MAC Chat: An interview with Thorunn Reynisdottir, Fly International

by Sheona 7/14/2010 5:43:00 AM

A series of 5 minute interviews featuring travel industry leaders. 



This week's MAC Chat features our interview with Thorunn Reynisdottir, President of Fly International. 

For more information go to

For those agents who are not familiar with Fly International, can you
please tell us about your company?
For over 50 years, Fly International's parent company Auto Europe has been a
leader in worldwide car rental services. In recent years, we have expanded
our services to include over 4,000 car rental locations worldwide; scheduled
air from the USA to Europe; over 30,000 three, four and five star European
hotels; chauffeur and transfer services; prestige and sports car rentals;
mobile phone and GPS rentals.

Our philosophy is, 'If you think that there is something more important than
a client...then you need to think again.'

Fly International strives to provide our customers with competitive rates
and the best service available anywhere. At Fly International we do not
believe that customers should expect less because they pay less. Our rates
are always competitive, but we never forget that we are in the service
business. If you have never used our services before, give us a try.

Can you share with us what benefits agents can expect by working with Fly
Ticket cost prints as bulk
Commissionable published fares
No credit card fee's
Up to 12% commission
Low change/cancel fee's
Discount last minute fares
One way and open jaws
Package with land components
Seat assignment on selected carriers

Share with us a little about your Group Program.
Please click here.

Can you tell us about Fly International's Affiliate Program?
Worldwide Car Rental Services
Scheduled Air from the USA to Europe and Beyond
Over 15,000 3, 4 and 5 star hotels
Prestige and Sports Car Rentals
Chauffeur Drive and Transfer Service
European and South Pacific Motorhome Rentals
European Cellular Phone Rentals
Referral commission earned with every reservation.
Added value and content to your website
Worldwide Car Rental Services
For more info, see our Partnerships Reward page

A referral commission will be earned with every reservation that is booked by a visitor from your site.

A unique ID number will be assigned to your affiliate site and will be embedded in all e-mail requests for rates and reservations, identifying your organization.

Payment & Reporting:
Reports and Payments will be negotiated on an individual basis.

Getting Started:
To activate your online partnership, simply complete our on-line affiliate
form. You may select any or all of our products and services that are of an
interest to your website visitors. Go to affiliate form.

Do you offer any incentives?
Please click here to view our incentive reward program.

Tell us about one of your favorite destinations that Fly International
caters to.
Hard to select one destination, so I am mentioning several of our
destinations, see below:

Italy is one of our favorite destinations; Rome, Milan, Florence, Venice,
all great places to go and see. There is also Asia, many places there
for example: Tokyo, Hong Kong, Bangkok, Beijing, and Singapore.

Thank you Thorunn for that great interview!


MAC Chat: An interview with Mark Carlson, Star Clippers

by Sheona 6/15/2010 5:23:00 AM

A series of 5 minute interviews featuring travel industry leaders. 



This week's MAC Chat features our interview with Mark Carlson, Director of Marketing for Star Clippers. 

For more information:

What makes your cruise line unique from others?
Star Clippers is a cruise line that operates a fleet of authentic tall ships. The unique four- and five-masted vessels boast wide-open decks and the thrill of cruising under sail. Yet the ships have all of the modern luxuries travelers have come to expect. 

The size of the ships — they carry just 227 or 170 passengers — enables them to call at lesser-visited ports and exclusive harbors that the larger ships can’t visit, allowing guests to become totally immersed in the regions we explore.

Water sports also play a big part in our experience. With plenty of water time on many of our itineraries, guests can take advantage of complimentary water sports directly from the ships’ aft marina – including snorkeling, water skiing and wind surfing; and Star Clippers also offers scuba instruction. 

On our ocean crossings, Star Clippers even allows guests to go for a swim in the middle of the ocean, weather permitting, of course!

What destinations do you visit?
Our itineraries are extremely diverse. There’s something for everyone, from tropical to historical to nature infused. 

