Everything starts with thoughts that turn into words that morph into action. Every day, we imagine a world where travel isn't just a destination; it’s a kaleidoscope of experiences, each one uniquely crafted to be as personal as a fingerprint.
Words matter. I dislike the term “travel agent.” We can no longer be agents or order-takers. Computers, apps, and OAs have commodified that. We must be simply indispensable. We are the wow factor. The secret sauce while ensuring that every “t” is crossed and every “I” dotted.
In this article, I wanted to look backwards and forwards, as we find ourselves on a daily journey of discovery—a journey to rekindle the fire of passion for our profession. Each letter of the alphabet reveals a facet of our role, an aspect of our daily quest to transform travel into more than just a trip; to make it an experience, an emotion, and a lifelong memory.
Join me on a journey through the ABCs of Travel that inspire me and hopefully you.
A – Accessible Adventure Awaits:
We are the masters of unlocking life’s adventures. We paint possibilities, grounded in reality, hating to say NO. Where there is a will, there could be a way. We don’t get to go on every experience we plan, yet we are privileged to share the thrill of anticipation. I call it #TravelDreams2Memories.
B - Be the Memory Makers:
We define experiences that imprint cherished memories, whether it's families laughing, couples rekindling their love, or solo travelers finding their unique path, we are the architects of unforgettable memories.
C - Create Connections:
We are much more than planners; we build bridges between people and the places they dream of. We offer the vocabulary of local traditions, gastronomic delights, and hidden treasures that transform a trip into a journey of meaningful connections, new and old, to create priceless treasures.
D - Discover Hidden Gems:
Part of the thrill of being a travel agent is the discovery of hidden treasures that are concealed to the untrained eye. We are bounty hunters, uncovering charming chateaus, villas, B&Bs in remote villages, quirky local festivals, and the best-kept secrets of every destination. It's our mission.
E - Embrace Every Travel Style:
To be successful, unless you choose to micro-focus on a niche, we must know the vocabulary of a diverse spectrum of travel styles, from luxury seekers to adventure enthusiasts, and culture aficionados to relaxation connoisseurs, including special needs. It's about what makes each traveler's heart race and then curating experiences that resonate with their individual style. We must be chameleons, adapting to suit each client’s desires.
F - Foster Wanderlust:
Travel is more than a noun. It’s an adverb, adjective, and verb simultaneously. We foster wanderlust in ourselves, and it ignites the same passion in our clients.
G - Grasp the Cultural Threads:
We are cultural ambassadors. Understanding and respecting local cultures is a cornerstone of our profession. We guide our clients through the intricacies of traditions, languages, and customs, ensuring each experience is memorable, respectful, and enriching.
H - Harness the Power of Personalization:
Personalization is the key to unlocking lifelong fans who shun cookie-cutter vacations; for experiences that reflect their personalities and desires that resonate with their hearts.
I - Illuminate the Path:
We are navigators of the complex world of travel. We illuminate their path, making it easier to express informed choices filled with hope and joy.
J - Juggle Like a Pro:
As master jugglers, we must expertly multitask research, bookings, and suppliers while being psychologists, fielding our customer’s inquiries, always with a smile.
K - Kindness is King in Customer Service:
Kindness and empathy are our secret weapons. Our role is about making travelers feel valued, heard, and supported. By infusing kindness into our interactions, we create lasting impressions and cultivate loyal clients who might just turn into friends or family.
L - Love Your Job:
Passion is a driving force to share OUR love for travel. This authentic love of travel enhances our lives. Our business always has perks of pleasure, and vice versa.
M - Master Efficiency:
Efficiency is our ally. Time is our only non-renewable resource. They want to enrich their quality of life, to spend it on experiences, not logistics. Mastering the art of efficient travel planning makes every journey memorable for them and us. Don’t be afraid to charge for your time.
Since the alphabet does not heed word counts, I hope that these “A-M” words are both familiar and aspirational, and you will be excitedly awaiting Part 2, otherwise referred to as “The N-Z of Words that Matter!
Seriously, especially in these times, in a world where we must wear unimaginable hats; from dream weavers to crisis managers to memory makers, this journey is not just a profession; it's a calling. It's our passionate love affair with the world and the moments that make life truly extraordinary. Each letter, each word, becomes a destination on our remarkable journeys, filled with infinite possibilities. Here's to igniting the spark of inspiration, innovation, and a bit of good humor that keeps us and our industry alive and thriving.
Randi Winter is known as the Passion Driven Connector, turning dreams into priceless memories. Currently, she is co-authoring a book on the Future of Cruising, curating global celebrity chef, sommelier, and voluntourism experiences benefitting global causes, creating passion-to-purpose experiences with collaborative experts, writing as a freelance contributor to TMR and Inclusive: The Magazine. She is a mentor and Board member for Lost Canadians as well as Diabetes and Me, a 501 (3) c, and more.