frequently asked questions
How do you get paid? Is it more expensive to book through you?
Suppliers such as hotels, tour operators and some transportation providers build in commission in their pricing. This is not a price that is added on to the BAR (Best Available Rate). When working with a local tour operator on certain trips, we sometimes package the trip price. The NET rates that are provided to me are discounted through contracts with their suppliers and allow me to build in commission the way it is already built into a BAR rate. The only amount that will be added to your trip is my trip management fee.
Why do you plan a trip management fee? The trip management fee covers my time, expertise and connections to great partners around the globe. This fee includes the research, planning, reconfirming and arranging non-commissionable items such as dining recommendations or reservations that are involved in a trip. This also covers managing your trip when you are on the go. If changes have to be made due to weather or delays you are enjoying a beer at the airport while your trusted travel advisor moves around reservations and arrangements. This allows you to enjoy every part of your trip, even when there is a bump in the road.
Since your salary is based on commission, are you going to only recommend higher priced luxury properties and experiences? No. While a luxury hotel or a larger suite is perfect for some, I realize that is not everyone’s desired way to travel. Some trips are a more celebratory splurge and some more about cozy and easy. I hand pick selections for your trip that are unique to you and fit your lifestyle so that you will want to continue creating amazing trips with me.
Can you book an air b & b or VRBO? Yes and No. There are outlets for travel advisors booking more elite and vetted Air B & B and VRBO properties. This doesn't mean I am able to book every home stay listed on VRBO or Air B & B type booking engines. Some home rentals that I can arrange for you can include concierge services as well either through the home rental management company or Meredith Riley Travel. Villas, cottages and home rentals are more accessible in certain destinations through villa companies, wholesalers and on-sites as well.
Can you help me get the cheapest flight? Yes and no. While I don’t personally book air I work closely with our air professionals at my host agency, Cadence who focus solely on researching, booking and monitoring clients’ air travel. Sometimes the cheapest flight is not always the best. We compare cost, comfort and most importantly schedules that work for you and your trip to have the overall most valued experience.
Do you have any good deals? Yes! More times than not I have access to the same promotions advertised to the public as well as exclusive advisor promotions that I can pass on to my clients. This does not always mean every trip will be during a time to get the best deal. I focus on tailored experiences unique to you that hold value and fluid trip pacing over the bottom line of getting the cheapest price.
Are you able to book a destination you have not yet traveled? Yes! While there are many places I have explored and can share my personal experiences, I work with an amazing network of local experts and suppliers who help plan the perfect trip on roads that you may get to travel before me.
How far in advance should I book a trip? How much would a trip to “______” cost? A lot depends on the destination, time of year and type of trip. A weekend getaway in Charleston you may want to arrange a few months in advance. A cruise or African Safari, you may want to look at least 12 months in advance. Every trip’s pricing is based on a lot of different factors; your needs and specifications, the time of year and destination. We can talk about estimates on certain aspects of a trip or you can let me know a land budget you have in mind before we dive in.
Are there perks to booking with a travel advisor? YES! In addition to being introduced to a network of amazing accommodations and tour experiences, I book and reconfirm all aspects of your trip to make sure you are in the best of hands. I am in many different consortiums such as Virtuoso, Preferred Partner, Bellini Club & Diamond Club that allow my clients to receive added amenities at the same rate, such as breakfast daily and a $100 hotel voucher. To put it simply, I help to orchestrate your adventure and make sure you are pampered and taken care of for each step of your travels.