In the summer, all three ships explore the eastern and western Mediterranean, calling at ports in Italy, Greece, Montenegro, Croatia, Spain, Morocco, France and Turkey, to name a few.

Come winter, Star Clipper and Royal Clipper cruise the Caribbean, while Star Flyer heads to Costa Rica, Panama and Nicaragua.

We also offer grand ocean crossings that are about more than simply getting from here to there — they are journeys that allow guests to experience the thrill of traversing an ocean under sail, to look out onto the horizon and see nothing but a blue backdrop behind the billowing sails. 

What should clients expect to experience on your ships?
A Start Clippers cruise is like taking a vacation on your own, private mega-yacht — with 170 or 227 of your closest friends. On board, guests dress in resort-casual attire and dine in a single, open seating. And passengers are exposed to an authentic clipper ship experience, whether they enjoy the bowsprit net suspended over the sea, attend a knot-tying class, help raise and lower the sails or climb the mast for a panoramic view.

Staterooms are elegantly appointed, with all the amenities one has come to expect from a fine resort. The decor is tastefully traditional. Guests will find the accouterments of a luxurious classic yacht. Burnished brass fittings and mahogany brightwork recall our nautical heritage. Soft natural fabrics reflect the colors of the sun, sea and sky. Prints of famous clipper ships and sailing yachts grace the walls.

Most days guests can be found lounging on our expansive teak decks with swimming pools and plenty of space to relax and read a good book.

What are your key selling features?
Authentic sailing adventure. 
Just 170 or 227 pampered guests. 
All the modern amenities of a private mega-yacht. 
International cuisine complemented by fine wines. 
Dine with whomever and whenever you want. 
Casual, relaxed ambience – no need to dress up. 
Off the beaten path ports of call. 
Sail in full harmony with the environment. 
No crowds or long lines. 
Full range of water sports. 

Who are the best target customers for travel agents?
Passengers who love to sail or who are looking for adventure. Passengers looking for an intimate experience. We offer a unique vacation, from the type of ships we operate to the intimate mature of our line. Also, travelers who are social. We do not have a casino or show lounge on our ships. The evening entertainment may consist of local performers coming on board or music from our on-board musician, but most of the time our guests socialize with each other in the Tropical Bar in the evening. Our guests are extremely friendly and by the end of the voyage everyone knows each other.

Thank you Mark for that great interview!





MAC Chat: An interview with Nicholas Filippidis, Louis Cruises

by Sheona 5/5/2010 6:41:00 AM

A series of 5 minute interviews featuring travel industry leaders. 



This week's MAC Chat features our interview with Nicholas Filippidis, Director of of Product Developement in North America for Louis Cruises. 

For more information:

What will clients experience on your cruises?
On board our small to mid-sized cruise ships, travelers will find a casual and friendly atmosphere, warm Greek hospitality and very attentive service. Louis Cruises offers a destination focused range of itineraries that maximizes a traveler’s time in each seaside village, town, or port city visited with plenty of time on land to explore fashionable ports of call, diverse cultures, historical sites, and interact with friendly, vibrant and hospitable local residents. Our guests can expect timely arrivals, flexible and unique itineraries, smooth embarkation and disembarkation procedures and fascinating shore excursions. 

Louis Cruises provides a complete destination experience coupled with a relaxed, casual, and comfortably stylish setting on-board for an outstanding trip each and every time. Exploring the Western Mediterranean onboard our vessels offers you with the convenience of no packing and unpacking; no checking in and out of hotels; and no traffic jams to deal with – just exquisite travel memories to enjoy. At each port, you can choose to join in the planned shore excursions or explore on your own. With excellent tour guides and plenty of free time to wander, you will be enveloped in the charm of each place you visit. 

