Some people make life-changing decisions quickly. Others take their time…
Suzy spent 10 years deciding whether to invest in a travel franchise, eventually joining us in 2021.
Despite the pandemic, she made some big bookings and in 2022 celebrated one of her largest yet – a £62k holiday for one of her repeat clients.
This month she’s also arranged trips worth £35k and £18k, and is aiming to sell £4 million of holidays in 2023.
“I wish I had done it sooner,” she says, explaining that, as a widower, she is the sole breadwinner for herself and her 13-year-old son Carter.
“When you start selling high-end trips the commission is good and this month my pay cheque is over £10k,” she says incredulous at the potential gains to be made.
“This year’s going to be really interesting. I spent last year finding my feet and getting to know travel brands, but now the harvest is coming in and I’m starting to reap what I’ve sown.”
Suzy worked in hospitality for 30 years and discovered The Travel Franchise over 10 years ago, keenly watching Not Just Travel grow to become a big name in the industry.
“I always wanted to work in travel,” she says, explaining that it’s not just about the money, that she wanted to be her own boss and manage her own time.
One of the best things she enjoys about the job, she says, is spending time organising and researching incredible hotels and holidays.
In fact, she says she doesn’t find working a chore as it’s pretty addictive – every inquiry is different.
“I have some really lovely clients who use me for what I”m trained for, including long-term planning – I work their holiday budget out for the year.
My largest £62k booking was for a couple’s 40th birthday in the Caribbean staying at the luxurious Jumby Bay, a private island off the coast of Antigua.”
“It’s great being able to book people to go on all the incredible trips that I would love to go on myself and be part of their journey.”
Suzy admits that she’s terrible at social media, but it hasn’t held her business back.
Her infectious energy and high level of customer service mean that she gets 95 per cent of her clients through repeat bookings and referrals.
“If you are passionate about what you do and give people good service there’s a natural snowball effect. One couple booked a Celebrity Cruise with me last year and before they’d got off the ship they told their friends who booked it too.”
Suzy says she’s there 24/7 if a client needs her.
And she loves trouble-solving, always quickly finding a solution to any problems if they occur, often supporting nervous clients who haven’t travelled abroad for some time due to Covid.
She also keeps a keen eye on trends, recently taking a trip to Almeria in Spain with her son to research affordable all-inclusive resorts for families keeping an eye on their budget during the cost-of-living crisis.
She books all sorts of holidays from our 450 operators and trade partners, from package holidays to cruises and luxury retreats, although she wants to focus more on wellness and holistic holidays in the future.
Suzy loves to travel and as an agent, she makes the most of subsidised trips abroad and has taken fam trips and educational.
She recently went on Not Just Travel’s Seminar at Sea, a week-long cruise on luxury cruise ship NCL Prima, with workshops led by experts who taught consultants how to sell more cruise holidays.
Suzy says that Not Just Travel’s training and support has been invaluable.
“The Business Development Managers have been brilliant throughout my journey,” she says explaining how they’ve taught her to find clients and increase her profit and helped her problem-solve during Covid.
“Every fear you could have imagined we faced, every problem you could have envisaged, we coped with. To start a business with bad days as a foundation is fantastic. I gathered so much knowledge.”
Suzy hopes that her son will eventually join her in the business (and definitely take charge of marketing on social media!).
But for now, she’s grateful that she can earn a good salary and enjoy her job, being her own boss and choosing her own hours.