Monthly Archives: September 2020

Clarity of Intention

 

“Clarity of intention propelled by enthusiasm is the most potent combination known to humankind. It is the basis of all accomplishment.” – Author Unknown

Wanting to grow your business is admirable. Wishing you had more profitable sales is a common objective. Hoping things work out for you in the long run should come as no surprise. Praying for the strength to do what is right is admirable.

Wanting, wishing, hoping, and praying won’t do it. The hard truth is that you must do something – if you want to see progress. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Editorial Musings

Walt Disney left an incredible legacy behind when he passed away in 1966. Disney defined what great customer service is in the hospitality industry and crafted a conglomerate that I the envy of most every business.

If I had been in the travel industry when he was alive, you can be sure I would have gone to the ends of the earth to hear him speak or to (gasp) meet the man behind the mouse. Maybe not…I would have been 5, but you get the idea!

Why? Just take a look at some of his “isms”, and (my comments) and tell me these cannot be guiding principles for your travel practice. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Publishers Corner

Ex Fida Bona

Ex Fida Bona is Latin for “good business norms.” Last week TRO produced a webinar entitled “Don’t Let a Crisis go to Waste”. The webinar had its origin in an article in TRO by Richard D’Ambrosio. Like many good articles, I think Richard’s was a starting point.  Listen to it with the slightly abbreviated podcast below, or watch it on our webinars page.  This first webinar did a good job of stating the problems.  Now, it is time to find some solutions.  As a result, TRO is launching a series of webinars, articles and online-courses in travel law, accounting and insurance. We want to be a major part of bringing us all out of this mess. This industry in our life, and TRO will be there  fighting along with you. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: The Rosen Report

 

Start with travel advisors who are desperate for cash flow. Add suppliers who need a healthy distribution channel to calm wary travelers. Muddy the waters with commission recalls of $50,000 or more. And suddenly, the industry is abuzz with talk about paying travel agencies their commissions earlier in the cycle.

This being 2020, it’s no surprise that just as some applaud the idea, others call it a huge mistake. But in the space between, suppliers and advisors are Zooming about ways to make their payment policies fit the new reality.

“We’ve never had a program that pays advance commissions to travel advisors until now,” says Stephanie Mirando at Collette, which last week guaranteed $100 to $200 in commission on every reservation booked in 2021 for travel starting after May 1. Like a fee for service, advisors can keep it even if the trip is canceled. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Deck Plans

We will be hosting a cruise aboard Windstar’s newly renovated Star Legend roundtrip from Miami at the end of 2021. Up to $150 per person savings if you join our group – and a $100 shipboard credit. Dates are December 9-19, 2021 with rates beginning at $3,059 per person. See details below.

Windstar Cruises’ 10-day Jungles & Jewels of the Central American Coast itinerary sails roundtrip from Miami and takes passengers through the Caribbean to the East coast of Mexico. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Agent Perspectives

 

In a normal year, with the summer holidays over and kids returning to school, college and university, some of the UK’s annual September festivals offer you the possibilities for some late summer, GB-bound business in 2021. The Virtual International Agatha Christie Festival was introduced this week and; with the huge interest in Hercule Poirot, Miss Marple, and other great detective novels, movies and TV series; you could use this to generate interest in a tour customised to meet your client’s favourite characters.

There’s a great Whisky Festival in Scotland, an international Three Day Event at Burghley and the world’s greatest Jane Austen Festival in Bath; and, for garden lovers, the RHS Wisley Flower Show takes place at the same time as the Leeds Castle Festival of Flowers. Read the rest of this entry »

You’re Okay!

 

You did not get this far by accident. Granted, today’s challenges are unprecedented but challenges, in and of themselves, are not new. We have come a long way over time, and we have always managed to overcome what seemed (at the time) to be insurmountable obstacles. Today is no different. We shall prevail.

I suppose today’s message can be summed up by reminding you: What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. Read the rest of this entry »

 

It’s been six months since March, when the Coronavirus came down hard and much of America went into lockdown. Doctors and epidemiologists have had millions of cases to observe and analyze, and a consensus has developed about how to stop the spread of the virus. Along with it, people have learned how to protect themselves, and strategies are emerging for how to travel safely in a world in which the Coronavirus is present.

Even during the days of the strictest protocols, people were allowed to avail themselves of “essential services,” such as going to the grocery store. Early on, it became clear that the most effective means for stopping the spread were wearing masks, physical distancing, washing hands, and disinfecting high-touch surfaces. Wearing masks is at the top of the list and the most important. Read the rest of this entry »

 

Author David McNally once went on record to say, “It seems there is no tougher challenge than to accept personal responsibility for not only what we are, but also what we can be.”

When I read this quote, I immediately remembered another line from the movie producer Woody Allen. The Woodster said he had accomplished many fine things in his life, but he managed to come up short on a number of occasions. What he did not accomplish was nobody’s fault but his own. Read the rest of this entry »

What’s Your Virtual Networking Plan?

