“Imagination, creativity and love of the unique paired with thorough research, attention to detail and documentation is key to extraordinary journeys,” Jennifer Anderson of Classic Travel Service tells Luxury Travel Advisor.
These are wise words from someone who has been selling travel for only two years. Perhaps it’s why her revenue for 2018 is $500,000.
Ultimately, Anderson looks to make travel as stress-free as possible for her clients. She also likes to encourage them to step outside of their comfort zone and experience something new. She bases this off her own experience. “Some of my favorite travel memories are of days that I did something that made my heart race and adrenaline pump,” she says.
A suggestion for clients looking for something new: Pacuare Lodge in Costa Rica. Anderson recently returned from the property, where guests arrive and depart via whitewater raft, “so the adventure begins before you even reach the lodge!” A Bonus: While she was there, Anderson says she was able to visit one of the few remaining indigenous communities deep in the rainforest. “It was an incredible experience,” she tells us.
Next up on her travels is Barcelona. There, she will be staying at the brand-new Barcelona Edition, and will be scouting out new properties, tours, guides and restaurants for her clients. In other words, important research for a city that’s as popular as it’s ever been and insider access is at a premium.
Anderson’s clients are primarily leisure travelers; they are couples, families and multigenerational groups. She tells us they are also “increasingly interested in travel that extends beyond the destination, including those looking for resorts focused on sustainability and conservation.” Among the requests from her clients? One asked for assurance that the animals at an elephant sanctuary in Thailand are actually treated properly and not ridden; another asked about what supplies they could bring with them to donate to local communities.
In addition to planning current trips, Anderson says she likes to look toward the horizon, putting a focus on a client’s long-term plans. “If they have young children, we discuss what they would like their children to experience and when the best ages to take them would be,” she says.
Anderson tells us that referrals are the best way to grow her business; however, she notes that she also uses social media and blogging “to inspire, differentiate [herself] and begin the conversation” with potential clients.
Regarding her agency, Classic Travel, Anderson says she loves its “entrepreneurial spirit.” While there is a collaborative atmosphere — “we are constantly bouncing ideas off each other and sharing client feedback” — Anderson isn’t restricted to certain hotels or tour operators. She also credits Classic’s integrated booking engine for making her a star: “I find it extremely useful in research and booking my clients,” she adds.