I’ve been on the road a lot these past few months for both pleasure and representing Discover Coronado. Let me tell you, I have met some very interesting people and seen some oddball places! After my holiday flight was canceled by Southwest, my family was stranded in Texas. Thankfully, I learned that my kids actually CAN survive a 17-hour road trip. I have also learned about myself. This came in handy when the computer glitch at the FAA canceled another flight of mine two weeks later.
The trips I’ve taken have really helped me grow. Like you, I learned to embrace the change and launch Plan B with a (B)rave heart.
I traveled to Las Vegas, Dallas, Austin, Ventura, Phoenix, Chicago, Washington D.C., San Antonio, and Columbus. All in just the last 3 months! In every city, I was welcomed by enthusiastic locals ready to serve and make a difference in my day. It reminded me to offer the same to our weary travelers to Coronado Island. Every Lyft driver had a story to tell. I don’t know why people want to tell me their life story in a 15-minute ride, but they do. (More about Lyft below.)
Each of the tradeshows and client events I attended for Discover Coronado had planners that were so excited for what the future holds. It was infectious! Yes, they were exhausted, but with happy faces, they were excited to hear about our resorts on Coronado Island.
Most recently, I attended the PCMA Convening Leaders event, and it was such an inspiring event! It dawned on me that we need to make time to do things that make us happy. Change things up if they are not working. Move outside the box while learning from the past. All this and learning to be flexible (and forgiving) with the airlines. They too will move forward with (B)rave strategies.
Here are the six takeaways from my recent travel:
- Let’s accept the new norm of travel. We will not go back to the pre-covid ways. We now have new challenges and new motivation to deal with them.
- We need to take better care of ourselves. Schedule breaks throughout the day. Put them on your calendar and get outside for 15 minutes for fresh air.
- We are all in this together. Planners and suppliers must work together for the same goal, with lots of give and take. In some cycles, the planners will push hard for lower rates. In other cycles, resorts will have the ball in their court. This is what our industry goes through, so remember there’s always a new cycle.
- Planners like you are looking for a relationship. The RFP process in Cvent starts with a relationship. If planners find trust in a salesperson or resort, they will eventually contract the resort.
- Tradeshow booths are no longer the only way to present a destination. Discover Coronado has found new ways of engaging with planners. We are instead planning very intimate events with a selective group of planners. One-on-one moments bring more to the table than standing in a booth for hours trying to engage planners walking by. This is where the saying “Less is More” really fits in.
- Lyft drivers know the best places to have dinner. Don’t be afraid to ask them where to find the best place to unwind afterhours. They know where the local gems are. In many ways, they are “Yelp on Wheels.”
I hope I have given you at least one takeaway. I’m eager to learn more about your travel experiences (good and bad!) I invite you to share your road warrior stories with me. Click here to email me directly.
Destination Sales Director