"My First Clients"
Having that first client contact you can be both exciting and nerve-wracking all at the same time. I remember my very first client as a travel agent, her name was Michele. Michele was a friend of a friend who heard I recently became a travel agent. Besides the smaller bookings I'd done for friends and family before becoming a travel agent, this first client was a biggie! I felt very confident with the training I had from both Career Quest and my host agency, but I was still nervous because my first client was going on their honeymoon (no pressure) and they wanted to go for a week to Bora Bora! I was SO excited for them, but that gave way to stress and worry the entire time because I wanted this to be a trip of a lifetime for them. I dove into researching the best flights, the best resorts and took my time in doing so. I was upfront with Michele and told her I was new, and she was so patient with me. I took my time because I didn't want to miss anything! You don't want to keep your clients waiting forever to get back to them with travel information, but I'd rather take an extra day or so to make sure everything is in place properly, than make any mistakes.
My clients were very specific in what they wanted in a resort and that they wanted an over-the-water bungalow. After researching more about Bora Bora, I was familiar with where the location. I began looking into different suppliers that could help me not only put together the best honeymoon for them, but at a good price as well. I ended up using Pleasant Holidays and they were great. They were extremely familiar with Bora Bora, which is important because I've not been there yet, so it was great to talk to someone who could tell me from firsthand experience the best places to stay, etc. Something I found to be helpful for my first year as a new travel agent was to tell suppliers and others I was working with that I am a new travel agent. Sometimes when you are talking to people, they assume you know all there is to know about booking vacations, etc. and you don't. As soon as I mentioned I was a new travel agent, everyone was more than happy to walk me through the process and help me in any way they could! When I contacted Pleasant Holidays I already knew what we wanted to go with, but I needed confirmation this was a good choice since I've not traveled there. They were so kind and even let me know of a sale that was happening at the time on the over-the-water bungalows at this particular resort. The woman I spoke with explained to me why I should book my client farther out, rather than closer to land, etc. which was extremely helpful. Although the bungalows are cheaper closer to land, you are going to have people walking by and as a honeymooning couple, they were going to want their privacy. Little things I had not thought of, so I was extremely grateful for the advice given.
After booking the trip for my clients, I kept in contact with Michele and her fiancé and sent them a packing list to help them as they prepared for their trip. As soon as Pleasant Holidays sent their travel documents, I met with Michele at a local Starbucks and walked her through everything she needed to know from start to finish. They were excited...and so was I!
A week before my clients were getting ready to leave, I called the resort to double check and made sure everything was in place. The resort was very helpful setting up a gift for my clients upon arrival and setting up the free amenities the resort offered to newlyweds. People love going on vacation and love receiving freebies while on vacation, so I always send a little something to let them know I'm thinking of them on their vacation and appreciate their business. I admit, while they were gone, I thought of them every day and hoped everything was going exactly as planned. It was really more than just thinking of them - it was stress. Since then I have learned to relax and know all is going to go okay for my clients as they travel. If something comes up and they need my assistance, I'll be there to walk them through it all.
All in all, my clients trip went off without a hitch. When they returned, I sent them a "Welcome Home, Thank You for Your Business" card. They were wonderful in providing feedback to have as future reference. They are now repeat clients and usually book a big trip from me once a year. We've since built a friendship because I've gotten to know them a little better each time we talk. This is helpful because I now know their likes and dislikes, which helps in planning their future trips. I keep notes on all my clients (where they like to sit on an airplane, what type of room they prefer, etc.). From this first experience, I have made it a practice of mine to write questions down and I ask until I find the right answer! I've learned that people in the travel industry are extremely kind and extremely helpful...all we have to do is ask.
New Entry - 05/20/16
just a sample new entry.