Travel advisors need to keep up with the changing demands of their top clients, according to two luxury-travel experts.
The president of Global Travel Collection, a luxury division of Internova Travel Group, said after the group's conference in October that the smartest travel advisors are getting even smarter. The Covid agents spent a lot of time on new products, niches and ways to sell unforgettable experiences.
In this environment, it's important to take the time to expand your area of expertise and open up new avenues, as you can't assume you know everything.
The prep work pays off because luxury customers are looking for things they never before imagined, according to the executive vice president of the Signature Travel Network.
We are at an important and significant point right now, which is more important than 9/11. Well-to-do families have done well during the Pandemic, and the great growth in their wealth has brought a new optimism that has caused them to reorient their lives.
The Range Rover and the Picasso are not the top priorities. They want to go away and be pampered. They want their travel advisor to take care of everything.
Travel advisors need to approach luxury customers with a new level of personalization. Everything is tailored. People want to be in their own bubble, they want their own photographer, they want their own experiences.
They used to want to get into the Vatican, now they want to have coffee with the pope.
"Private, private, private" is the slogan, according to Licea. Private jets, private island villas, private tours.
People like the seclusion, the time with friends and family, and the ability to easily venture out into the community around them. As the vaccine for children and boosters for adults become widely available, luxury clients are looking again at Europe, cruises and intimate, small-group tours.
They are filling up fast.
She said that customers should come in with at least three or four options, and be prepared to take any one that is available. I cannot overstate the importance of planning.
Maza told the Signature agents to always think about the upgrade. "'once in a lifetime' is now." If you have a client going to Singapore, put them at Raffles.