Tag: COVID-19

What to Expect While Traveling During the Pandemic

What to Expect While Traveling During the Pandemic

Ready to Travel?

What to Expect While Traveling During The Pandemic

MARIA DIEGO

Since March 2020, the world was dramatically changed by the global pandemic. The travel industry was virtually shut down overnight, with hotels, suppliers, and travel agencies scrambling to stay afloat while also processing refund after refund for clients who were unable to travel. Upon reopening, hotels have struggled with ever-changing government restrictions, balancing supply and demand, and meeting the expectation of the customer with so many variables that affect the overall customer experience.

In this blog, I’m going to outline what it’s like to travel during this global pandemic based on my personal experiences at seven hotels and resorts in the last three months. My clients have also provided feedback on dozens of hotels and resorts with varying experiences related to social-distancing, health and safety measures, and services provided (or not provided). The travel industry has gone through a radical shift in very little time, so everything from airlines to hotels to tour operators will continue to transform over the coming years to adapt to this new reality. I hope this feedback serves to guide you and your family as you plan future travel, and set your expectations correctly so that you can make the most of travel during this most unusual of times.

5 Things to Remember Before You Travel

1. Expect the Unexpected

Ive always felt the best travelers are those who know how to roll with the punches.  This has never rung more true than when traveling during the Coronavirus pandemic. As a professional travel planner and owner of the luxury travel agency, Diego Travel, an independent affiliate of McCabe World Travel and part of the worlds leading Virtuoso travel network, I like to plan out every detail of my clientsvacations.  That way, from the moment they leave their homes until the moment they arrive back again, they have a pretty clear vision of what to expect from their laid-out itinerary.  That doesnt always mean that everything goes according to plan, so I am always available to help my clients make any necessary changes and adjustments to work through the unexpected. 

In the past, rolling with the punches might have meant accepting a flight cancelation with grace and the challenges that come along with that, or changing a tour date due to rainy weather.  All of these circumstances are generally out of everyones control, but having a travel advisor to rely on is the best way to arrive to a quick resolution.  Today, those punches might feel a lot more frequent and a lot harder to deal with, which makes it especially important to work with a travel advisor, so that you are not left wasting your precious vacation time scrambling to work things out on your own. Having said that, my recommendation is that anyone traveling during this time should go into their trip with an open mind and positive attitude so that you can enjoy and make the most of your trip even when encountering the limitations of travel during these unstable times.

Bummer! Kids club is closed

2. Set Flexible Expectations Prior to Departure

Every state and every country has different travel restrictions and guidelines to follow during the age of coronavirus.  Now more than ever, I am advocating to use a travel professional to plan your travel.  Dont rely on your cousins feedback who visited last month.  A big buzz word during this global pandemic has been fluid.  The rules and regulations are fluid and change on the daily, and sometimes hourly, basis.  So book your travel plans with someone who can coach you on not only what to expect, but also what testing youll need, when youll need it and where to get it.

Dont want to get tested in order to travel?  Thats fine, there are still plenty of options that your travel advisor can help you explore.

Now, choosing your destination is only half the battle.  Each state has different policies for indoor dining, mask-wearing policies, allowed activities (like spa and gym), thereby affecting the functionality of hotels and resorts.  Youll want to be fully aware prior to making your plans of what will be available to you and what will not.  Are you OK with not having limited activities for children and no kids club? If the spa is unavailable, are you okay with that? What about indoor dining?  If the answer is no, then we had better look elsewhere.

Aside from the hotel policies themselves, another factor to consider are other guests and their general behavior.  I have anecdotal feedback from multiple clients that hotel guests in Georgia and South Carolina behave differently than hotel guests in California.  Thats not to say there is a right or wrong, but you have to decide what you feel comfortable with in order to fully enjoy your vacation time. One of the advantages of using a travel advisor is that we can go over the nuances in the travel experience from one destination to another or even hotels within the same destination.  Another suggestion is to read my blog Ready to Travel, which guides you on 5 ways to travel safer.

Expect limited dining option while traveling in the age of COVID

3. Check Destination Policies at Time of Booking and Again Prior to Departure

Policies are changing daily, not just by the hotels themselves, but due to state and county Coronavirus regulations.  In one such instance, housekeeping was provided at the time of booking, but by the time the guest checked in, the service was no longer being offered.  Its also possible that travel requirements change, and the last thing you want is to be taken by surprise when you arrive to the airport.  

