December 4, 2008

Why Use A Virtuoso Family Travel Advisor?

Finding the best travel value is more important than ever for families. It may seem easy on the surface, as the news is filled with travel deals and promotions. But most families don’t want a “cheap” vacation; they want their vacation dreams fulfilled at the best price. As a Virtuoso Family Travel Advisor, I can help parents maximize their travel dollar and end up with a wonderful family vacation that meets, and probably even exceeds, their expectations.

MORE FOR YOUR MONEY – This is not just about price, it’s about getting what you want and need when you travel. The good news for travelers right now is not just that they can get a discounted rate or a free upgrade, but that they can negotiate for those special perks that are often “on request” or “available only at check-in.” For example, many of my Virtuoso partner hotels are willing to guarantee upgrades at the time of booking, or guarantee specific bedding requests, a particular view or location, or even connecting rooms. When combined with the standard Virtuoso amenity, usually a complimentary meal or spa credit, families can get an exceptional value.

POWERFUL RELATIONSHIPS – This is one of those times where it’s “who you know” that makes all the difference. I spend a significant amount of time networking in the industry, to develop and maintain close personal relationships with my travel suppliers. So when my clients walk into a hotel for the first time, they will be warmly welcomed and treated like a VIP. I have also been able to acquire rooms at sold out hotels during holiday periods, or secure tickets to exclusive events. In virtually every country in the world, my clients have a local support network they can count on for emergencies or special needs. This is especially comforting for families traveling abroad with children.

HAPPY KIDS = HAPPY PARENTSAnyone who has traveled with children knows that it’s a completely different ballgame. Just like at home, parents make tradeoffs on vacation to ensure the comfort and security of their children. As a Family Advisor, I know that every age group has its unique needs, and I can help find that right balance in meeting the kids’ and parents’ interests. Years of experience traveling with my own children since they were infants allows me to proactively address parents’ concerns, and gives me expert knowledge of family-friendly lodging and activities. I have taken my children backpacking, cycling, and kayaking since they were very young, so even active parents don’t need to slow down just because they have kids.

THE DEVIL IS IN THE DETAILS – The value of working with a Virtuoso Family Advisor becomes most evident after the travel reservations are made. That’s when I become my clients’ travel partner, reviewing trip logistics to make sure everything runs smoothly and no detail is left to chance. It’s easy to call an 800 number and book a room at a resort or a cabin on a cruise ship. But when you call back, you’ll probably never get that same agent again. And they certainly aren’t going to contact you to make sure your children have the correct travel documents, provide you a day to day itinerary, tell you which rail pass you should get, hire a driver who can provide a car seat, or advise you on travel insurance. I am at my clients’ service from start to finish.

As we head in to the busy holiday season, remember that the latest trends in fashion, movies, and toys will be forgotten over the years, but the memory of a wonderful family vacation will last forever. It doesn’t need to be far, it doesn’t need to be expensive. What matters is spending quality time together.

1 comment:

Betsy said...

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