It’s your very first time leading a trip. You know where you’re going and you have people interested, but where do you go from there? We asked seasoned trip leaders, as well as our own employees, for their words of wisdom. Here’s what they had to say:
“Start group meetings early to discuss the ministry’s needs and how to be servants and not served.” – Rick, Customer
– Rick, Customer
“Ask your group from the beginning of the trip what their big two are. Is it budget and itinerary? Is it itinerary and airline? Is it convenience and itinerary? Ask what means most to the group so that your advisor can keep a look out for these things.
Don’t worry and let the sales agent handle it – that is our job to make your trip easier!”
– Hannah Bass, Group Sales Advisor
“Obtain a copy of everyone’s passport ahead of time so that they know the names they are giving us match the passport – and then take those copies with them in case someone loses their passport in another country. That copy will help expedite a new passport.”
– Valerie Wermuth, Group Sales Advisor
“Save yourself the stress of making all the reservations and connections with ground transportation and hire Fellowship Travel International to make your arrangements.”
– Todd, Customer
“Pray for a lot of guidance. Do research on the area, customs, customs, etc. Allow for more time. Communicate well with your team. Establish a chain of command.”
– Florian, Customer
“Just assume someone will be sick/injured immediately before the trip and cannot travel. It happens all the time! Be prepared by asking your agent about name change or cancellation policies with the airline you’re traveling on from the beginning. It varies with every airline, so even seasoned group leaders should ask. Travel insurance is always a good fail-safe too!”
– Jenny Jeremiah, Group Sales Advisor
“Think through, establish, and communicate to the group what things you’ll be responsible for and what things they will be responsible for. Get copies of their documents a month prior, figure out how to communicate if most don’t have cell phones.” – Dean, Customer
“Don’t over plan.” – Claudia, Customer
“Please pack your patience and manners. If there is a flight delay/cancellation and you are speaking to the gate agent, keep in mind they probably have been yelled at and been spoken to rudely all day. Show them love and appreciation for what they do. Have a small treat for them to say thank you. Suggestion: Hershey miniatures or similar.”
– Leanne Leigers, Individual Sales Advisor
“Create a security protocol in writing, then implement it.”
– Guillermo, Customer
“Assign everyone a number. Make them sound off in order before moving on to the next stop. Fool proof way to make sure you get everyone.”
– Jeremy Lawhorn, VP
“If you run into any trouble during your trip, call our after-hours emergency helpline for assistance with last-minute booking due to a flight delay, cancellation, personal emergency, etc.
– Aimee Fauerbach, Marketing Coordinator
Thinking of leading a trip and don’t know where to start? The Fellowship Travel team has your back. For 37+ years, we’ve worked with group leaders to plan trips that change lives. Our extensive experience enables us to be a resource to you and your organization. Request a quote today to get your trip off the ground!
It’s a big world. Get out there!
Your FTI Team