INSTITUTE will offer its certified travel agent and
certified travel counselor workshops as a pre-National Forum event
from Sept. 7 to 9. Those who successfully complete the workshop and
the test will be awarded their new designations during the National
Forum, which follows on Sept. 9, 10 and 11. The forum will be held
at the Boston Marriott Copley
ACCORDING TO THE INSTITUTE, the workshops offer
candidates the opportunity to review their studies and interact
with professionals from various areas of the industry. These
facilitated experiences offer a firm completion date to aide in
study and completion, the camaraderie of fellow candidates striving
for the same professional designation, all scheduled meals and all
testing and certification fees. Get more details at www.thetravelinstitute.com.
BESIDES MAKING CLIENTS happy by creating just the
right vacation, one of the most fun aspects of selling travel is
personally trying out the product. Fam trips typically are fun and
should always be educational. After all, the sponsoring supplier
wants something in return -- bookings. More suppliers are starting
to embrace the at-home retailer community, but are these travel
sellers, whose gross sales generally (but not always) are
substantially lower than traditional agencies, welcome on fams?
Damir Bogdanic of Sterling Vacations, says yes, they are. Sterling
operates many fams throughout the year, many of them featured in
SAYS BOGDANIC: Home-based, independent agents are
welcome on any of our fams. They are the sellers of today and
definitely of tomorrow. After 9/11, many firms, including mine, had
to let people go. But they have survived and (many) have become
home-based agents. Bogdanic said he believes the more agents learn,
the more they will sell. He added that fam participants usually can
be split into thirds: one third are high-producers already known to
Sterling; a third are agents who are selling lots of other products
and will add Sterling to their operator list, and a third are
freeloaders who use a fake ID card to gain access to the trip.
Agents can learn more about Sterlings products and its fams at www.sterlingvacations.com.
FAM OF THE WEEK
Departures: Every other Tuesday through Sept. 20
from Bangkok to Yangon via
Myanmar Airways or Thai Airways.
Length: Seven nights.
Sponsor: Myanmar Tourism Promotion Board,
Cost: $450 per person, double. Includes roundtrip
air, hotel, flights within
Myanmar, breakfast daily, transfers, sight seeing and entrance
Trip: Visits Bagan, Heho, Inle Lake, Mandalay and
Noteworthy: The companion rate is $550.
Contact: (011) 95-1 248-828, Ext. 6462 or Ext.
6653; fax: (011) 95-1
242-800; e-mail: [email protected]