Client relationships are where Shelley Luskey of Los Gatos Travel excels. She is always sure to give a little bit more than expected. Luskey says, “I go the extra mile with dinner and tour reservations and gifts relevant to the particular itinerary. FITs are a specialty of mine. I prepare a bound booklet for each of my FIT clients with everything about their trip.”
The Luxury Travel Advisor Trendsetter was fostering her ability to disseminate information prior to working in travel. Luskey started out as a schoolteacher, giving her the tools to educate her clients on destinations. She is also a natural salesperson, having been involved in the wholesale fashion industry for many years.
Luskey says her clients are educated, professional, adventurous and curious. She sells high-end leisure — a lot of Europe, cruises and river cruises. Mexico and Hawaii, booked via the tour company Journese, are also on her radar. She says her skillset is diverse, adding, “I feel confident selling most areas but I am also a very good researcher and know which experts to rely on.”
Los Gatos’ relationships with several hotel brands and individual hoteliers is also key, Luskey tells us. She adds, “the cruise line reps are great partners for us, as well as many tour companies. We offer a value that clients can never get online … like upgrades, help with problems and travel expertise, often while saving them money. All this adds up to amazing experiences for clients using our agency!”
The owners of Los Gatos Travel encourage its advisors to experience hotels, cruises and tour operations in as many cities as possible. Luskey is no exception. Her last big trip was on a Crystal cruise to the Baltic. Her next group trip will take 24 to Europe in May. In between, she will have visited Hawaii, Miami, Austin, Santa Barbara, Savannah, Stockholm, London, New York and Kansas City.
Even when Luskey battled breast cancer, it did not stop her from caring for her clients. In fact, those around her were therapeutic in a way. Luskey says, “Being at the office with all their support kept me stable, kept my mind off of the bad things and got me through a difficult time.”
Luskey says her coworkers are not only supportive of her but of clients, as well. She notes, “Los Gatos Travel is a great group of knowledgeable, professional, charming women. We have a great partnership with hotels, airlines and tour operators that give our clients a real value and appreciation about using a travel advisor.”
When Luskey is not working as a travel advisor, she is playing Mahjong or canasta, reading, going to plays and musicals and spending time with family and friends.