‘Rocky’, one of the most famous movie franchises starring Sylvester Stallone, has an impressive fan base. As a die-hard Rocky fan himself, Sean came up with the idea during lockdown: Why not create the ultimate trip for other fans out there? From transfers to flights, hotels, tours, and the famous restaurant.
Sean Wallage started his travel agency in 2019, in partnership with Mike Johnson after 17 years of friendship. Sean’s been to Philadelphia 4 times already and visited the Rocky film sets. It all started from a Facebook group dedicated to ‘Rocky fans’, which one of his friends created called ‘Rocky Balboa Going The Distance’.
It’s the most unbelievable story. It all starts with my good friend Marco A Naylor, the creator of the biggest ‘Rocky fan base’ Facebook group, which I’m a part of.
Facebook wanted to showcase unique Facebook groups that bring people together through shared interests and experiences, and they got in touch with Marco.
It was hard to believe when they contacted him. It was part of Facebook’s “More Together” campaign.
Facebook wanted to fly us fans out for the ‘Rocky steps’. The creator of the group couldn’t go, but some of our biggest fans from the Facebook group were up for it.
We still thought it was a joke when the fans boarded the flight. We just couldn’t believe it.’
But it was all real. These die-hard fans were flown into the U.S by Facebook, all expenses paid, and Sylvester Stallone even turned up. They were given merchandise and full VIP treatment.
It didn’t stop there. At the Superbowl in February 2020, Marco’s Facebook group got a free advert and endorsement.
Shortly after, I had this vision to help Rocky fans based in the UK to get out to Philadelphia, to go on the Rocky tour, to see the movie sets, and be immersed in Rocky paradise.
There is a famous tour out there called, ‘The Yo, Philly! Rocky Film Tour’. It’s ranked no. 1 on TripAdvisor. A guy called Mike Kunda runs it, he is an impersonator and great fun.
I got a leaflet made up with the ultimate ‘Rocky’ package. I created it myself: Flights, accommodation, transfers, the Rocky tour, the famous Italian restaurant which features in the film. Everything any Rocky fan would want!
There have been 12 people booked on the package so far, but we expect many more to book in 2021. There is a wide range of ages in the group. The youngest is 24 and the oldest is 65! They are due to fly on the 31st of May 2021.’
Born from an idea during a pandemic, the ‘Rocky holiday package’ was a knock-out. Sean will be joining the group as a tour guide to deliver a ‘wow’ experience from start to finish. It’s also the perfect chance to enjoy some well-deserved time off.
Sean worked for many years in the entertainment industry, prior to starting a travel business. He’s now marrying his existing knowledge and experience of entertainment with his travel business. This shows the creative ways travel agents can help people’s dreams come true.