Can't I Just Do The Research Myself For Free?
Sure, anyone can surf the web or take a book out from the library, but how much time will it take to gather the information you need to plan and execute a meaningful trip? How do you find out in what neighborhood you’re best off staying in Rio? What’s the best way to get from the airport to downtown in Hong Kong? What time of year is best for scuba diving the Great Barrier Reef? That’s where I come in, gleaning the pertinent information, answering your questions, and most of all keeping you well-informed as what to expect from the planning stages to the day of departure. Add to that my firsthand experience of many destinations and you’ll get something more than just a few lines in a guidebook. You'll get a real sense of what a given destination is like and why it’s worth seeing.
What Makes This Service Different Than That Of Any Other Travel Agency?
That’s a great question, and the answer is two-fold. First, a travel agent concerns themselves primarily with matching a product—be it a cruise, tour, or airline ticket—with your travel plans. They get paid not for what information they pass along but by receiving commission on what they sell. As a result, many agents’ expertise is limited to products, not destinations. Don’t get me wrong, the insight on which hotel is best in Honolulu or which cruise line has the best Alaskan itinerary is invaluable. But the focus here at Trip Accomplice is on providing the information that will make wherever you travel to meaningful, memorable, and more enjoyable without having YOU do the research. Many agents don’t have the time to provide such detailed destination information because they simply don’t get paid for it.
Why Is Hiring A Personal Travel Destination Consultant A Good Investment?
Consider this: Even a basic, week-long international vacation will almost always cost around $2000 a couple, and the price only goes up from there. If you’re dropping a couple of thousand dollars on a trip, it only makes sense to make sure you’re maximizing your time abroad. In addition to the cost of guidebooks, imagine having to pay yourself hourly for the time spent scouring the web and travel forums seeking to become informed of things others already know. If you consider your time as valuable, you’ll see why hiring a travel consultant is a solid investment in the success of your vacation. As a case in point, tucked away on the wild western coast of New Zealand is tiny Paparoa National Park. There you’ll find an interesting attraction called the Pancake Rocks—a coastal formation of limestone where erosion and seismic activity has sculpted the rocks into bizarre shapes that look sort of like stacks of pancakes (see top right). Arriving at sunset, the pictures I took here and the memory of breathing in the salty air and listening to the pounding surf as the sun broke through the clouds are among my favorite of the entire 3 week trip. Why do I mention this? Because unless you knew it was 1) there and 2) worth seeing, you could drive right past the park without having any idea you missed out on a natural wonder. THAT is the benefit of being informed and that is why the up-front investment is sure to reap fine dividends down the road (pun intended).
Why Hire Me?
After 15 years in the travel industry it became evident that there are two types of people that seek out travel professionals. The first are those that know what they want and are just looking for help in booking it. But more often than not, clients weren’t just looking for the cheapest flight or discounted hotel, they were looking for information: Real, practical—firsthand when possible—information that you can’t find in a travel brochure. They wanted to know more than just what they would see, but what they could expect. These clients were the ones that returned from their vacations satisfied, fulfilled and content in knowing they didn’t just get sold a vacation, but were advised. I bring that same philosophy now to you. Having personally visited over 58 countries and territories across all seven continents I feel qualified to serve as your trip accomplice & welcome the opportunity to prove it.