What are the unique/key selling features of Louis Cruises?
-- Best selection of 3-, 4- and 7-night itineraries in the Greek Islands and Turkey sailing from Piraeus and departure date options
-- Most port intensive itineraries in the Mediterranean
-- Very comfortable medium sized cruise ships that best deliver small island ports with excellent service, good food and lively entertainment
-- High value fare structure – Eastern Mediterranean programs are sold through most major tour operators as air/land and cruise vacations
-- Highly regarded Greek Hospitality and welcoming, service-oriented officers and crew
-- Minimal at-sea days (on many programs there are no full days at sea) – Louis Cruises programs are created specifically so that most days include at least one port of call and features most of the sailing time at night so that travelers can enjoy the very most time in each port-of-call visited.
-- Diverse range of shore excursions led by insightful and knowledgeable guides, again to further enhance the traveler experience and offer a more in-depth look into each seaside town, village, or city visited
--Flexibility of itineraries so they can be in a way customized to fit tour operator’s overall tour program or a traveler’s desired itinerary – For example on select programs in the Western Mediterranean passengers have the option of embarkation in Genoa or Marseilles. On select programs in the Eastern Mediterranean passengers have the option of embarkation in Piraeus and Mykonos, Greece or Istanbul and Kusadasi, Turkey. Disembarkation is also possible in Kusadasi, Turkey or in Santorini, Greece
-- Greek Island hopping options are available combining extensive stays in Mykonos and Santorini
-- 7-Night Roundtrip sailings from Piraeus from mid March to mid November on board the m/v CRISTAL
-- 4-Night Greek Island and Turkey cruises depart from Piraeus on Fridays and 5-night cruises on Mondays on board the m/v AQUAMARINE 
-- Customized shore excursion design upon request
-- Pre-purchase of shore excursions available through tour operators

Who are the best target customers for travel agents?
--50+% of our guests in the Eastern Mediterranean (Aegean - Greek Islands and Turkey cruise itineraries) are active, affluent and well educated travelers from North America.

--Research reveals that our passengers generally earn higher than median family income and have an appreciation for a more intimate and casual country-club atmosphere of smaller more intimate vessels. 

--Signature expectations…Our guests know they will enjoy timely arrivals, flexible and unique itineraries, smooth embarkation and disembarkation procedures and fascinating shore excursions. Our travelers choose to enjoy much of their time on land exploring: ancient sites; villages, cities and towns with rich history and cultural allure, and some of the world’s most fascinating and fashionable ports of call – all while interacting with friendly, vibrant and hospitable local residents.

--While the majority of our passengers are seasoned travelers and have sailed on larger cruise ships, Louis Cruise Lines is also ideal for first time cruisers that may experience the Greek Islands as an extension to their comprehensive air/land tour package of Athens and the classical sites of mainland Greece. 

What destinations do you currently sail to?
Louis Cruises takes travelers to the most celebrated destinations in the Mediterranean! Together we touch the sun-kissed simplicity of the Aegean islands, amazing Turkey, the unparalleled elegance of the French Riviera, the cosmopolitan bustle of the Mediterranean islands, the eternal spring of Madeira and the Canary Islands, the lively pulse of Spanish port cities, the intricate mystery of North Africa’s medina citadels, spectacular Italy and the most popular countries of the Middle East. 

Are you offering any specials or have any current promotions you would like to share with us?
Louis Cruises presents outstanding deals on Western Mediterranean cruises featuring savings of up to 50 percent off brochure rates. Called SMART RATES, these special deals invite travelers to book early to get the lowest prices. These SMART RATES include: onboard Louis Majesty – 7-night Mediterranean Highlights from $710 (down from of $1440), 8-night Spanish Odyssey & Tangier from $790 (down from $1600), and 9-night Italy, Greece, Ionian Islands & Albania from $850 (down from $1670); onboard Orient Queen – 11-night Adriatic Coast, Italy and the Ionian from $1065 (down from $1955); and onboard Louis Cruises’ Coral – 11-night Corinth Canal, Greek Islands, Istanbul from $1000 (down from $1885). These SMART RATES are based on per person, double occupancy and are valid for May-October 2010 departures. SMART RATES are commissionable to travel agents. To access SMART RATES for the company’s Western Mediterranean cruise programs and book the above detailed programs register online at

How can we book with Louis Cruises?
Louis Cruises’ itineraries can be booked through most major tour operators in the U.S. and Canada. For cruise programs in the Western Mediterranean, travel agents can also register online at to access SMART RATES and book these itineraries online. For further information, to receive a list of tour operators selling Louis Cruises programs, or to order the company’s brochure, call (877) LouisUS or (877) 568-4787, send an e-mail to or visit the company’s web site at:


Thank you Nicholas for that great interview!





