Posted May 12, 2020
This Expanding Travel Business Focuses on Life Events, not Destinations
The owners of a travel business saw their colleagues in the industry barely making it, and their own spreadsheets were getting worse. No one had planned for a pandemic. The managers of one business, Authentic Vacations, quickly regrouped. They gathered a creative team that was willing to work long hours with reduced pay for the excitement and the challenge. Their goal was to put together a new industry model. Today, that new model, Authentic America, was launched.
The President, Allegra Lynch, said, “We asked a lot of questions, and the answer that kept coming up was simple: People travel to celebrate milestone moments. We thought of the milestones in our own lives. Cancer free; the divorce is final; celebrating a dark skies experience.” She picked up a photo from her desk. “This is one of my moments—deciding to go away with friends who feel like family.”
“We flipped the coin. Instead of being destination oriented, we are life-event oriented. Tell us what’s coming up with your life first, and then let’s find the perfect destination.” (Their first destinations are the Southwest, Alaska, Wine Country, New England, the Rocky Mountains, and the Pacific Northwest.) “We’ve lost sight of the amazing things we can do right here, at home, and the time to explore America’s endless possibilities is now.”
Sending out surveys, they discovered that travelers are longing for adventures of all kinds. Mountains inspire us. Hiking trails on a shaded path invite us into a world of trees, streams, and eagles. Red rock deserts blaze their sunsets across the sky, and coastlines tease us with charming towns and vineyards. Sacred spots of wellness welcome us. “The pulse of America beats with culture and creativity,” Lynch says, “and all are waiting to be discovered.”
Authentic Vacations has arranged over 200,000 trips and is a trusted member of USTOA, IATA, ASTA, and Travel Leaders. Lynch is buoyed by the present challenge.