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Why To Travel The World Using A Travel Advisor

So, you want to see the world. More so now than ever I would venture to guess. You’re not alone. Pretty much every survey I have seen regarding the public and traveling again has the same result – they are over quarantine and ready to hit the road again – with safety measures in place of course. Many are waiting until they get vaccinated, and some are waiting until their children are eligible to get vaccinated – but the resounding chorus is let’s start planning!

Now – you can go book your vacations, getaways, adventures, journeys – or whatever you like to label your trips – on your own. We all know that there are endless online travel sites and resources available at your fingertips. But and this is a big but – we also know what happened just about a year ago when travel was brought to a screeching halt – without any regard for those who were in the middle of their trips. From this unprecedented series of events emerged two vastly different tales.

On one hand there were the unfortunate accounts of not being able to get back home in any kind of reasonable time frame or without many detours and stressors at each turn, of numerous phone calls with ridiculously long wait times, of waiting months for refunds for lost days or entire trips that had to be cancelled or not getting refunds at all – and so on. The majority of these were from travelers that booked the trip on their own without the assistance of a travel advisor.

On the other hand, there were the feel-good stories of getting home with little to no delays and making just one phone call to do so with virtually no wait time, not having to fight for refunds or getting cancel penalties waived, not having to wait on hold – and so on. Know who booked those traveler’s trips? Bingo! Travel advisors.

As a travel advisor for the past decade, I have always known my worth in the trip planning process. And thanks to some amazing reviews from my clients, I can confidently say the part I play is met with much gratitude. And my friends I cannot tell you how happy that makes me. If you know Thia, you know my passion for travel. Getting to share that with others makes my heart happy. That being said, if you haven’t used a travel advisor in the past – and you were lucky enough not to be in one of the unfortunate accounts above – you may still be thinking you will do simply fine on your own. And I am not saying that you won’t by any means. But I would love to take this time to tell you why I don’t think you should travel the world without one.


We Are A Wealth of Knowledge

Photo by Andrew Stutesman on Unsplash

As travel advisors we have all studied our craft in one form or another. Some went to college to become a part of the hospitality industry. Some may have learned about travel from years of, well, traveling. However we became experts in our field – the point here is – we did indeed become experts in our field. And as with most professionals, we love to share our knowledge. And that knowledge can take you to places you never dreamed of – literally. Personally, my expertise comes from a lifetime of travels that started when I was a child and had the fabulous opportunity to accompany my parents on business trips. So much of what I know, I experienced firsthand. The rest is thanks to an insatiable hunger to devour everything I can about destinations across the globe through continuous education and training, supplier and partner webinars and affiliations with well-known and respected travel industry leaders.

We Know People

Photo by Bernie Almanzar on Unsplash

Travel advisors have access to discounts, sales, upgrades, perks, private tours and experiences and a host of other things to save you money or add value to your trip without adding to the cost. How? A few reasons really. This one has a lot of different moving parts to it. For me there is my status with certain hotel brands that allows me to access all of the above. Then there are my trusted contacts in each destination that range from tour operators to transfer companies to restaurateurs. They are literally my eyes and ears on the ground that I trust to check things out that perhaps I have not seen in a while or have yet to see, along with passing on great insider secrets that I can then pass on to you.

We Are Your Person

Photo by Karolina Grabowska from Pexels

Another benefit to using a travel advisor is that you have one contact person for every aspect of your trip. Need to change your seats on one of your flights? Your travel advisor can get them changed. Need to request feather free pillows in your room? Your travel advisor can request that. Need to change your morning spa treatment to an afternoon one? Your travel advisor can switch it. Want to book an extra excursion? Your travel advisor can book it. Need to … ok I’m pretty certain you get the idea. Traveling with Thia means you pretty much only have to have one number in your favorites – mine. I am your middleman, your go between, your personal concierge. I wait on hold, so you don’t have to. I get things done for you to ensure that you have nothing less than a fabulous vacation.

We Are There From Start To Finish

Know another great reason to travel the world via a travel advisor? They travel with you – from afar of course. Now, I cannot speak for all travel advisors but when you book with Thia you get Thia from the very beginning planning stages right through the entire trip until you return home. When you are travelling you can contact me 24/7 should the need arise. And when you call me – you get the same agent every time – me! – as opposed to a random agent in a call center. So, no need to stress or worry about explaining anything to me regarding your itinerary. I created it. I know it. I know who to contact. I know how to answer it, fix it, cancel or confirm it. I am here to make sure things go smoothly and take care of any unforeseen circumstances. Basically, all you have to do is sit back and enjoy the ride! So to speak.