In July, we visited three beach resorts in Laguna Beach, California, all offering a pretty unique experience when it came to Covid-measures.  Because California was not allowing indoor dining at that time, the hotel that was most affected by these restrictions was the Ritz Carlton Laguna Niguel in Dana Point.  All but one of their restaurants offered no outdoor seating, with 180blu being the only option for outdoor patio seating at high tables that were more appropriate for bar food than for gourmet dining.  Their solution was to have all other food and beverage orders placed through private dining, and then delivered in take-out boxes to your choice of Raya, their indoor restaurant space with wide ocean views, or to your hotel room.  For many, this could be cumbersome and uncomfortable after a multi-day stay at this resort.  While I loved the location of this resort, its restrictions made the stay quite challenging in a number of ways.

By contrast, the Montage Laguna Beach had two outdoor dining restaurants, plus poolside dining, which made it feel like a hotel stay reminiscent of pre-Covid times.  The property itself is a much more indoor/outdoor living feel than the Ritz Carlton, however even here dining options were somewhat limited.

At all of the properties we stayed at, including the Ritz Carlton Laguna Niguel, Montage Laguna, and the Monarch Beach Resort, Diego Travel clients receive daily complimentary breakfast for 2, a $100 hotel/spa credit, plus a priority room upgrade when available. These additional amenities are combinable with whatever promotion the resort offers, and often times we have access to exclusive promotions for Virtuoso partnerships.  Not to mention booking with a Virtuoso agency guarantees our clients are given the VIP treatment that they deserve!

Checking into a hotel the age of Covid-19

4. Be Patient and Practice Empathy

After the travel industrys economic decimation, we have proven our resiliency in an industry that few people understand unless youve been in it.  Millions of people were laid off or furloughed, and when travel began to return, hotels struggled with rehiring staff and maintaining margins that might lessen the costly blow of a property that had zero income for months on end.

I gently reminded my clients, especially those who traveled to a hotel within weeks of reopening, that it would be an imperfect stay, but certainly filled with people who were trying their hardest to steady a sinking ship. I expect that service may not be up to par to what luxury travelers had come to expect pre-Covid.  I also expect that the issues we will see in the coming months as the world begins to open up will take time to correct themselves.  The travel industry will take time to heal the deep wounds it has been dealt.  So I would just ask all travelers to be patient and gracious during this unsteady recovery, and support small businesses when you can. If you know a travel advisor, use one. Tip generously to the waiter whos dashing between four tables to keep all the customers happy and fed.  Frequent boutique hotels or consider upgrading your room to a suite.  Our industry is one based on customer service, and I have never experienced a more collaborative and supportive group of people who will bend over backward to make their customer happy.

Networking during Virtuoso’s anual conference

5. Relationships Matter

The emergence of online travel agencies (OTAs), such as Expedia, Booking and others, in the early 2000s was the most historically significant thing to happen to the travel industry.  It transformed the way the consumer purchased travel, making it incredibly easy for everyone to directly book flights, hotels and tours. As these OTAs became more and more successful they merged and grew into the two juggernauts that now control most of the online travel industry under the guise of their many subsidiaries. Did you know that Expedia controls Travelocity,  Hotels.com, Orbitz, Trivago, VRBO, etc while Booking controls Priceline, Kayak, Open Table, etc? The power that these OTAs now have has come at the expense of not only travel providers such as hotels and tour operators by dictating exorbitant commissions but also at the expense of travelers who have to pay more so that those same travel providers are able to afford paying the commissions demanded by the OTAs. By working under a different model, Virtuoso travel agents have cultivated strong and lasting relationships with hoteliers and service providers, that allow us to work with our travel partners to go above and beyond for our clients.

Were in the relationship business,says Matthew Upchurch, the CEO of the Virtuoso network, the premiere consortium for travel agencies, suppliers and hotels.  It is the emotional capabilities that make us irreplaceable.”  While an online booking may look like an easy way to book travel, it is not the best means to the end result.  This has never been more true as it is today, when constant changes in policies demand a human connection. If you dont believe me just ask anyone who has spent hours trying to deal with a change or refund from an OTA. My job as a Virtuoso advisor is not just to know my clients and understand what they value, but also to maintain a relationship with the other side – the hotels and suppliers.  In this way, when I book my client with the sales manager at Montage Palmetto Bluff for example, Heather knows my clients value the view over proximity to the restaurants (or vice versa!), they get an automatic upgrade at time of booking, and the general manager greets them by name when they walk into the lobby.  