MAC Chat: An interview with Elena Muñoz, Confortel Hoteles

by Sheona 4/29/2010 9:18:00 AM

A series of 5 minute interviews featuring travel industry leaders. 

Sponsored by: 


This week's  MAC Chat features our interview with Elena Munoz, eCommerce and Distribution Manager for Confortel Hoteles, Barcelona SP.


For more information visit:

The What makes Confortel Hotels distinct from other hotels?
At Confortel Hoteles we are specialist in making your stay a unique experience. Find our hotels in the most attractive locations of the city. We offer an excellent service designed for you. You can enjoy free WiFi for work, for fun or for anything you may need.

How far are the hotels from the tourist sites?
Feel like a movie star at Confortel Almirante, it is just a few steps away from Woody Allen’s film "Vicky, Cristina and Barcelona" locations. The cathedral is also a few steps away from us, right in the heart of the Gothic Quarter.

If you are looking for a hotel near the beach, choose Confortel Barcelona, located in the Olympic village where athletes were housed during the Olympics in 1992 where a total of 32 Olympic and 73 world records were broken.

At Confortel Bel Art you will find a place to relax and enjoy art. Exhibitions of contemporary artists are often held in our hotel. We are near to Gaudi's (the greatest exponent of Catalan modernist architecture) masterpiece the “Sagrada Familia”.

Confortel Auditori is situated next to the Ciudadela Park, the perfect place to experience nature and environment. Also, do not do not forget to complete the experience by walking to the Zoo; it is just 5 minutes away!

Are your hotels locally owned and operated?
Confortel Hoteles is a hotel chain owned by the ONCE Business Corporation; it was founded 17 years ago and currently manages 18 hotels. Most of them are four stars and distributed by the Peninsula and the Balearics. 

Confortel has always intended to be a highly competitive company in terms of facility upgrades in the range of the "four star" and is committed to offer a comprehensive, individualized and high quality service to all customers. 

Do you have any current promotions you would like to share with the Travel Agents?
Absolutely! For a limited time we have our promotion Great Rate and Value at all Confortel Hoteles which includes: Free WiFi, Taxes and 15% Commission. *Good through July 7, 2010

How can a Travel Agent book Confortel Hoteles? 
In GDS using our codes as follows:

Confortel Almirante
Amadeus: BCNCAL, Galileo: 28, 
Sabre: 20191, WorldSpan: BCNGA

Confortel Auditori
Amadeus: BCNCAD, Galileo: 85775, 
Sabre: 39911, WorldSpan: 44085

Confortel Barcelona
Amadeus: BCN780, Galileo: 84043, 
Sabre: 31850, WorldSpan: 44780

Confortel Bel Art
Amadeus: BCNBEL, Galileo: 52252, 
Sabre: 58759, WorldSpan: BCNBE

Great Rate and Value can be booked in our website Confortel Hoteles, simply go to Reservations, click on the tab Travel Agents and register. Go to Promotional rates and look for Great Rate and Value. Please enter Rate Access code MAIL to access this rate. 

Thank you Elena for that great interview!


MAC Chat: An interview with Eddie Cooper; Eo Inn & Spa

by Sheona 4/22/2010 8:39:00 AM

A series of 5 minute interviews featuring travel industry leaders. 



This week's MAC Chat features our interview with Eddie Cooper, General Manager of Eo Inn & Spa. 