In the interest of time and space – and quite possibly attention spans – I am going to stop at these four reasons – which are pretty much the top four that encompass the main value behind using a travel advisor to travel the world. Although there are many, many more and I am sure my brothers and sisters in the industry can each come up with additional reasons simply based on personal experiences of how they have assisted their customers.

With that being said, whether you need more convincing or you’re ready to let me take the reins, contact me today and let’s get to planning, and thus resuming, your travels around this marvelous world of ours!

Yours in travel,



An Interview With Thia

Note: This week’s blog is written by Carole Peck as Carole Peck. I approached Thia with a blog topic idea where I would interview her so that she could introduce herself to new clients and get reacquainted with existing clients. The video that I wrote this from can do more justice to Thia’s passion, charm, soulfulness and warm, inviting personality than my words could ever hope to achieve – although I did my best to try to convey the beauty that is Thia in the blog entry below. Enjoy!


This week I had the absolute pleasure of sitting down with Cynthia “Thia” Brounno to discuss a variety of topics including her decision to enter the travel industry, her favorite type of trip to plan, why she should be your go-to travel advisor and much more. As she was speaking, I found myself mesmerized by not only her words – but her tone, her gestures and most importantly her passion. And yes – I do mean passion for travel of course – but also her passion for people in general – from those she plans the trips of a lifetime for to the those who reside in the destinations her clients visit. For Thia it’s obviously not just about providing her clients with an amazing vacation – which that she certainly does – it’s also about making sure they come away from that vacation with a new appreciation for the destination, its culture and most importantly, its people.

Whether you have used Thia to curate your travel experience in the past or you are discovering her for the first time – I guarantee you are going to so enjoy her! And you’re definitely going to want her to put your next adventure together. That being said – here is a synopsis of – as well as my take aways from – what was for me, a super fun and inspiring interview.

Question #1 – Let’s get right to it – how long have you been in travel and what led to your decision to take on the role of travel advisor?

Image by Pam Patterson from Pixabay 

Listening to Thia discuss how she got into travel leaves one with no doubt that it was a path she was meant to follow. One of the youngest of six – the second to the youngest to be exact – she got the opportunity to travel and see much of the world due to the line of work her parents were in. She explained that they pretty much divided up the trips so that everyone got the chance to go – so perhaps the three oldest would go on one, then the three youngest on the next one and so on. Although she did jokingly admit she got to go on a lot of them when maybe it wasn’t her turn, because being the second to the youngest baby in the family, all she had to do was cry. Which you know was probably a foreshadowing of what her future career path would take. The fact she always wanted to be included in those journeys speaks volumes. Her life from an early age was consumed by travel and for the past decade she has been installing her love for it in others. For Thia, travel is a lifestyle – not a career – and it has always been that way – long before Thia’s Travel Services opened its doors ten years ago.

Question #2 – What is the most important piece of information you need to get from your clients before you start researching their vacations?

Image by Arek Socha from Pixabay 

Thia’s answer to this was spot on and that answer was:  What is the reasoning for you going on this trip? Why are you travelling? The need for this knowledge prior to starting the actual planning process is due to the fact that people travel for so much more than just that yearly vacation to get away from the real world for some rest and relaxation. Although that is one of the reasons and a very popular, and dare I say, much needed one for most of us. But they also travel for a myriad of other reasons. Some travel for medical purposes. Some travel for business and then turn those trips into what is referred to as bleisure trips – mixing in some personal travel before, during or after the business part. Some travel for family reunions, destination weddings or vow renewal ceremonies. Yes, I could go on and on as the reasons one plans a trip are endless and individualized to each and every client that reaches out to her. For Thia – knowing the ultimate reason behind the journey for that person – or the end result they are hoping to get out of the journey – is the key to making it a success.

Question #3 – What is your favorite type of trip to plan?