 

Conventions have ceased. Sales meetings have suspended. Coffee shop confabs have dispersed.

We’re all in danger of losing our networking knack!

Commerce continues with or without us. Victory will go to the versatile virtual networkers.

What’s your plan? Read the rest of this entry »

What Now? What Next?

 

Regardless of how many years you have been in business and how experienced you may be, a periodic “whack-in-the-head” is sure to come your way. And it just may be exactly what you need. My most recent “whack” came last week, as I was asked to edit a client’s Special Lead Generating Report.

The piece was excellently written. Other than a few grammatical errors, my contributions were quite incidental. That was not the “whack” I am talking about. It came soon after the travel advisor shared his marketing strategy with me that I once again, “saw the light.” Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Point-to-Point

 

Until late 2020, it’s unlikely that U.S. passport holders may be permitted to travel on “real” cruise ships. The ships are banned from U.S. ports and U.S. passport holders are not permitted to sail from European, Australian, or the ports of most other nations. On the few ships that attempted to sail from European ports (without Americans onboard) over the summer, nearly all of the cruises terminated early when COVID-19 appeared among passengers or crew. This was despite everyone being tested within a few days of boarding the ship. Read the rest of this entry »

Multitasking: The Game of Fools

 

“Fools” may be too strong a word, but if it caught your attention – I might as well stick with it. There probably is a milder word but the subject of today’s article is “multitasking.”

In yesterday’s message, I quoted author Gary Keller with a reference to his book titled The One Thing. Today I want to share a second quote from the same author.

“With research overwhelmingly clear, it seems insane that – knowing how multitasking leads to mistakes, poor choices, and stress – we attempt it anyway.” – The One Thing Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Taking Control

 

In normal times, insurance is one of the quietest sectors of the travel industry. But during the COVID-19 pandemic, travel insurance has become one of the most dynamic products for a travel advisor to sell, and it’s worth an update here.

Some countries have begun offering comprehensive medical coverage to encourage more travelers to visit their destinations. Suppliers are insuring the cost of cancellations through totally flexible cancellation policies, as well as their own vacation protection coverage.

For example, the week of August 10, Portugal launched a travel insurance program for inbound international travelers that will cover medical, surgical, hospital and pharmaceutical expenses. Spain’s Canary Islands is doing the same. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Publishers Corner

Planning for Serendipity

“People don’t take trips, trips take people” ~  John Steinbeck

There’s a word for happy accidents, those series of unplanned events leading to good memories: serendipity.  I am convinced the best trips are those in which we allow serendipity to go along for the ride.  On a trip to World Travel Market several years ago, I did something I do with some regularity and never with regret. I had always wanted to go to Glastonbury.  It was on my “someday” list. On the spur of the moment I decided it was now someday.  I checked out of my hotel and left London without any plan other than having a destination: Glastonbury. Read the rest of this entry »

A Disciplined Life

 

“Success is about doing the right thing, not about doing everything right. The secret to success is to choose the right habit and bring just enough discipline to establish it.” – Gary Keller, The One Thing

For years, I have been asked to share my thoughts on Time Management. It is a popular theme, and one that would draw huge crowds to the seminar room. Unfortunately, I am not qualified to offer any salient points on this subject. Reason being is that “time” does not require management. YOU DO. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Editorial Musings

Getting lost in the woods can be scary. 2020 started out pretty decently for the travel industry—wave season was underway. Bookings were solid. Suppliers were flush. And then COVID! 2020 went to hell in a handbasket and 2021 (if we are honest) is not shaping up to be much better. Face it, we are deep in the woods. Welcome to 2020 and Pooh’s Hundred Acre Wood. Read the rest of this entry »

Watch Your Tone

 

Someone once told me to remember that elephants don’t bite. Mosquitoes do. This is a clever way at reminding us that it is the little things that can annoy us the most.

I was reminded of this when a former business acquaintance “reached out” and gave me an unexpected phone call. It had been a while since we last communicated, which was a result of two busy people trying to make ends meet. It was good to hear his voice again.

In a few short minutes, I detected uneasiness in his voice. I did not mention it at first as we were too busy catching up. Detecting a momentary break in the flow of the conversation, I couldn’t help myself. I asked him point blank what was bothering him, since his tone was a dead giveaway that something wasn’t right. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted In: Deck Plans

Wow! We were impressed and encouraged while listening to Michael DaCosta, CroisiEurope’s General Manager, North America. Mike spent an hour with us talking about CroisiEurope’s return to cruising. River cruisers and barges are back in business, with no incidents (knock on wood). Capacity is limited to 75 percent, and dining is done in two shifts, unlike the single seating on CroisiEurope’s ships during normal times. In this informative webinar, Mike outlined several itineraries currently operating and discussed protocols. If you want to feel good about the future of cruising, check out our replay of Wednesday’s webinar. Read the rest of this entry »