The last three years my focus has been as a Group and Cruise Specialist. My role as your Group Specialist/Planner is to educate you on the options available to you at different resorts: the costs, the inclusions, the extras, the private reception and dinner choices, the perks to Group travel and the subtle differences between cruise lines and ships as well as resorts and resort chains of hotels. I do this keeping your budget in mind and can secure travel quotes for you and your guests.
Once we determine your vacation choice and dates of travel, we then arrange the Travel Contract and Specific Group Arrangements. A minimum of 12 adults are needed to secure Group space. Once you have reviewed and accepted the details and the contract signed, we can add on guests by taking a deposit, which may or may not be refundable dependant on the cruise line or resort policy. All of these details become available once you choose the destination and travel date.
It is preferable that I have individual names and dates of birth as soon as possible, though in some circumstances, we can hold rooms for your group up to 60 days prior to departure, without them. At that time, I would need final names as they appear on their passports and would also need the full payments from them. Guests traveling as a Single can hold a single room then update to double if they find someone along the way to travel with. This enables them to hold the air seat and a room until such time as they want to change that. Single occupancy is always at a higher cost. This option is possible as long as the air space and hotel rooms are still available when they inquire.
There are special circumstances that might change that option but I would make you aware of any conditions prior to confirming the prices and details for you, so you can make an informed decision on which prices match your budget. There are circumstances when a hotel sells out prior to your departure date and they will sometimes ask the Travel Agent for a comprehensive rooming list and that can make it difficult for your Group to make any additional changes.
I would be the liaison between you and your guests for all of travel related questions and concerns they have. This is one of the benefits that if you are travelling with a large number of people, that you book as a group. It frees up your time from responding to everyone’s individual questions or special requests. The main reason that it is important that everyone book the accommodations at the resort together as a group, is that hotels will never bump individuals who are part of a group, but can and have, moved people around to different rooms on the resort property, and sometimes to another resort all together; that is entirely the resorts option, should they oversell their rooms, which has often occurred during ‘high season’ and there is nothing I can do for those that choose to book on their own.
Remember that there will always be “last minute” selloffs that can be an amazing deal. As long as you don’t mind where you go and have the flexibility, it is a perfect way to save some money. Just be aware that the last rooms to sell on a resort or on a cruise ship may be the least desirable ones, so you might not have the view you would have preferred or the best location in proximity to resort or ship amenities. Anything you see advertised online, I can access for your individual travel as well. It is generally harder to find last minute deals for larger numbers of people as the seats on the plane may be limited.
I pride myself on working very hard to make sure the details of your trip are covered so all you have to do is relax and enjoy your hard earned vacation time with friends and family. Please feel free to contact me and I will work around your personal home and work schedules; making myself available for your questions at nights and on weekends if that is what you need. Communication is so important to make sure that you have all the information you were looking for as well as all those things you didn’t even know you needed. Emailing me is a great way to provide a lot of written information and I respond as soon as I see it, even if it’s to tell you I will research the question and get back to you.