Want to travel and have the flexibility to work at the same time, wherever you are in the world?
That’s one of the biggest reasons why former RAF crewman, Chris, loves his new job as a travel consultant.
As his partner lives in Berlin, he divides his time between the UK and Germany, while also satisfying his wanderlust by globetrotting.
“I’ve been to over 103 countries and running out of new places to visit,” jokes Chris, who has a passion for off-grid adventure travel.
“There aren’t many places on the planet that I haven’t been to.
“The flexibility of the job is a huge factor for me,” he adds, explaining that joining The Travel Franchise on our most affordable Lite option enabled him to change career, even though he had never worked in the travel industry before.
Chris, who served in the Air Force for over 12 years as a helicopter crewman after training alongside Prince William, has had a colourful life flying in the back of Chinook helicopters.
With a sobering perspective on life, he made the most of every period of time off during his military career to travel.
And it’s no surprise that he has had a few tales to tell about his offbeat travel explorations and how to get out of tricky situations – a skill that should put any globetrotting customer at ease.
“I’ve had to pay a fisherman to smuggle me off an island off the east coast of Africa when flights were grounded…
“I’ve also driven a .9 litre car from the UK to Mongolia with a cuddly toy elephant on the roof (a nod to his squadron’s emblem),” he says nonchalantly.
Although the holidays he organises for clients tend to be less intrepid, he loves curating trips rather than using off-the-shelf solutions.
“The standard sunny higher-end holidays are inspirational and easy, but I like the challenge of putting something a little more complex together,” says Chris, who has a passion for Africa and safaris.
One of his recent £20k bookings was for a two-centre safari in Tanzania followed by a beach break in the Maldives. Although there are no direct flights between the two, Chris found a solution.
Chris also knows New Zealand well having worked there alongside the country’s air force.
For Chris, bookings really began to take off when he began working full time and upgraded to our Elite package.
Increasing his presence on social media has helped grow business, as has networking.
“I met one client at an event in London. She wanted to get married in Jamaica and sent all her guests to me.”
He has also begun to sell cruise after he attended NJT’s Seminar at Sea, a week-long cruise onboard NCL Prima with workshops on how to sell cruise.
“I’ve travelled the world but I had never been on a cruise ship. It was a great opportunity, I loved it.
“I created a low-cost advert on Facebook and got my first cruise booking.”
So what does Chris plan in the future?
“I’m really happy with the increase in sales – I’ve seen my business grow 300% year-on-year from January 2022 to January 2023 – and want to plan more creative trips.
“Eventually I might become an adventure tour operator and become one of NJT’s suppliers creating the trips I want to do myself. I’d also love to live in Africa.”
And Chris could…
As the boss of his business he can choose his own hours and work anywhere in the world.
A dream combination and far less stressful than flying around in Chinooks.