Susan Moynihan spent the last 15 years traveling on an average of once a month, scouting worldwide destinations and hotels.
But, for most of that time, it wasn’t as an advisor.
Instead, Moynihan’s travel career started as a travel editor. Her first travel piece on ranch vacations in Wyoming for Women’s Day landed her a position with Condé Nast’s Modern Bride and Elegant Bride that she leveraged into an editor-in-chief role for Bonnier’s Destination Weddings & Honeymoons.
“I went to Virtuoso Difference in August 2013, considering a career switch,” she says. “I had concerns about leaving one changing industry for another, but after meeting other successful advisors at Virtuoso, I decided to give it a go.”
And it was a decision that would pay off … literally. Shortly after joining Largay Travel in 2013, she hit the $1,000,0000 mark in annual revenue.
“That was huge for me,” she says. “It had been a private goal, but I’m terribly hard on myself and I didn’t really think I could do it. But hitting and surpassing that goal affirms that I chose the right path, career-wise.”
Now in her third year with the agency, Moynihan says Largay Travel is the right environment for her to learn the selling side of travel.
“Largay has allowed me to learn at my own pace, which is key,” she says. “My travel background is extensive, but it comes from the media side of the industry, so I needed to learn about selling. I’m grateful that I can call up any number of people, including owner Paul Largay and president Amanda Klimak, for help or advice whenever I need it. There isn’t any ego or attitude at Largay; we all share the same goal of success, and it really feels like a team.”
Perhaps Moynihan’s proudest achievements as an advisor have been the developing of Largay Travel’s mentoring program and officially launching “The Honeymoonist” in 2014.
“I started The Honeymoonist focusing on high-end honeymoons — a natural fit for my wedding background,” she says. “My clients go big for their honeymoons, and they want something unique, from destinations like Sri Lanka or Myanmar to over-the-top suites with all the frills. But that’s only 50 percent of my business. My private-jet clients allow me to get really creative; instead of just visiting Buckingham Palace, we’ll do tea in a private residence of Windsor Castle, with a member of the royal family. Or we’ll do multiple villas for a group of friends, with elaborate welcome dinners and surprise outings.”
So what are her favorite trips to book?
“I love special-occasion travel, those trips that have an emotional component and need extra care and attention,” she tells Luxury Travel Advisor. “And I love working with event planners, who are sticklers for detail as I am. No matter what, I base recommendations on my own experience and taste, and tell clients that upfront. I won’t send someone to a resort that I don’t think is up to snuff, and I have no problem losing a potential lead if I don’t think it’s the right kind of client for me.”