Gone are the days when OTAs have the leg up on better value.  The hotels shell out exorbitant commissions to these OTAs, so its a better business model for the hotel itself to work directly with travel advisors and travel agencies, particularly those who work with highly-valued clientele like Diego Travel clients.  As a proud affiliate of McCabe World Travel, our preferred partnerships with brands such as Four Seasons, Belmond, Rosewood Hotels, Ritz Carlton, and many more luxury brands, offers access to exclusive rates and value-added amenities.

10 Things to Expect While Traveling in the Age of Coronavirus

  • Reduced airline and airport staff
  • Health and temperature screenings at some airports
  • Limited flight routes and schedules
  • Obligatory use of masks while at the airport and throughout the flight
  • No food and beverage service onboard
  • Limited bellman, room service and housekeeping services
  • Outdoor dining only at some destinations and limited menus and restaurant options
  • Limited access to restaurants, gyms and spas
  • Limited services such as kids club or group classes
  • Significant changes or limitations to group tours

Don’t forget to practice social distancing while traveling during the pandemic

A Note on Travel in 2020 and Beyond

To summarize, these changes to travel are ever-changing and no one knows if they will be here to stay or when things will go away.  How long will the word quarantine be a part of our everyday vocabulary, or how long will we all be required to wear masks in public?  Nobody knows, though I wish I had a crystal ball.  All I know is that those of us who work in travel are committed to getting the world back to it, even if the speed at which is comes back is more of a sputtering rather than a full-speed ahead.  As you look ahead to your vacation days for the rest of 2020, or  begin to plan the momentous trip youre looking forward to for 2021 to make up for lost time, heed my advice on this one.  If you’ve never experienced the professionalism of a well-planned vacation by a travel advisor, or havent used a travel agent since the 1980s, now is the time to venture into a relationship that you wont regret.  Research to find an advisor that understands your needs, takes time to get to know you, and has relationships with the global market.  It may just be the best relationship you establish for 2021.


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What to expect while traveling during the pandemic

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5 Safer Alternatives for your summer family vacation

MARIA DIEGO

Summer travel is normally the time when we take that annual family vacation, spending a week at our favorite beach resort or an extended journey flying across the world to places like Europe and Australia. Instead, families are now exchanging their planned summer vacation for domestic travel options that offer social-distancing and reassurance during a time that is nothing but uncertain. There has been a lot of talk about road trips, American beaches, national parks, and even luxury RVs. Logistically, this can all feel a bit overwhelming. When planning our summer travel, we normally don’t have to think about things like stopping in a roadside public restroom or how long it takes to get from Point A to Point B. With a global pandemic, these details have changed and are now important factors to consider when mapping out your family vacation plans.

In this blog, I’m going to list 5 alternatives to travel in a safer and smarter way this summer. These are ideas based on my own meetings and webinars with luxury travel experts and global partners over the last few months. The travel industry has gone through a radical shift in very little time, so everyone from airlines to hotels to tour operators will continue to transform over the coming years to adapt to this new reality. I hope these options serve as a travel guide and offer an alternative solution for your summer vacation.

Triple Creek Ranch

1. Resorts and Lodges with Wide Open Spaces

Many lodges and resorts around the USA are located on sprawling acres of land from the beaches of California to coastal New England and everywhere in between. Many hotels have pivoted to accommodate the needs of their clients with increased safety measures and implementing new programs. Many resorts and lodges also include private stand-alone villas or bungalows that may not even be advertised on their website. – another reason why it’s best to use a travel expert, ie: travel advisor. I am going to highlight a few of my top picks for resorts and lodges that offer wide open spaces and what they are doing to keep you safe.

Rosewood Miramar Beach

Rosewood Miramar | Montecito, California

The Rosewood brand has relied on a panel of experts to establish Caruso’s Health & Safety Standards to implement at the only luxury resort directly on the beach in Southern California. It’s also the only Forbes Travel Guide five star spa in Santa Barbara and when you book with Diego Travel, you’ll receive a $100 spa credit. Hello! Who doesn’t need a massage right now?! This property also has a private 2-bedroom vacation home, adjacent to the hotel that has its own private kitchen, lawn and covered terrace and comes with all the same luxury amenities as staying in the hotel. The hotel is even offering private picnics on their expansive lawn for those who prefer not to dine in-restaurant.

