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Saturday, 30 June 2012 20:00

Travel Memories

Written by  Katie Hultgren

Recently, I have been cleaning out the estate of my in-laws. It has been a journey of discovery, while at the same time, a true history lesson. We have found so much memorabilia that was obviously very important to the ones to which it once belonged, but to those left behind, it is rather a mystery why these items were ever saved in the first place. I was touched by the variety of things I found, and realized that there really is such a thing as the memory of a lifetime.

My in-laws were not worldly people; they did not travel much. They occasionally took summer vacations in Cape Cod, went skiing in Vermont, and for their honeymoon, traveled to Florida by car from Connecticut. But, that seems to be the farthest they ever went. Neither ever flew on an airplane. 

But, from each trip they took, they saved everything. They saved every travel pamphlet, every map, AAA brochures, as well as silly souvenirs, matchbooks from restaurants, and even menus and placemats. We found admission ticket stubs, postcards, receipts from years gone by - even a hand written notebook detailing the price of a soda and a beer along their honeymoon journey back in 1956 - .20 and .75 respectively, and the $20 receipt for that emergency new tire needed along the way. They used a travel agent to arrange their honeymoon by auto. They were provided with road maps and hotel reservations, as well as handwritten notes and suggestions on their itinerary - I have those documents, still neatly arranged in a vintage pocket envelope.

The fact that so many items were cherished for many years shows exactly how important a vacation is to a traveler. They save their money and plan, anticipating their experience long before they ever depart. Once they get to wherever they have decided to go, they make those memories that last a lifetime. Their trip is not only an investment of their time and money, for most travelers it is a very special occasion. They expect to have fun, and enjoy themselves. They trust that you have arranged a trip for them to do so. 

Working in the travel industry can make us forget that travel is not an every day occurrence for most people. It is important that we remember to provide the travelers we serve with the means to make each vacation special and memorable. Every client has a different reason to travel, a unique set of circumstances and budget - but every trip you plan should be as important as the next. Not only will your clients remember exactly what their trip was like, they will remember how you helped to make it happen. Every time they look at that postcard from their trip they will remember how that trip began - with you.

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