in Kvarner region and one of the leading Croatian tour operators is also the premier small ship cruise company with weekly guaranteed departures from the end of April to mid-October from the major tourist centers of Opatija in Kvarner area, and Split and Dubrovnik in Dalmatia. With a fleet of more than 60 ships, the cruise line caters to all ages and budgets with itineraries that give travelers the opportunity to explore the stunning natural environment and historical, quaint Mediterranean towns while hopping from one island to another. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Preview

The Cotswolds, England with Globus

The Cotswolds is England’s largest Area Of Natural Beauty, an official designation of protected landscape. The picturesque Cotswold towns and villages, the many bridges, stone cottages and broad meadows are the very essence of tranquil English countryside. Indeed, the Cotswolds are the rural and village “England” of everyone’s imagination. Many thanks to Globus for making this introduction to the Cotswolds available.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Outposts

Located within the Iguazú National Park, Iguazu Falls offers several trails and railways with phenomenal views of its 275 individual waterfalls. The diverse wildlife and beauty of the park moved the UNESCO to declare it a World Heritage Site in 1984. The largest waterfall system in the world, Iguazu Falls is consistently recognized as one of the most outstanding of nature’s wonders. Though the Iguazu river flows mainly through Brazil, over 80% of the falls are located in Argentine Province of Misiones. With a name consisting of the Guarani or Tupi words for “big” and “water” Iguazu Falls is a destination experienced travelers place near the top of their lists of “must see” adventures.  Read the rest of this entry »

Here is another two-part message. Those of you who know me will easily recognize these four rules:

80/20 Rule – This rule is uncanny in its effectiveness. It implies that 80% of your profit originates from 20% of your client base. What does this, as far as Customer Service is concerned? You must identify which clients are contributing most to your eating habits and treat them accordingly. No, you do not have to treat everybody equally. You do have to treat everybody honestly. Identify your top 20% today and thank them for stopping by. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Agent Perspectives

I have enjoyed the articles that I have been reading on your website, very informative. I’ve been doing a lot of research on being a travel agent and if it is the right career change for me. There is a lot to learn! One of the questions I have would be: Would it be more beneficial to try and get a job at AAA as a Travel Agent first and learn the ropes or to sign up with a Host Agency? There is a AAA position open in my area and the more I was reading it, it sounded like a lot of sales (possibly more geared towards selling memberships). I’ve had 1 experience doing sales back in the 90s selling Tupperware and I wasn’t good at all. So sales in general aren’t my thing. So would that hinder me as a Travel Agent? I’m not a high pressure, cold calling, sales kinda person. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: 60-Second Geography

Lille with Back-Roads Touring

An often overlooked destination in France, Lille is a charming European city on the northern tip of France. It is mostly accessible by walking its streets, which are lined with French architecture. There is a slower pace compared to Paris, perfect for relaxing outside a café and taking in the air of a great getaway. Thanks to Back-Roads Touring, today we’ll go over the main points of why the traveler will revel in the atmosphere of Lille.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: 1:1

Jaclyn Leibl-Cote, President, Collette

Jaclyn manages Collette’s day-to-day operations, working with our global offices, teams on the road and all over the company. She collaborates with the strategic leadership and executive teams to drive Collette’s growth. She directly oversees product development and tour management operations; and works closely with the sales and marketing teams. Jaclyn started with Collette in 2005 and has held numerous positions within the company. Jaclyn spent many years designing product and managing tours in regions including in the United States and Australia. She has also guided tours and worked in the customer care center as an inside sales representative. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Rhode Island and an MBA from Babson College. Read the rest of this entry »

Choice of Style

Like everything else under the sun today, you have choices to consider. The style of organization you want to represent is one of them. What kind of reputation do you want to bring to the playing field? There are four to choose from.

Each of the four types consists of two primary elements, the procedure side of business and the personal side. One deals with the way you connect with your prospects and customers, while the other involves the actual mechanics of delivering your product or service in a professionally accepted fashion. Both are of equal importance and the combination of the two define the type of organization you are running. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Editorial Musings

Most of us are solo (or close to it) agencies. We work from home or a small office and sales, marketing, planning, accounting, education, customer service, and janitorial all tend to fall under our umbrella title of “travel professional.” And, if we are honest with ourselves, some of these slip through the cracks. Sometimes all it takes is a little note to remind ourselves that from time to time we need to rejuvenate our business. And here are some easily implemented marketing reminders. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Publishers Corner

Accentuating the positive

Several years back, Psychology Today ran an article on what it termed the human “negativity bias.” It seems that our brains have a heightened sensitivity to unpleasant news. We focus on the negative. Very likely that capacity kept our knuckle-dragging ancestors out of harm’s way. Today, however, it serves to allow politicians to manipulate us with negative political advertising and gives the news media a portal through which they can drive advertising. The impact can be seriously harmful to our sense of well-being.

Unfortunately, this bad-news bias is active not only when we sit in front of the television, but in every aspect of our lives. We remember insults far longer than we remember compliments. Fear can paralyze us into acting unwisely or not at all. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Agent Perspectives

Flower Power and an Edible Garden

Two weeks ago, I put together a summary of early spring UK garden festivals and to complete this unique and very useful calendar, I’m focusing on the major Royal Horticultural Shows (RHS) between May and September along with some other bright ideas for your green fingered clients. Read the rest of this entry »