Insider Tip: Pair your visit to this Santa Barbara property with a visit to the wine and horse country of Santa Ynez Valley – Santa Ynez, Los Olivos, and Solvang. Or, if you’re feeling more adventurous or traveling with kids, try glamping at El Capitan luxury campground.

The Resort at Paws Up | Just Outside of Missoula, Montana

The Resort at Paws Up | Just Outside of Missoula, Montana

The Resort at Paws Up is the ultimate family vacation destination with the combination of outdoor adventure and the comforts of a luxury 5 star hotel. This lodge, among many others, is offering a private summer camp counselor for each family, to ensure your children are entertained while also practicing social-distancing. They’re also offering mom and dad a private office space to work remotely if needed. This 37,000 acre ranch has luxury vacation homes, luxury camping tents, and even an isolated luxury island lodge in the middle of Salmon Lake. When you book with Diego Travel, you’ll receive complimentary round-trip airport transfers, bottle of wine, top of the priority list for upgrades, a $300 resort activity credit, and when you book a stay through June 30, 2020, an addition $500 resort credit.

Insider Tip: Utilize our Custom Trip Planning to curate a comprehensive activities plan for your vacation and ensure availability for all the activities you want to do while there.

Chatham Bars Inn | Cape Cod, Massachusetts

Chatham Bars Inn | Cape Cod, Massachusetts

Next up are the ocean residences which have their own gated community of seclusion and privacy. Perfect for the honeymooners or those looking to disconnect, this area has its own infinity edge pool and picturesque stretch of beach. They range from a nature view room to three-bedroom suites and offer more peace and quiet than anywhere else (perhaps excluding Broadfield). Each unit is uniquely decorated but still come with all the amenities provided in the main building and beach club. The suites include a full kitchen and washer and dryer, making it perfect for those extended stays that still want all the hotel amenities and daily housekeeping. Just keep in mind that the distance to the main building and the beach club is within walking distance, but may be a 5-10 minute walk.

Insider Tip: I love the Ocean Residences for honeymooners, anniversary celebrations, families with older children, and smaller multi-generational families looking to all share one unit.

Sea Island Cottages

Blackberry Farm | Knoxville, Tennessee

Blackberry Farm had been on my bucket list for awhile, and when I finally had a chance to travel there for a weekend getaway with a group of girlfriends last December, it did not fail to impress. This 4,200 estate on the rolling hills of the Great Smoky Mountains has plenty of mountain air, a sunrise that’s worth waking up early for, and resident animals that will make your heart swoon. Truffle dogs, anyone? If you know, you know. If you don’t know, you have to go! Did I mention that the all-inclusive Relais & Chateaux farm to table meals might leave you 15 pounds heavier than when you arrived, but it is oh, so worth it. Just like at Paws Up, Blackberry Farm is offering families a private camp counselor to operate their usual summer kids activities and summer camp to ensure everyone’s safety. The best part? When you book with Diego Travel, you’ll receive 15% off published rates, a welcome amenity, $100 spa credit, upgrade and early check-in/late check-out upon availability.

Insider Tip: If you’re 15 people or more, you are considered a group and will require special dining arrangements. I was able to arrange a private dinner in the wine cellar dining room complete with a tour by the property’s wine sommelier that made our stay extra special. I’d love to make your family reunion, wedding party, bachelor/bachelorette weekend, or honeymoon extra special too.

2. Luxury Vacation Rentals or Private Villas

Not all vacation home rentals are created equal and we’ve all heard a nightmare story or two about Airbnb. When considering safer summer travel options, a private home or villa seems an obvious choice, but buyer beware. There are many online agencies (like Airbnb) that don’t vet their properties or have cleaning standards, quality control, or readily available customer service. That is why you should enlist the travel guidance of Diego Travel to align you with agencies that specialize in private vacation home and villa rentals and individually vet each property.

  • Quality Control
    When recently inquiring about a particular home with a partner agency, I asked, “My client is concerned about the quality of the beds and bedding. Can you tell me about that?” I received a response immediately. “Our contract requires mattresses to be replaced every 5 years and the mattresses in this home were replaced last year.” Now how’s that for knowing their product, customer service, and reliability?
  • Destination Experts

    We partner with agencies that have destination specialists that have personally been to every single property they represent. A client who was planning a multi-generational trip to Costa Rica inquired about a gorgeous property with an infinity edge pool overlooking the ocean. The pictures online were amazing, but then I told our villa specialist that the family had 3 young toddlers in the group. “Unfortunately, that villa has several areas with steep stairs and and balconies without child-friendly railings. That won’t work for them.” Had they booked online without that personal feedback, that dream vacation could have easily turned into a nightmare. Whether you’re booking a luxury vacation rental in Kiawah Island, South Carolina or a private villa in the Caribbean, leave it to the travel experts at Diego Travel to help lead you to the right option for you.

