Monthly Archives: July 2019

Posted In: Agent Perspectives

If you’re a regular reader of these Agent’s Perspectives (and there are many of you out there) you’ll be aware of my longstanding commitment to helping you identify and profitably develop some of the untapped niche markets close to where you live. It’s why my website is divided into separate sections for GARDEN, FAITH, VISUAL AND PERFORMING ARTS, GIRLS GETAWAYS, etc.

Many of your anglophile clients will be interested in themes with a LITERARY/ON LOCATION slant, and with 15 conversation starting itinerary outlines on the Literary Tours page, you can take a look at some of the potential sources ON YOUR DOORSTEP. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Deck Plans

This week on Avid Travel With Britton Frost, I am coming at you live from the Danube joined by our cruise manager for this week, Maddy Caldaruse.

Maddy has been working with AmaWaterways since 2007. With the company starting up in 2002, it’s almost as if she’s been there since the beginning. Ralph has had the privilege, and yes – I use that word intentionally, of sailing with Maddy multiple times over the past few years. Though this was my first time meeting Maddy we bonded quickly and now, as our journey concludes, I feel like I am parting ways with a long lost friend. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Soundings

Rolling vineyards, centuries-old masterpieces, cobblestone lanes, world-class cities, and colorful coastal fishing villages just scratch the surface of what to see in Italy. There’s never a lack of things to do in this magnificent country, the real challenge is figuring out how to create your own tour of Italy and plan your time in “The Beautiful Country”. You can get to know the area in just a day while you’re at port, but it all depends on what you want to see and do. Here are our best tips on how to plan your next Italy shore excursions. Read the rest of this entry »

Contrary to popular belief, your biggest problem may not involve your failure to communicate.

A few years back the movie Cool Hand Luke starring Paul Newman identified a universal concern as it pertained to the business world. In a famous scene, the feisty prison warden directed his wrath toward Newman and said in a threatening tone. ”What we have here, is a failure to communicate.

This single scene may very well be responsible for the popular communication movement today. Read the rest of this entry »

We are taught from a very early age to avoid failure. I am one of the few who spotted the folly in this advice years ago and as a result, have been preaching the benefits of failing for over 30 years.

I am not suggesting that “failures” are the real winners. Far from it. I am saying that the fastest way for you to know what you don’t know is to fail. The writing on the wall then becomes clear, and you know exactly what you need to learn to move forward. Failure leads to success. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Point-to-Point

Take Back The Day, Take Back Your Business

This is the third of seven articles in a series titled Discover Your Group Niche. You will be able find the others in our Point-to-Point section.

Are you running your business, or are your customers running you? How often do you end the day mentally exhausted having done countless tasks; yet, you’re not really sure if anything truly big was accomplished?

Maybe you’ve even written a business plan with the best of intentions. It’s a year later, and you still haven’t had time to work it. Why? You’re too busy.

Busy doing what? Busy allowing the marketplace to pull you in multiple directions. Distracting you. Frustrating you. Squashing your best laid plans, passion, and profits.

Quit blaming the customer. It’s not their fault. It’s yours for enabling chaos. Read the rest of this entry »

Whose Idea Was That?

I have found over the years that the most powerful word in the English language is the word “love.” Tell somebody that you “love” them and you are sure to get their attention. Another powerful word that is certain to garner attention is the word “idea.”

Tell somebody you have an “idea” and I can virtually guarantee you that their response will not be, “That’s too bad. Pass the ketchup.”

Ideas by their very nature are alluring and most people who are capable of “fogging a mirror” want to hear your latest brainchild. I am not inferring that they will endorse your idea, or even think that it is plausible. They will want to hear it. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Supplier Profile

Sky Bird Travel & Tours

Sky Bird Travel & Tours has been an industry leader in airline consolidation for over 40 years. Starting in a small office building in downtown Detroit, Sky Bird rooted its mission in providing exceptional customer service to travel agents by connecting them with low net fares that weren’t available to the public. Today, Sky Bird has 11 offices throughout the United States along with offices in Canada, India and the Philippines in order to serve their clients on a broader scale. For the last four years, Sky Bird has taken home the Travvy Award for Best Airline Consolidator (silver in 2016 and 2019, gold in 2017 and 2018). Read the rest of this entry »

This is not bad news. This is good news.

What gives marketing a bad rap is the notion that it is somehow manipulative. Nothing could be further from the truth, if you approach marketing my way. And as far as I am concerned, my way is the right way.

I get up each morning knowing that there are only two types of people I will ever come in contact with. These two types consist of (1) people I can help, and (2) people I can’t help. I have no intention of talking anybody into anything. My job is simply to identify those people I am in position to help and who are receptive to my help. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: 1:1

Arthur Salus, CEO, Costa Rica Dream Adventures

PictureArthur Salus entered the travel business when he opened Duluth Travel Incorporated in 1993.

Duluth Travel is a service-disabled veteran owned business and one of the top three full-service travel agencies in Atlanta, Georgia. Duluth Travel provides government, corporate, leisure, and incentive travel.

Arthur Salus is known in the local and national media as the “The Travel Master” bringing his insight into today’s travel industry.

In 1999, and after many fishing trips to Costa Rica, Arthur fell in love with the country and created an U.S. Tour Operator that sells exclusively Costa Rica with offices in Duluth, GA and San Jose, Costa Rica.