For more information:

What is unique about the Eo Inn's location?
The Eõ Inn & Spa is a small boutique hotel located downtown Orlando on the old-world brick streets of a charming area called Eola South. Situated on the southeast corner of Lake Eola Park, it is just a block away to the famous Thornton Park where many local shops and restaurants thrive. The park is populated daily with walkers & runners enjoying the ¾ mile paved path around the lake observing the gardens with dozens of bird species that reside there. There is a newly renovated playground entertaining children. Most major downtown festivals and events takes place at Lake Eola Park, including a wonderful farmer's market every Sunday.

What are some important features of the Eo Inn?
The Eõ Inn & Spa has 17 smartly decorated rooms each with its own private bath. All rooms offer a queen size bed or a king size bed. Our newest room, The Summerlin, offers two queen size beds. The balcony rooms have a quaint covered patio perfect for relaxing outside. Views of downtown and Lake Eola Park are available. Panera Bread restaurant is located on the first floor and room service is available to all guests during front desk hours. There is a 24 hour innkeeper available on site or just a phone call away. Other amenities include voice mail, robes, iron/ironing board, hairdryers and cable tv with HBO. 

What services are offered in the Eo Spa? 
Eõ Inn & Spa has a full service day spa offering massages, facials, waxing, relaxing body wraps, spa manicures and spa pedicures. The award winning spa is very popular with the local community and hotel guests alike. Spa parties have become a favorite for our patrons and staff. The Eõ Inn & Spa also has a jacuzzi on its second floor and pool access at our sister property.

What makes the Eo Inn appealing to travelers?
This inn is perfect for couples and corporate travelers. Wedding parties, family reunions, and other groups may want to consider taking the entire 17 room property to provide a very personal memorable experience for all. Anyone who enjoys privacy in a relaxed chic atmosphere will appreciate this inn. This is not your typical chain hotel. The Eõ Inn & Spa gives every guest a sense of exclusivity and uniqueness that can only be found in a smaller privately owned establishment. The Eõ Inn & Spa has recently been praised and published in Travel + Leisure, Southern Living, USA Today, and other nationally received publications over the past ten years. In addition, the Eõ Inn & Spa has won multiple local awards making it a household name for the downtown community.

What Complimentary Amenities does the Eo Inn offer?
We offer complimentary Wifi Internet and Parking, which is truly unique in the downtown Orlando area.

Thank you Eddie for that great interview!


MAC Chat: An interview with Cristina Colomer, Royal Ramblas Hotel

by Sheona 4/20/2010 9:16:00 AM

A series of 5 minute interviews featuring travel industry leaders. 

Sponsored by: 


This week's  MAC Chat features our interview with Cristina Colomer, Sales Manager for Royal Ramblas Hotel in Barcelona, SP.


For more information visit:

Why is Royal Ramblas the ideal choice for travelers?
The Royal Ramblas is set in the heart of Barcelona’s lively Las Ramblas. The most important boulevard of the city where we can find the Opera House Liceu, the famous Market “La Boqueria”, the human statues and the bohemian painters.
The hotel, offers 119 recently renovated rooms, all non smoking and some with amazing views to Ramblas.

Our multilingual staff will welcome you. They will try to make your stay unforgettable and to please your needs, helping in anything you ask for.
We also want to remark that the building is entirely smoke-free, which is nowadays very much appreciated.

What activities can you recommend while visiting your hotel?
The hotel is ideally located for visiting the most interesting places of Barcelona which are a short walk away: The modernist quarter where main Gaudi’s building are located, the Gothic Quarter with the Cathedral and old city, the beach, the coastline, the Old harbor where Columbus monument stands…

The bus and metro stop (2 lines) is 50 meters walking from the hotel. It means that we are strategically located if you want to visit Barcelona. 

Do your rooms have free WiFi/Internet access? 
All rooms have WiFi internet access. It works with prepaid cards: 24 hours (approx. 18 EUR) or 45 minutes (approx. 9 EUR) 

Do you have any current promotions you would like to share with the Travel Agents?
Our Great Rate and Value Promotion is 15% commissionable. Visit our website for further packages promotions like the Cruise Package with transfers included: 

How can a Travel Agent book Royal Ramblas?
In GDS using our codes: Amadeus: BCNROY, Galileo: 3872, Sabre: 5595, WorldSpan: 2776

Great Rate and Value can be booked in our website, go to Reservations, click on the tab Travel Agents and register. Go to Promotional rates and look for Great Rate and Value. Please enter Rate Access code MAIL to access this rate.

Thank you Cristina for that great interview!


MAC Chat: An interview with Pascual Melendez, Hotel Front Maritim

by Sheona 4/16/2010 6:23:00 AM

A series of 5 minute interviews featuring travel industry leaders. 

Sponsored by: 


This week's  MAC Chat features our interview with Pascual Melendez , Sales Manager for Hotel Front Maritim.


For more information visit:

What will clients experience at your hotel?
The GBB Hotel Front Maritim is located in the heart of Barcelona’s business and financial district in the Sant Marti quarter. The hotel is just a few minutes walk to the CCIB convention center and Marbella Beach. In the immediate vicinity of the hotel are the underground stations of Selva de Mar, restaurants, bars and shops. The hotel has 177 guestrooms, one restaurant, a bar, meeting and conference rooms and a gym with steam and sauna facilities.

What activities/places are nearby for clients to enjoy? 
Bordering the Mediterranean Sea and Barcelona’s city beaches to the south, the up-and-coming district of Sant Martí boasts impressive, state-of-the-art buildings, and a trendy, non-stop nightlife. After spending the morning on the beach, head onto the leafy Rambla de Poble Nou to sample some tapas in one of the numerous, authentic and intimate restaurants in this traditional area. Then stroll down the tree-lined Diagonal Avenue in the afternoon, stopping off for some serious shopping in Glòries and Diagonal Mar. In the evening, start with a relaxing drink on the terrace of a bar, before venturing to a trendy cocktail bar, or top nightclub. 

Is there any advantage to staying at your hotel rather than other ones in the area?
Absolutely! The GBB Hotel Front Mairitm has 177 rooms with direct telephone line, internet connection, satellite TV, air conditioning, full bathrooms with bathtub or shower and hair dryer. Some of them adapted for handicapped people and some with sea views. In the hotel you can enjoy our fitness room, with cardio machines, sauna and steam bath, completely free for our clients. Also you can use our business centre with computers connected to internet complimentary and our restaurant where you will taste a large variety of Mediterranean cuisine. There is parking available in the same building. 
The hotel has 6 meeting rooms with audiovisual equipment, natural light, in front of the sea and high speed internet connection. They are the ideal place for the celebration of your meetings, conventions, banquets and all kinds of social events. 

Do you have any current promotions you would like to share with the Travel Agents?
Yes, our hotel is offering our promotion Great Rate and Value which includes 5% discount off BAR, Free High Speed Internet and 10% commission. 

How can a Travel Agent book GBB Hotel Front Maritim?
In GDS using our codes: Amadeus: BCNAFM, Galileo: 35376, Sabre: 58036, WorldSpan: FROM

In our website Hotel Front Maritim go to Reservations, click on the tab Travel Agents and register. Go to Promotional rates and look for Great Rate and Value. Please enter Rate Access code MAIL to access this rate. 

Thank you Pascual for that great interview!


MAC Chat: An interview with Pascual Melendez, GBB Hotel 4 Barcelona

by Sheona 4/16/2010 6:12:00 AM

A series of 5 minute interviews featuring travel industry leaders. 

Sponsored by: 


This week's  MAC Chat features our interview with Pascual Melendez , Sales Manager for the GBB Hotel 4 Barcelona.


For more information visit:

What are some of the key selling features of your hotel?
GBB Hotel 4 Barcelona opened in the beginning of 2010. This smart and stylish hotel is located in the up-market area of district 22, near Bogatell beach which from the 1992 Olympics, this area has become a magnet for Barcelonans and visitors alike. Just a short walk from the Hotel on la Rambla de Poble Nou you can find also many popular restaurants and bars where you can enjoy delicious “tapas”. 

The 142 air-conditioned guest rooms are equipped with complimentary wireless and cable internet connection, direct line telephone, ensuite bathroom and some offer splendid views of the Mediterranean Sea. 

Why is your hotel the ideal choice for travelers?
You will find an extremely helpful and cheerful Staff, to help you in all your needs to make a memorable staying. 
GBB Grup Best Hotels mission is always to serve our clients to guarantee a special experience. 

Tell the Travel Agents why they should book your hotel:
At GBB Hotel 4 Barcelona you will find all you need to have a great experience. The rooms are spacious and attractively designed and enjoy WiFi internet connection, dine at GBB Hotel 4 Barcelona's restaurant which serves a menu with Mediterranean touches. There is also a smaller cafeteria from which you can enjoy our snacks. 
Make the most of the free fitness centre, which also has a sauna and Jacuzzi to enjoy after a good work out. Complete with Turkish bath and massage treatments.
The GBB Hotel 4 Barcelona has numerous meeting rooms available making it an ideal place for congresses and business events.

Do you have any current promotions you would like to share with the Travel Agents?
Of course, our hotel is offering our promotion Great Rate and Value that includes a 5% discount off BAR, Free WiFi and 10% commission. 

How can a Travel Agent book GBB Hotel 4 Barcelona?
In GDS using our codes: Amadeus: BCN4BA, Galileo: 62226, Sabre: 117883, WorldSpan: 73806

In our website GBB Hotel 4 Barcelona go to Reservations, click on the tab Travel Agents and register. Go to Promotional rates and look for Great Rate and Value. Please enter Rate Access code MAIL to access this rate. 

Thank you Pascual for that great interview!


MAC Chat: An interview with Sharon Concepcion, Luxury Travel Network

by Sheona 4/15/2010 6:19:00 AM

A series of 5 minute interviews featuring travel industry leaders. 



This week's  MAC Chat features our interview with Sharon Concepcion, Operations Manager for Luxury Travel Network.


For more information visit:

Can you describe the Luxury Travel Network independent contractor program? 
The Luxury Travel Network host agency program offers experienced luxury agents an opportunity to sell high-end cruises and tours while enjoying the benefits of belonging to a premium luxury agency. The program is operated by Cruise Specialists, and offers our agents a Virtuoso affiliation, high commissions, preferred rates and exclusive amenities for their clients.

What type of benefits do the Luxury Travel Network members receive through the Virtuoso Affiliate Program? 
Virtuoso member affiliates benefit from intricate consumer direct-marketing campaigns, specialized training and accreditation programs, added-value arrangements with leading travel providers, unparalleled access to specialized travel experts, and detailed information regarding destinations and travel services. Through Virtuoso, Luxury Travel Network members earn desirable booking incentives and rewards and receive special amenities for their clients such as shipboard credits and complimentary shore excursions. 

Can any agent join the Luxury Travel Network program? 
An agent must be able to demonstrate a proven luxury travel sales record to be approved to join the Luxury Travel Network. 

What unique services do you offer to your independent contractors? 
Being part of Travel Leaders Group allows our Luxury Travel Network to provide our contractors with the dependability and financial backing of a large company, while offering them personal support from our highly experienced team of luxury travel professionals. 

Through our size and tremendous buying power, we are able to offer our contractors high commissions, innovative technology and access to sell exclusive cruises and tours. Other unique benefits of belonging to the Luxury Travel Network include complete GDS support and assistance, access to a significant number of air commission contracts and complimentary back-up coverage when an agent is out of the office.

What types of technology do Luxury Travel Members have access to? 
Luxury agents receive access to our proprietary TravelConnect client management and reporting software, the Sabre Cruises tool, and several GDS programs at no additional charge. Agents use TravelConnect to manage their clients, bookings, commissions, groups, financials and much more in one location. They can easily report their bookings, generate invoices and produce sales and commission tracking reports.

The Sabre Cruises tool allows agents to review and book cruises from 13 cruise lines all in one convenient place. Luxury Travel Network members can use this tool to view fares, commissions, negotiated and group rates, itineraries, and special services for each of our participating cruise vendors to help match their clients with the right cruise for them. 

What types of training and networking events are offered to Luxury Travel Network members? 
In addition to the specialized marketing and destination training members receive directly from Virtuoso, they receive continuous GDS education and training on TravelConnect, and invitations to weekly live webinars featuring product introductions and updates from premium and luxury cruise lines and tour operators. Members are also invited to attend an exclusive annual travel convention where they receive in depth Virtuoso training, meet preferred luxury cruise and tour vendors, and network with other luxury agents specializing in a variety of niche markets. 

Thank you Vickie for that great interview!


MAC Chat: An interview with Nick Giammusso, VIP Seats

by Sheona 4/13/2010 5:49:00 AM

A series of 5 minute interviews featuring travel industry leaders. 



This week's MAC Chat features our interview with Nick Giammusso, President /
Co-Founder of VIP Seats.  

For more information:

What's the "hot" ticket right now?
Everywhere I go I get asked this question over and over. You can find 
this information on our homepage by visiting Under 
the three Sports-Concerts & Theater headings you will find the Top 20 
Most Popular events for the week. The Boston Red Sox, Justin Berber and 
Wicked hold the #1 spots as the most popular events in North America 
this week! We are currently re-branding ourselves. VIP Seats has just 
this week unveiled our new logo and brand new website that we feel is 
one of the best in the ticket business.

How can my Travel Agency benefit from VIP Seats' services? 
We pay commissions! We specialize in premium seating to sold out events
worldwide. We have found that event tickets are true compliments to
travel. We're event ticket specialists! What we hear from Agents all 
over the world is that they're looking for someone in our business they 
can trust! I can tell you today as you're reading this, that you have 
now found someone in the ticket business you can trust! We've been at 
this for over 16 years now. We have over 5,000 registered Travel 
Agents! You can sign up to become an affiliate of VIP Seats online and 
start earning commissions today.

Does VIP Seats handle International Events? 
Yes! In the last 90 days we have booked event tickets and packages to 
such prestigious international events as the 2010 Winter Olympics- 
Vancouver, FIFA 2010 World Cup Soccer- South Africa, French Open- Paris,
Wimbledon- London, Sumo Wrestling- Japan, Serie A Soccer- Italy,
Premiership Soccer- England, Formula One- Montreal & U2- Rome.

Does VIP Seats send out a Newsletter?
Our clients have always craved information! As an organization we
haven't always been very good at that. Today, Social Networking gives 
us the opportunity to open those lines of communication with our 
clients. Facebook is an amazing tool on so many different fronts. As 
an example, we can offer 'Last Minute Specials' and concert 
announcements to all of our Facebook Fans with a few quick keystrokes. 
I strongly suggest you become a Facebook Fan of VIP Seats!! You've also 
probably received our Mailpound emails over the years. We have come to 
realize that Agents are more likely to open an email from Mailpound so 
we'll keep sending them! 

What make VIP Seats so different from all those other online ticket 
Service! You call and we actually answer the phone. Sounds simple but 
it's true. The last thing any Agent wants to do is lose a big client 
over an event ticket order. If we say we're going to deliver your 
tickets to your client's London Hotel we will! We do it time and time 
again! We treat our clients like Gold! In our industry, we have 
definitely carved out a "niche" in the Travel Industry. We under 
promise and over. We've had a working relationship with almost all of 
the major credit card companies concierge side of the business that 
includes MasterCard, Citibank VISA, Discover & Carte Blanche. In fact,
our website is directly linked to the Citi Cards website. They trust 
us, shouldn't you? 

Thank you Nick for that great interview!



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The opinions expressed herein are my own personal opinions and do not represent my employer's view in anyway.

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