  • Customer Service

    If there’s one thing that you should take away from this crisis regarding travel, I hope that it is the value of using a travel advisor. After months of working tirelessly in handling cancelations, negotiating refunds, and rescheduling travel plans, I can proudly say that none of my clients ever had to pick up a phone or be placed on hold for hours with an airline or online travel agency. Our villa partners were amazing and flexible with cancelation policies, offering refunds, and getting back to us in a timely fashion. I know the same cannot be said for those stuck with online travel agencies. To inquire about booking a vacation rental home or private villa at any budget, please fill out this form or contact us.

    Insider Tip: Many boutique hotels offer private villas on-property that provide the privacy but also the full-service amenities of a luxury hotel.

3. Luxury RVs

If you’re feeling the need to get on the open road and explore this summer, the RV option just might be the safest way to do that. You would have less points of contact with other people than probably any other form of travel, under a few conditions. Here are some factors to consider before hopping online and shopping for the cheapest RV rental you can find.

  • RV Cleanliness
    You will want to find out what kind of cleaning procedures the RV rental company has in place. Keep in mind that these are basically enclosed tiny homes on wheels, and other people will have occupied that space before you arrive. As a self-proclaimed OCD germaphobe, I would like to know who is cleaning these spaces and how. What is the turnaround time between rentals? And just like hotels, RVs should have a star rating but they don’t. So you can find everywhere from 1 start to 5 star products out there on the market. When I check into a hotel, I personally need and expect 5 star cleanliness, so I’d want no less than that when renting an RV.
  • RV Safety
    If I’m going to pile my family onto a moving home on wheels and my kids are running around without seat belts, you bet I want to know how many miles are on its engine and how often it’s serviced. Car accidents are the third-leading cause of death in the United States, and with everyone gearing up for summer road trips, this statistic should make you stop and think. If you’ve never driven an RV and plan to drive for 8+ hours per day over the course of a week or more, that risk factor increases. Our reputable partner agency that specializes in luxury RV rentals provides the option of having a professional private driver service at an additional cost. It’s a cost that in my opinion is well worth it.
  • Customer Service

    Now that you’ve rented your RV and google mapped your way around where you want to go, you’re all set, right? Wrong! There are many factors in planning the logistics of your RV road trip. You could spend hours pre-vacation trying to figure this all out, relying on the “wisdom” of online forums, or you could make a phone call to us and let us handle it. Our travel partners are a team of experts in the specific logistics required to ensure an amazing experience at national parks, festivals, race tracks, and many other destinations. From door-to-door pick-up and drop-off to setting up your RV for you at each destination, the white-glove service they offer ensures this will be an unforgettable RV vacation in a good way!

    Insider Tip: Our RV specialist partners offer pre-set itineraries for all over the USA or they can customize a bespoke itinerary that fits the number of days or destinations you want.

4. National Park Tours with the Travel Expertise of a Destination Management Company

I love our country’s national parks and think that not enough Americans visit them on a normal year. However, these are not normal times and many Americans have turned their sights to places such as Yellowstone National Park or Glacier National Park. You may be thinking that with all the international restrictions on travel, this summer will be the perfect opportunity to go. The problem is, there are many like-minded Americans that are planning for the exact same destination as you. Here’s a break down on why you’d be smart to involve a US travel expert to get involved with your trip planning. In the travel industry, we call them Destination Management Companies or DMCs. In essence, they are a fountain of knowledge on their local region of expertise and always elevate your travel experience no matter where you go, providing professional travel hacks throughout your vacation and employ the guides that will take you around. Here’s how it works:
  • Collaboration
    As a travel advisor, I get to know you with an initial complimentary phone call or over a cup of coffee. Ideally, this conversation includes anyone who will have a say in the travel plans. Whether it’s one person or the whole family, I like to get to know everyone so that I can incorporate value for each traveler. Once I have a general idea of your likes, needs and budget, I collaborate with our partners to map out an itinerary. While some clients prefer to have an open-ended outline with the flexibility of playing it by ear, others like to know what they’re doing from the moment they wake up to when they go to sleep. There’s no right or wrong way to travel, but we work with you to create the family vacation that fits your style.
  • Area Expertise

