In 2011, Nancy graduated from the University of Southern California with a bachelor’s degree in Communication. During her senior year, she interned at the number one Spanish television network, Univision. Before graduating, she was able to secure a spot with the station as a Production Assistant. With time, she was promoted to Production Coordinator and then Associate & Field Producer. As a producer, Nancy managed reporters and production crews on the field covering special events like the Rose Parade, The Oscars, local elections & telethons. She was also involved in the production of community events like education fairs, entrepreneurial summits and sport tournaments, where she excelled at planning and managing logistics.
Working under tight deadlines, Nancy learned to think on her feet, anticipate problems, and come up with solutions while maintaining a calm and focused demeanor. Nancy loved TV production, but after taking a month and a half long backpacking trip through Europe, she developed another love – travel. One of the most important outcomes she observed about traveling was not just the wonderful satisfaction she gained from being abroad, but the social progress tourism has on the community and overall economy.
Since 2014, she’s traveled to approximately 26 countries in 4 continents. She’s traveled solo, with her sister and Husband, on tours and as an independent traveler. Nancy pinpoints the long backpacking trip with her sister as the catalyst for returning to school and pursuing a master’s degree in Tourism, Hospitality and Recreation Management. She graduated in 2017 from California State University Northridge. Today, Nancy is the Business Development Manager for Super Value Tours. She loves the people she works with and is happy she found a company that pours their heart and soul into creating the best quality experiences for guests.
Travel Research Online (TRO): Hi, Nancy. How are you today?
Nancy Lemus (NL): Hi there! I’m excellent, thank you for asking.
TRO: You’ve been with Super Value Tours (SVT) since May. How are you liking it so far?
NL: I’m happy to say that I love working with Super Value Tours. I get to work alongside passionate people who just want to provide the best quality experiences for travelers. In the short amount of time I’ve been with the company, I’ve learned so much and have been given so many opportunities. Last month, I accompanied our CEO on a tour inspection to Ecuador, and later this month I’ll be doing training in Peru. It’s these experiences that I value profoundly, and that make me realize how lucky I am to have found a company that values their employees.
TRO: After almost 7 years of running logistics in television, you went on a backpacking trip that changed your life and inspired a career change. Was there a specific moment during that trip that had such a big impact on your course in life?
NL: Yes, there was. It was the moment I didn’t want to come back home. We had just arrived in Amsterdam when I turned to my sister and said, “I’m not ready to go home,” without hesitation she replied, “then don’t.” So, I extended my trip for another 2 weeks. I went off on my own and had a lot of time to reflect on my life and my future. In moments of solitude, I found out I wasn’t happy with my job and there was no passion behind my work. I had become complacent and it just wasn’t my calling. Travel, on the other hand, gave me bliss, the opportunity to see the world differently, and it opened me up to new experiences. It was this euphoric state that turned me into an advocate for travel. Travel is not always pretty, but when it is, its life changing. I decided I wanted to be in a position where I could influence people and convert them into world citizens. This trip helped me find my passion and now I’m here doing what I love to do every day.
TRO: After a long stint in managing complicated logistics with television, does this transfer over well to the working with the logistics of travel at Super Value Tours?
NL: Yes, but at a much steadier pace. In television, everything is so fast paced because you’re working in “LIVE” time, so logistics must consider timing and unforeseen issues. While I may not be dealing with travel logistics yet, I know that my management skills will come in handy.
TRO: Super Value Tours offers up all-inclusive luxury travel for travelers who want more than a “tourist” experience. Can you tell us more about how SVT follows this philosophy?
NL: What really sets us apart from other companies is that we design and operate the tours ourselves. That means we get to focus on providing the best quality experiences for our guests. We’re able to accomplish this by following four themes. Let’s begin with the “un-Google-able.” With so much information online, it’s easy to become overwhelmed or wind up with out of date information. We find planning the very best travel experiences requires insight you’ll only find off-line. Having our on-location overseas offices allows us to ensure the latest and greatest ‘un-Google-able’ travel experiences for our guests. The next theme: Food equals Life. We don’t just throw a menu together and call it a day, we hand select every meal for our tours with purpose. Food is an enormous part of every culture on earth, so we include a wide selection of meals that range from street-food favorites to Michelin starred restaurants. The third theme: No Tourist Traps. Time is precious, that’s why we include only the most worthwhile places on any of our tours and refuse to include any time-wasting tourist traps. Our final theme: Be a Traveler, Not a Tourist. We reject the notion that traveling with a group means feeling like a tourist – our hotels are always centrally-located so our guests can enjoy local areas. I should add that having expert guides and limiting our groups is how we make this happen.
TRO: You travel quite a bit. Can you let us in on your favorite destinations around the world?
NL: Wow that’s a tough one! Like all travelers out there, it’s hard to pick because every place has something special and unique to offer. However, I would say the following top my list: Poland, Myanmar, New Zealand, Vietnam and Hungary. For me, these destinations offer a “WOW” factor that I don’t always get from other destinations. It’s a combination of the people, culture, history, food or sites that make them stand out in my mind really.
TRO: Can you tell us about any plans for the future of Super Value Tours?
NL: Absolutely! We’re relaunching our China product and adding some fierce itineraries that will blow travelers away. From Mt. Everest, to Yellow Mountain, to a private charter on the Yangtze River Cruise, travelers will not be disappointed. It’s going to be an exciting year for us all and we’re really looking forward to it. We also have some great developments happening with our Taiwan and Japan products. Stay tuned to our website for the latest news.
TRO: Nancy, thank you so much for taking time out of your schedule to be with us today.
NL: The pleasure was all mine. Thank you for having me.
For more information about Super Value Tours, please visit www.supervaluetours.com.