Monday, 2 March 2015
I've always worked in the travel industry and I love it, especially now. I began my career in the airline industry and then later joined a large retail company where I worked my way up to becoming a travel manager.
I came across Travel Counsellors' advert offering me the opportunity to start my own travel business from home. I am very family orientated and my family come first so this business opportunity attracted my attention. At that point of my career the stress of my job and the long hours often until after midnight were finally getting to me, and it frustrated me that it was taking me away from my husband and son, Rudi. I felt in my job that I was just a number pusher and it frustrated me that I was working in travel yet had never experienced any opportunities to travel!
I made the call to Travel Counsellors' head office and they were helpful in giving me all the information and they also put me in touch with a Travel Counsellor so I could call and speak with them to find out their first-hand experience. This was very reassuring for me. Four months later I resigned as travel manager of a large retail agency and I joined Travel Counsellors the very next month.
I was under the impression that I would earn less than when I was currently earning, but I was pleasantly surprised that just three months later, I was earning way more than before. Plus another surprise to me was the number of educationals that were now available to me. In my five years working for a large retail agency I hadn't been offered a single trip and I was only in my third month as a Travel Counsellor when I was given the opportunity to go on my first ever educational which was to Tanzania. It was an experience that I will remember forever! Since then I have been to Mauritius twice, once on an educational and another time when we had our annual conference. At that conference I was awarded 'Most Helpful TC' by my Travel Counsellor colleagues - this has to be my proudest moment ever!
Travel Counsellors regularly put together team challenges made up of Travel Counsellors from around the world and I was fortunate to be in the winning team where we won an all-expenses paid trip to Kalkan! This year alone I have also been on an exclusive Travel Counsellors dedicated educational to Dubai in September and London in November. I also got to experience the global Travel Counsellors conference as well as to enjoy the sights of London and do my Christmas shopping! Travel Counsellors certainly knows how to put the fun back into travel! I love travel and I love getting the opportunity to experience destinations first-hand so that I can pass this information onto my clients.
My business mix when I first started was leisure only. It has since changed to become more corporate. My business has grown through referrals. One of my leisure clients referred a corporate client to me and that corporate has since referred many more corporate clients to me. This is the biggest compliment that my clients can give me. One of the most rewarding moments to me is when my clients come back from their holiday and absolutely rave about their experience. Getting positive feedback from my corporate clients is what really makes me happy. I know that time is money and for a corporate client to take the time out of their busy schedule to thank me for arranging their travel that was seamless is hugely rewarding and satisfying.
Phenix is my favourite tool provided by Travel Counsellors - it is our own in-house dynamic packaging system allowing me to tailor-make a travel package within minutes. It has over 70,000 quality hotels, transfers, car hire, city attractions, tours and theatre tickets all of which are available 24/7 for bookings and payment. Phenix offers my clients a great deal and the margin built in helps me to earn more. I love the fact that I know that I can offer my client a product that is right for them, as opposed to what is right for the supplier and I know that it has the best pricing offering for my client.
Another favourite tool of mine is my contact centre which holds all my client information and sends me valuable prompts, for example, it sent me a reminder that one of my clients' passports was about to expire in 7 months' time. This gave me the opportunity to pick up the phone and to call my client to remind him that he would need to start the process of renewing his passport. He was blown away that I had remembered!
The support from the head office team is incredible, from the three day induction training to the business development support and the marketing tools. I couldn't run a successful business without them. It's so reassuring to know that head office is only an email or phone call away. Head office is helpful and friendly, always cheering me on and wanting me to be successful.
I work hard and have the perfect work/life balance. I believe in the phrase "if you love what you do - you will never work a day in your life". I love travel, I love helping my customers and I absolutely love being a Travel Counsellor!
In my old job I felt tired and now I feel satified . I was unhealthy before but since joining Travel Counsellors I now have the time to make healthy meals and to pick up my interests once again. I have started running again and to date I have lost 20 kg's. I am so much more relaxed, I have more time to spend with my customers and my family and my personal satisfaction is at an all-time high - I am loving life!
If you are hard working, love travel, love people and if you are passionate about offering your clients the very best in customer service then Travel Counsellors is for you. I would encourage you to pick up the phone and to give Travel Counsellors a call. They have changed my life for the better and they could change yours too.