Travel advisors are more important than ever for clients booking travel. As we emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic, it is more essential than ever to stay on top of changing protocols and entry requirements.
Now is your opportunity to be a trusted travel advisor to your clients. Your job is to ensure they are equipped with the necessary information before they embark on their next adventure.
At the recent CoNexion conference, John Rose, Chief Risk & Security Officer of ALTOUR, shared some tips with attendees on how they can keep clients informed and mitigate some of the risks associated with travel today.
We’ll walk you through four easy steps to keep your clients informed, aware, and prepared for their next travel adventure.
- Keeping Customers Informed
Things are ever-changing in the travel world. It is vital to keep your clients informed on the latest COVID-19 protocols for travelers. Schedule a reminder to check 14-days, 7-days, and 48-hours prior for any last-minute restriction changes. Supplier and tourist boards can keep your client up to date on the latest requirements for entry.
One of the best ways to keep yourself and your clients up to date is by using Sherpa, IATA, and CIBT Visas resources.
Sherpa is an easy-to-use website that allows you to share the correct travel documentation with your clients and understand up-to-date travel requirements. Sherpa is updated by independent resources and gives travel advisors health and safety information in one place. This tool breaks down what documentation, forms, proof of travel insurance to every destination. You’re going to save time, and your clients will appreciate the comprehensive list they receive from you.
Suppliers may need to contact your client in case of any last-minute changes. Double-check their contact and passport information to ensure everything is current for a smooth departure.
- Ensuring your Clients are Covered
It is more important now than ever to ensure that your clients have adequate travel insurance coverage whenever they travel.
As you change dates or make changes, ensure your client’s travel insurance policy completely covers the trip and anything they might have booked on their own (i.e., boat excursions, hiking expeditions, a day trip to a different city, etc.).
Frequent travelers may want to look into non-insured annual plans or annual membership evacuation plans. Suppliers like MedJet can provide more information.
- Ensuring your Clients are Prepared
It is essential to be prepared. Here are a few tips to ensure your clients have safe travels.
- Print out paper copies of the appropriate documentation for each destination.
- Pack approved masks by suppliers- N95, KN95, medical-grade masks, etc.
- Include your vaccination records in your carry-on baggage and it is vital to have digital vaccination proof on your smartphone.
As a travel advisor, it is your responsibility to ask your client about their vaccination status to ensure they travel safely and legally. Vaccine eligibility is quickly changing in many countries; some destinations have maximum terms on vaccine eligibility, and others are changing the status of the term “fully vaccinated.” Check Sherpa for vaccine requirements for each destination.
- Setting Expectations- What to Expect When Travelling
Do your customers a favor and do all you can to set expectations before they head out on their trips. It’s essential to stay up to date on new protocols at airports, hotels, cruises, etc. The pandemic has impacted us all, so expect delays/changes in housekeeping, shuttle/transportation, and food and beverage services. If you have a frequent traveler, be aware of where they have traveled in the last 14-days – 30-days due to travel requirements for each country.
The world is back to travel. Use these tips to help mitigate risks your clients may face while exploring new and well-visited destinations.