Let’s face it: travel agents have one of the best jobs in the world.
As the backbone of the travel industry, you get make people’s wildest dreams come true every day. Not to mention perks! Jet-setting all around the world to sample travel experiences has got to be one of the best job requirements we’ve ever heard of.
But after getting a few years of experience (and a few travel miles) under your belt, what does the next step in your career look like? How could your amazing job get any better?
Well, if you’re looking for more freedom and flexibility, higher-spending clientele and the opportunity to show off your creativity and experience by tailoring premium, luxury experiences, then we may have the answer for you.
Or at least, we found someone who does. Alan Reis joined Travel Associates in 2006 because he wanted to achieve all this and more in a travel career.
Reis was looking for an opportunity to put more time and effort into the experiences he crafted for his loyal and extensive client list, in a more exclusive setting.
We caught up with Reis to find out why he took the plunge and what he’s learned along the way.
Travel Weekly: Can you please describe your job for our readers?
Alan Reis: As a Travel Advisor, the most important part of my role is to listen closely to my client’s travel plans, uncover their motivations for the travel, discuss the possibilities and then craft the itinerary of their dreams.
All my staff and I have a meticulous attention to detail, are experienced and very well-travelled, and it is our goal to use the benefits that come with that to the client. Most of our clients are repeat clients or have been referred to us. They themselves are well-travelled and often looking for new and unique experiences, so a premium, boutique travel consultancy like Travel Associates is perfect for that.
TW: How does your role at Travel Associates differ from your previous shop-front job, and what prompted you to make this step in your career?
AR: I made a career change over 13 years ago. After six years at another travel agency, I had developed a large regular client base. I wanted to look after my clients in a more comfortable and flexible environment where I could invest the time in them that I believe they deserve.
A key point of difference at Travel Associates is that we dedicate time to our clients through face to face appointments in our beautiful stores, where they are treated with meticulous care, as a priority, rather than just another number in a queue.
The clients and I love it.
TW: What do you think working under the Travel Associates banner says to your clients?
AR: To me, one word sums up the Travel Associates brand. Experience. Our highly qualified travel advisers have worked in the industry for many years, and bring this wealth of knowledge to every interaction with our clientele. In other words, you’re going to be extremely well looked after.
As I do tend to travel a bit with my role, I like to make a point of ensuring that all my clients are acquainted with the entire team in our store – so if I am not in the office, my clients are well catered to by my experienced team.
In addition to this, we can provide our clients with access to the exclusive premium experiences they’re after.
TW: What, in your opinion, is the most important ingredient to a successful travel business? How has Travel Associates helped you achieve this?
AR: I really believe that people and their experience are first and foremost the most important ingredients of success for any travel business.
At Travel Associates, our Advisers have a wealth of travel knowledge and experience, combined with excellent listening skills, which guides all of us in the way we work and the way we interact with our clients.