We’ve been talking the past two weeks about all-inclusive vacations, and I thought I’d expand a little bit on that topic. With a little help from one of the major hotel and resort companies, Iberostar Hotels and Resorts, here’s some of the reasons to consider an all-inclusive family trip to Mexico.
The Travel Factory Blog
Last week we talked about the fact that many folks are frustrated about where to go for their family vacation with the understandable concern that everyone would be happy, wherever it was. And we mentioned that we use the services of a very reliable tour operator, Funjet Vacations, to help us make those “happy and memorable plans, and have done so over 25 years.
When helping clients plan their vacations they are often frustrated because they just don’t know where to go where the whole family will be happy. A good travel agent will start the interview and try to find out what they like to do, what they have done in the past that was fun. Do they like to eat? Do they like beach stuff? Do they want a lot of activities, if so, what kind of activities? Do they want to drive or fly? How long do they want to be gone? Do they want a land based vacation or would they consider a cruise? What kind of budget are they working with? All important variables to consider!!!
One of the real pleasures we receive as travel agents is to help couples plan their honeymoon or anniversary getaway. Any time of the year is the time to make those plans, but here in the Spring, there is certainly a lot more opportunities for those activities.
As many of you know, yesterday was the annual Abilene Expo down at the Civic Center where around 175-200 business in town set up booths to introduce their products and services as well as network with other business in our city regarding keeping our economy in the Big Country vibrant and alive.
The U. S. Travel Association recently released a new survey targeting information on family vacations. This survey found that adults say their most vivid childhood recollections are of family vacations. Children surveyed also say they enjoy vacation time with parents and grandparents. This poll surveyed more than 2500 adults and 1100 youth, and some who were as young as 5 years old.
I talked a little bit at the end of January about river cruising, especially in Europe. We promoted a river cruise on the Rhine for this year in November, and it sold out by August of last year; furthermore, to take advantage of the great rate, it was fully paid, cruise and air by middle December.
I am out and about in the community in a lot of social, business, and church settings, and for the past two weeks, since the Carnival Triumph unfortunate situation, there is always someone wanting to know how my cruise business is doing. . .asking that question with a sly smile on their face. I know they’re thinking that cruise sales are in the tank. . .but in reality, they are not!! Thank goodness!!
Did you ever see that movie The Bucket List starring two of my favorite actors, Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman? Ever since that movie came out, every time I turn around someone is promoting or talking about their “bucket list”. It’s especially true in travel circles.
Something is always happening in the travel business. . .it’s seldom the same ‘ole, same ‘ole. Airfares change by the minute, conventions spring up in resorts that our client wants to go to, the weather is always unpredictable, something is always changing.
It just gets my goat when some of these on-the-spot newscasters, usually sportscasters, put a microphone in the mouth of a coach or a player and asks them, after a hard-fought loss, “how does it feel to get beat by an extra point at the last second?” The coach or player is extremely vulnerable at that moment to say exactly how they feel, and it might not be too pretty a public pronouncement. Or the politician who had just lost an election gets the question concerning his feelings about the loss. What do you expect them to say?!!
We get this response all the time when we are quoting an airfare and the caller will say, “we saw that price a whole lot less on the internet”. Our quote is directly tied to the airline, so we know it is a current rate at that particular time, but one of the important factors the caller hasn’t told us is when they saw that price a lot less. And they could have been on one of several on-line operators like Expedia, Travelocity, Kayak, Orbitz.
There is something uplifting and energizing when anticipating a vacation or a trip away from the daily activities of life. I’m certainly not a psychologist, but I’m sure there is a psychological term to identify this emotional boost to our looking forward to a trip. My observation has always been that at least 75% of the enjoyment of a trip is the positive anticipation during the planning stage.
That title certainly does not apply to this time of the year, it’s really dark during the winters up in the 49th state. But, during the summer, 18-20 hours of sunlight is commonplace. That was the one thing that really amazed me on my first trip to Alaska back in the mid-90s; we’d go to bed at 10:30PM, and the sun would still be coming through our bedroom window. It’s really not that bad though, in a day or two you are used to it, and glad that it is that way; it certainly gives you more time to do things.
Are you ready for 2013???. . .sure felt funny typing that date in today for the first time.
Last week I referred to several destinations and segments of the industry that were experiencing upticks in their current business and indications for the immediate future. Both Mexico and Israel are very positive about their tourist trade for 2013, airlines are looking at their numbers enthusiastically rising, and the cruise trade is pumped about guests scheduling vacations with them. One segment that I did not mention was the Hawaii market.
Way back in July I reported that American Airlines had a $240 million loss in the 2nd quarter and Delta reported a loss of $168 million in the 2nd quarter, but the CEO of American had told a crowd of corporate travel agents at that time that he expected their airline would return to being an industry leader by the end of the year. Well, we’re getting close to the end of the year and I haven’t heard them crowing about that yet!!
Reading an article in the Dallas Morning News a couple of months ago reminded me that I should blog some information about cruising with kids. That’s an important topic to several families who are cruising over the Christmas holidays, as well as for those who are planning Spring Break and Summer family vacations.
One of the real dilemmas families and travel agents have in planning a vacation is what to do with families of more than 4, especially if they all want to be together. Hotels and cruise lines will not allow more than four to a room, so the last one born has to sleep out in the hall!!! No not really, there are other more practical solutions but they oftentimes cost more money.