Building Momentum


Dear Travel Agents/Advisors,

We are closer than we expected. We can almost taste the victory which will pay for all the hard times we have invested in this great profession.

I read many people saying, even venting, in groups about how hard it has been to spend hours and hours on the phone trying to talk to a human being on the other end, looking for answers, eager to serve their clients for a commission that is not going to happen.

The good news is that many more travelers have decided to reschedule their travels instead of asking for a refund.

The good news is that those commissions will come later on.

The good news is that so many frustrated travelers who had to spend hours on the phone trying to “find” a human being to talk to at a search engine travel company where they booked online will now be looking for a reliable travel agent/advisor for their next very much desired vacation.

Many travel agents/advisors are sharing pictures of destinations, and that is good. My suggestion is to also show souvenirs (maybe your own) from different parts of the world. Maybe write a few words about where they come from, and why you bought them. That helps to show a bit more of who you are, helps to build a relationship that this traveler is looking for, and shows that someone cares, and that you may have something in common with each other.

Another idea is to share personal pictures of your trips, maybe even of food, and talk about it.

You need to build momentum, give yourself a chance to introduce who you are, how much you care, and how you believe that each and every client counts.

We can see a bright and shining light at the end of the tunnel for travel agents/advisors, even stronger than before. Take advantage of this opportunity and show how much you can shine!


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What About Cruises?


Dear Travel Agents/Advisors,

What about cruises?

Well, as I could have predicted, once a cruise addict or cruise lover, always a believer in cruises. The data shows that 76% of cruises have been rescheduled for later, and only 24% were cancelled.

Also, data shows that there was an increase in bookings of cruises from last year versus this year.

These factors alone show that people believe that cruise lines will comply with CDC regulations and will do everything to make every single cruise a great experience again.

Now, I believe that new ships will be delayed so they can be better ready for new regulations and the safety of cruisers and crew, like:

  • Bigger and better medical facilities, with space to isolate passengers if needed.
  • More sinks throughout the ships, so passengers can properly wash their hands.
  • Fewer inside cabins or bigger inside cabins in case of another pandemic, where passengers can be confined to their rooms.
  • Bigger dining rooms so tables can be placed at a greater distance from each other
  • Maybe even bigger entertainment rooms to maintain social distance.

In terms of existing ships, I believe, that like the airlines, they will sell fewer rooms and slowly start back to avoid Covid-19 contagion.

  • The buffet rooms will not be self-service, but trained crew will be serving the food. Cutlery and cups will be given out by the crew, and many will go back to disposable (environmentally safe ones).
  • No more self-service coffee, ice cream by the pool, or even water cups.
  • Rooms will be deeply cleaned 2 times a day.
  • Elevator buttons, and handrails throughout the ship will be cleaned hourly or even more often.
  • Each room might have an alcohol gel dispenser close to the bathroom and/or door.
  • Bathrooms in the public areas will have automatic doors to exit the room (not individual stalls) so after washing hands, one doesn’t need to touch the doorknob.
  • People’s temperature will be checked regularly: once they arrive on the ship, when they go on every excursion, and before entering the theatre and before going to the dining room.
  • Passengers over 70 years old will need a letter from their doctor certifying that they are healthy enough to go to a cruise.
  • Boarding times will be more restrictive and more enforced to avoid having so many people at the port at once.
  • There will probably be a 24-hour turn over, instead of less than 12 hours, so rooms and the whole ship can be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected.
  • Travel Insurance could possibly change. Some policies will cost more, and I believe that cruises will make it mandatory to purchase travel insurance.
  • More medical staff, with better training, and rooms for isolation if needed.
  • Excursions will have big buses with fewer people to allow for more social distance.
  • Some destinations will be cancelled for now based on how Covid-19 cases are appearing.

These are my beliefs based on what I have read and learned from cruise lines so far.

Again, I believe this is all great news for travel agents/advisors. More and more people will be booking cruises, and first-time cruisers will soon be back once they see how safe and wonderful cruise life is.

What have you heard? I want to hear from you!


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Silver Lining


Dear Travel Agents/Advisors,

I could easily make a list of all the terrible things that could possibly happen to Travel Agents/Advisors. As I have posted my strong beliefs about how travelers will be changing their thoughts in a positive way towards travel agents, I am sad to see that some people believe that nothing will change.

I am not telling you that I know it all, but I was lucky enough to love history classes in school, and by studying this subject, we understand how the world evolves. People change based on their needs and their experiences, especially the ones that have been negative.

Most travelers who had to deal with search engines and online travel agencies during the problems caused by Covid-19 and experienced how hard it was to get their money back (if they ever did) will definitely try to deal with a travel agent/advisor the next time they travel.

That is a silver lining – after this pandemic more travelers will be going back to travel agents instead of search engines.

Since airlines, hotels, cruises, tours are all down right now, they need money to survive. If you check prices right now for future travel, you can get great deals for your clients. Let me say it again, for future dates.

Present options to your clients together with a quote for Travel Insurance (CFAR) or check how flexible suppliers are in changing dates.

A lot of people working from home are dreaming of a vacation away from family, pets and even their own homes. Let their dreams become reality as soon as this pandemic allows people to travel and show them what a great travel agent/advisor you are. This is a silver lining for everyone.

What about all your clients who have lost their jobs? Please check on them. It has been a hard time and they need all the support they can get. Be your best self. People always remember who was there for them when they were down. Some are so depressed that they can’t even talk on the phone. Send them a Thinking of You card, and if you can, send an Amazon gift card or a basket of something nice. You will feel good about making a little difference in someone’s life. Trust me, those clients will remember, and they will go back to work knowing how much you cared.

That is the silver lining for you, for them, and for the history of the world.

Let’s get out of this pandemic with something positive: the way we feel about each other.

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Bringing out the best in everyone


Dear Travel Agents/Advisors,

How can we be grateful and find happiness during this horrible pandemic that has killed many people so far, and disrupted so many lives?

Those who have read my previous blogs know that it is my commitment in life to be resilient, and try to bring hope and cheer to those who need it and are open to that.

If you ask me specifics about how Travel Agents/Advisors can spend their time now until (hopefully only April 30th) while staying safe at home, it would be to reach out to prospective clients and those who are already clients. They are all people who are feeling very vulnerable, and are eager to hear hopeful news.

Travelers will want to go back to traveling safely as soon as they can. How about getting them some great deals for New Year’s? How about 2021 (with no virus!)

Just don’t push sales down their throats; show compassion, let them know how vulnerable and real you are (after all, you are not a search engine!) You too have feelings and are ready to be a sounding board for them, make any changes they need and will give them the best advice. Be sure to especially recommend Travel Insurance.

We all know that people who booked travel and hotels with search engines are now stuck. If they contacted the hotels, they can’t get their refunds. We also know that people who used travel agents/advisors are safe and getting their money back.

Use this time as an investment to reach out to clients you haven’t had time to keep in touch with. Tell them how you are working to make sure you will always be on their side and protect their safety first. Tell them how you believe that the travel industry will come back because no traveler can survive without recharging. Tell them how you believe in Travel Insurance (maybe even CFAR – cancellation for any reason). Tell them why you are the right advocate for their travels.

Connect, be kind, be yourself.

Follow me at:
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Instagram @ travelwithrosana
Blogs @www.