    Our partners are United States travel experts and anticipate that this summer is going to be a busy time for our national parks. Because of the volume of business that they manage, they have a personal relationship with the national park hotels or lodges and may be able to get you in when a property seems to be otherwise unavailable. They’re also privy to alternative off-the-beaten-path routes that are less crowded and have a better view, for example. One of the higher-end luxury partners we work with, Abercrombie & Kent USA, is offering an itinerary that covers 3 national parks in 7 days. Sounds impossible, right? They take you and your family by private jet to get the best of all worlds – luxury hotels, social-distancing and seeing all the natural beauty our beautiful country has to offer. Want to know more? Contact us!

  • Cost Transparency

    One of the best things about working with a travel advisor and DMC is having an up-front cost for your trip with no hidden surprises or needing to estimate your per day spend once you go. Whatever your budget is, whether it includes that private jet or not, we all would like to know exactly how much something is going to cost before we buy, right? Everything is paid for by the time you depart for your trip, so you can just enjoy your vacation and not worry about the bill at the end of it.

5. Private Jets and Private Yachts

Have you noticed a theme here? Everyone is looking for privacy, distance, and peace of mind if you’re looking to travel smarter. Other alternatives to this equation could be flying in a private plane or renting a private boat, private catamaran or private yacht. It may not be accessible for all travelers, but if you have the means, you might be surprised to find it could be a very practical way to travel, particularly when traveling with a larger group.

  • Private Jet & Private Yacht Standards

    Just like with renting an RV, before googling “cheapest private jet” and booking it, you want to ask some important questions. For either of these options, the value of safety standards, cleanliness and professionalism are extremely important factors to consider. Just like I don’t advise renting an Airbnb, I don’t advise chartering a boat or plane off a direct-to-owner website. If you do this, contact me and I’ll provide you the phone number for Sea-Tow and a rough estimate of how much it costs to get towed from out at sea. I’ll also provide you with estimates for these rentals from reputable partners that we work with and trust

  • Luggage Delivery Service

    I recently had a family charter a private jet and were between a light and mid-size jet as their options, with a few thousand dollar difference for the two. Unfortunately, with their luggage, they would be too heavy for the light jet and would need the mid-size jet. Because they used me as a travel advisor, I recommended another partner that provides door-to-door white-glove luggage delivery service to their final destination. Voila! Luggage is shipped, the family can fly on the light jet, and we literally saved them thousands of dollars. Who knew, right? Let me tell you, your travel advisor knows.

  • Cost Transparency

    Our partners specialize in either jet charters or boat charters and have been in the business for years. We don’t just work with companies you find off the internet or have a good enough rating on Trip Advisor. Before transferring a large amount of money to these companies in exchange for their services, it’s important to know factors such as where this deposit is held. Our yacht charter company holds the money in escrow until the service has been fulfilled, and only then will release it to the boat owner. A travel advisor ensures that you, the buyer, always has your investment protected.

A Note on Smarter and Safer Travel

To summarize these alternatives to standard summer travel, I want to be clear that each person is unique and has different feelings on our current situation. My experience since January 2020 has been that this situation is very fluid, oftentimes changing not just daily but by the hour. As travel professionals, we are keeping up on current state and international policies as well as the constantly changing policies of the travel industry around the world.

While recently planning a trip to The Resort at Paws Up in Montana this summer, a client reached out with concern because a friend told her that Montana enacted a 2 week quarantine. With one quick call to the resort (I have all our top partners’ sales managers on speed dial), I got back to her within 5 minutes with the actual written government ordinance, a statement from the resort, and their stringent resort guidelines to ease her worries. The truth is, there is a lot of misinformation out there, with headlines created as click-bait and rumors flying. Our job in the travel industry is to provide facts; and when there are none or things are uncertain, to clarify this and advise based on this uncertainty.

Everyone’s level of comfort is different right now, and I am not telling you to travel or to stay home. Each state is literally at a different phase, so it’s important to follow your own instincts and what feels right for you. My job as an advisor is to gauge your level of comfort and help you make your travel plans in a responsible way so that you travel at ease. Nobody wants to travel if the stress and anxiety outweigh the relaxing purpose of the trip. I hope I’ve provided you with viable options that will make you feel better about the future of travel, and if you’re not quite there yet, that’s okay. I will be here for you when you’re ready.


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5 ALTERNATIVES FOR YOUR SUMMER FAMILY VACATION

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