Arthur knew that such a small beautiful country had the potential to make travelers feel safe and happy.

Based on that purpose, Arthur named the company Costa Rica Dream Adventures.

He included 24/7 in-country travel support for travelers to never feel alone in a foreign country. His team in Costa Rica handles the logistics and takes cares of travelers during their stay in the country.

The U.S. team works hand to hand with travel agents to plan the perfect vacation for their clients and make sure all details are well-taken care of before traveling. Read the rest of this entry »

I never thought I would be saying this!

Much has happened since we last spoke: My Scottish friends have come to America for the fifteenth year in a row, and have returned to their wet, yet beautiful, weather. My wife has had another birthday, yet still looks like a high school graduate. I have conducted speeches in five new cities and I have ridden a zip line high over a beach in the Caribbean.

And yet, just the other day I heard myself say, “Mike, you are beginning to bore me.” Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Editorial Musings

It cannot be said enough—you need to make sure you are insured! You would not drive a car without insurance. Hopefully you are able to afford health insurance. And you better make sure you have business insurance as well as a separate errors and omissions policy. Why? Well that can be told in two simple words… Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Publishers Corner

How you got here and how to get there

Taking a lead from Mike Marchev, I have lately been spending more time than usual reading business books. Books by business leaders are not historically my first choice of reading material, but recently I have found my prejudice to be misplaced.

I am just now finishing What Got You Here Won’t Get You There – How Successful People Become Even More Successful by Marshal Goldsmith.  The author drew my attention as a “business coach” who reportedly charges CEO’s and upper managers $250,000 for his efforts on their behalf.

Goldsmith indicates the very skills which make someone a great entrepreneur, a brilliant engineer, or a very successful (fill in the blank) may also be the very characteristics holding them back from further success. The drive, the obstinance, the self confidence  propelling a person to one level in their career might be an impediment to their next leap forward. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Deck Plans

AmaWaterways’ Danube River Itineraries

AmaWaterways offers six Danube itineraries ranging from seven to 14-nights. While most of these itineraries are similar, or may have repeat ports, every itinerary has something that makes it unique.

Part of the appeal of the cruising Danube is the sheer amount of countries that you, as a guest, are able to visit. On cruises from Budapest to Nuremberg or Vilshofen, and reverse, guests are able to visit four countries. This may be the section of the Danube you have heard about, where you cruise through Germany, Austria, Slovakia, and Hungary. Read the rest of this entry »

Customer Service Wisdom #5:

Realize with your entire intelligent being that you can’t be all things to all people.

Just like one size can’t fit all, one service provider can’t be the best solution for the masses. And still, the majority of people in the travel industry often try to be this “super person.” Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Spotlight

Santa Cruz Island with Marnella Tours

In the center of the Galapagos Islands is the place where Darwin set up shop to formulate the theory of evolution. Santa Cruz Island, the second largest island in the archipelago with Puerto Ayora as its capital. It is a paradise, its beaches teeming with wildlife. That’s why Marnella Tours sponsored today’s article.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Luxury Travel Tips

What Business Are You In?

Depends on who you ask. Think about where you spend most of your time and money. My bet is that you spend a significant amount of effort figuring out how and where to market – not to mention how much it will cost.

In fact, most industry experts, coaches, and executives will be the first to say that you are in the marketing business. Why else would virtually all of the industry learning and promotional programs be based on building out marketing plans and advertising budgets?

I’ll tell you why: Marketing is sexy. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Departures

Exploring Cape Town

Known by the locals as the Mother City, Cape Town is the oldest city in South Africa. Its charms span from the natural wonders that surround it to a population diversity that is the most multicultural in the world. Mountains, wine, beaches, and magnificent sunsets are plenty. South African Airways is ready to fly the traveler to Cape Town. Read the rest of this entry »

Customer Service Wisdom #4:

“Talk is cheap” is an age-old saying that is as true today as ever.

From politicians on down, people in general say what they think their audiences will believe or simply want to hear.

Sales people in general are pretty good at this. Say it. Sell it. Forget it. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Point-to-Point

Take Off Your Training Wheels

This is the second of seven articles in a series titled Discover Your Group Niche. You will be able find the others in our Point-to-Point section.

As a kid I loved pedaling around in my Big Wheel. This three-wheeled tricycle had low proximity to the ground and kept me safe (even when we’d play bang-up derby).

I can’t recall when Dad graduated me to the two-wheel bike but I do remember teaching my kids. I am not sure who was more terrified! Running alongside and then letting them go was a true test of faith.

After a bit of trepidation from the kids, they eventually wobbled their way to stability — and never looked back. You and I no longer ride Big Wheels or bikes with training wheels. We get up and go because we are confident we can. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Supplier Profile

Cosmopoliton Travel Service (CTS Fares) has been consolidating the details of getaways for over 50 years. They work closely with airlines, and hotels to help the travel consultant and their clients save money. Their goal is to do good business, and help agents do good business in return; meaning that, not only do they provide some of the best discounts in the travel industry, the complete process of booking through CTS is transparent: mark-ups, net rates, and commission levels are all visible…even through the booking engine.

CTS Fares is always on the case when there are issues, questions, or scheduling changes. Read the rest of this entry »