A Victorian-based travel agent has created an absolute tearjerker of a video recounting the sector’s experiences during COVID-19.
Linda Forster, who is a Mobile Travel Agent and cruise specialist and runs TravLin Travel in the Mornington Peninsula’s Langwarrin, said she wanted to capture how travel agents are collectively feeling right now.
“We here in the travel agent sector are all facing our toughest time,” Forster said.
“It’s very raw, and for me and personally, I wanted a reflection point for when and if future times get tough, knowing that in getting through this, I can get through anything.”
The video features a series of news clips, quotes from agents and slides which document the experiences of travel agents during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The slides give an overview of how the sector operated pre-COVID followed by a breakdown of how the pandemic has affected the cruise and aviation industries, challenges faced by agents, the lack of government support and the effects of lockdown.
The final slide lists the ‘hopes’ of the travel agent sector, including direct government funding, an increase or extended JobKeeper, research into a COVID-safe international travel plan and recognition of agents as a vital service just to name a few.
But its the quotes from agents that had us reaching for the tissues.
“I have been in the travel industry for 20 years… Tonight, for the first time in my life, I stood in the supermarket and imagined my experience working here. With a tear in the corner of my eye. I stood still for a moment,” one agent said.
The video is accompanied by a sombre song by a local artist named Oskar Proy called Take me back.
“Being that I am a HUGE fan of ‘supporting local’ … NOW more than ever, I have chosen local talent as the background music,” Forster said.
“Oskar is a fantastic talented local singer/songwriter here on the Mornington Peninsula. He has appeared on the Voice Australia in past years and works extremely hard (when not in COVID) gigging everywhere each weekend in and around the Peninsula.”
You can watch the video below: