Insights into the advice we offer by Naomi, BTA team member and resident chatterbox.
People have previously asked me “Don’t you just sell whoever gives you the highest commission?”
Short answer: No.
We make recommendations based on you, the traveller, and what we know about you and your likes, preferences, and desires.
In fact, the operator offering the highest commission rarely crosses my mind when we are chatting about your upcoming travel plans.
All these thoughts HAVE crossed my mind during a consultation at some point in the past:
➡ I want to do that, too. That sounds awesome.
➡ How/where did you find out about that?
➡ Great, I have done that, I can speak from experience. (Yay!)
➡ Where on Earth is THAT? (This doesn’t happen very often, but occasionally someone will surprise me)
➡ How do I get you there? (Just this week the destination in question was Comoros. Answer: not simply; there is lots of flying and connections required.)
Also, commissions have decreased radically post-Covid. Especially airlines who think they don’t need us, yet we’re spending more time than ever sorting out airline issues like baggage (Is it included? Will it get to your destination?) and schedule changes.
There are thousands of travel operators and suppliers all over the world and it’s simply not possible to know about every one of them. Your head would probably explode.
Our recommendations are influenced by a number of factors. In no particular order, we recommend based upon:
Our knowledge of you; It’s not a fluke that we often become quite good friends with our travellers.
Our personal experiences with a product or supplier or destination; (if I’ve loved a product/destination that makes a huge impact on my recommendations)
How professional and efficient is the booking experience with the supplier/operator; (if it’s too hard/convoluted/redundant, you’ve lost me)
The knowledge and expertise of an operator/supplier;
Their financial stability and viability;
The experiences and feedback of our travellers;
Price and product range;
Interesting itineraries/places visited/experiences;
The operator/supplier philosophy and their attitude to animal welfare, sustainability, responsible travel;
➡ Do they support their local community/country?
➡ Does the money we/you are spending benefit (stay in) the country/community you’re visiting?
➡ Do they care about the community?
➡ Are they employing locals/citizens?
➡ Do they care about the environment? Try to minimise their impact?
➡ What is their attitude towards animal welfare and conservation?