Photo by Asad Photo Maldives from Pexels

So, confession time here. In the interview I actually misread my notes and asked her what her all-time favorite trip or itinerary was that she had put together for a client. However, my intention was to ask the subtitle of this section – what is your favorite type of trip to plan. But almost as if she were reading my mind, she redirected the question and asked if she could generalize that answer – which is what I was going for anyway. (Clearly, we make a great team.) Her response was that she loves, loves, loves planning family trips. And you know, the way that she explained how she goes about it is a great indication of the kind of deep, personal thought she is going to put into your trip. She explained first that she thinks about the children and what excited her at that age and what she wanted to do. She literally puts herself into the equation – drawing on how she learned to travel and how to appreciate people, land and culture. She also always requests to speak with the children one on one and loves taking that time to talk with them to see exactly what their interests are to help her plan an itinerary that is going to be as wonderful for them as it is for their parents and / or grandparents. With a thought process like that its no wonder that Thia has so many satisfied clients of all ages.

Question #4 – Where is one place that you think everyone should have the opportunity to visit at least once in their lifetime?

Photo by 2Photo Pots on Unsplash

Thia was quick to ask if she could have two answers for this particular question – which of course I agreed to. Her first choice was so passionately expressed that it gave me chills and cemented the fact that Africa should be on my bucket list. And not just one place in Africa – as she enthusiastically explained – the entire continent is phenomenal – north, east, south and west and everywhere in-between.  Her excitement about the culture and the warmth of the people came across oh so powerfully as she gushed that this is one continent that is not to be missed by anyone who has the opportunity to travel.

The second destination which definitely surprised me is the good old USA.  And she noted – which I totally and completely agree with – that we tend to take the United States for granted because we live here. To further her point, she went on to say that just because we live in the same country – what I see and experience here in the northeast from landscape to traditions to weather, for instance, is completely different from say someone who lives in California. Which are just two of 50 amazing and unique states at our disposal. Not to mention the different cities and towns in each. And Thia noted that one of the positives that came out of the pandemic was the fact that she was forced to stop traveling internationally and that gave her the chance to start exploring her own back yard – for which she is oh so grateful.

Question #5 – What do you want people to know about Thia? Why should people come to Thia to get their adventures curated.

Ok, full disclosure here.  How she started out answering this one floored me. I have been working with Thia for about four months now and had no idea, but this woman speaks eight different languages! Yup – eight – including English, of course, along with four Nigerian languages, German, French and she’s currently in the process of learning Spanish. So, as she ever so eloquently stated – “Thia understands you when no one else does.” I just love that!

Her second reason was a quite powerful and once again personal one. Thia explained that she understands the need to get away, to experience the world around us, to refresh and rejuvenate – even if you are working to make that happen on a limited budget. She has firsthand experience with budgeting getaways into your finances, as she has been a single mother for quite some time. And she is more than willing to help you work towards the perfect vacation with what you can afford. And you can tell she not only sincerely means that, but that she will do everything in her power to make it happen for you.

Her third point was that she does not just plan a vacation – she goes on vacation with you.

Meaning that she doesn’t just book your vacation and run so to speak. She charges a retainer – which most advisors do now – and may I say rightly so. Part of that fee is that she is with you before, during and after your trip. She will be accessible to you the entire time she is planning it, while you are there and when you are on your way back. When you call Thia’s Travel Services – the person who booked your flights, hotel, transfers, tours, etc. – that is the same person who is answering the phone. Which means she knows how to answer your questions or where to get the answers quickly if she doesn’t have them. Personalized service in this day and age is so incredibly important. And when you use a small, local business you get that personalized service. Just ask those who were traveling or about to travel when the lock down occurred last March. I guarantee you will get two completely different stories of how those trips ended up from those who booked on their own as opposed to those who used a travel advisor. Travel advisors like Thia are worth every penny. I promise.


While that concluded my questions – Thia took the opportunity to end our interview with one oh so touching and inspirational thought (or perhaps mantra is a better term) – “the journey itself is my home.”  She passionately implored that whenever you go on a trip to make that journey your home. In other words – don’t compare where you are from with where you are. Enjoy that journey – make it a place where you can embrace, appreciate and admire the people and the land for just what they are and in the simplest form. Oh, my heart.

See what I mean? What a joy it was to speak to this woman. If you haven’t watched the interview yet please do, as I know if you have not fallen in love with her from this overview, you will after seeing her speak so eloquently about travel and her passion for all it has to offer us. In her words – she is not just a travel expert – she is a travel enthusiast. Do yourself a favor and contact Thia when you are ready to book your next travel adventure. You won’t regret it.



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