Diana Thompson of Diana’s Dream Vacations

The Agent’s Corner: Love and Respect

The love of travel motivated me to get into the industry.

As a young child, I was treated to travel within the US. After high school, I took a trip to the Caribbean. It was my first trip out of the country. I planned it for some friends and me.

Planning and experiencing the trip, and seeing the satisfaction on the faces of my friends, prompted me to continue planning vacations for family and friends.

I attribute my (industry) success to several things:

—I surround myself with others who have been in the business longer than I have. I like to ask them questions because they likely have the information or a contact that I can use.

—I have joined several travel organizations, which provides peer support, and attend travel and trade shows to get as much information as I can about products and destinations.

—I travel as much as I can. The best way to get information about a destination is to see it firsthand. I am careful to document the trip in as much detail as possible with photos, my personal notes and brochures.

—With the relaunch of my website, I will be offering a trip giveaway that I received while attending TASK; this will help to generate leads. Also, through TASK I have access to “specials” to various destinations that will be available to clients. The website will also offer a blog spot which will also be featured in my social media sites.

—Because I treat my clients with respect, I get referrals from them as well as repeat business.

I was told when I first opened my business: Be sure to treat your customers with respect. If you do they will tell others about you, and they will keep coming back.

This is the best job you will ever love. Surround yourself with knowledgeable people; learn all you can about the industry and the destinations you love so you can provide your clients with the best vacations that they deserve. Stay current in your learning; You can never know everything!

– Diana Thompson (IATA, CCRA, NACTA, PTANA, and PATA), Diana’s Dream Vacations, LLC, Boston, Massachusetts.

Experience: 4 years

Education: TASK Live, Recommend, Travel Agent Academy, Travel Agent University