TORONTO — Just because travel has effectively come to a halt, doesn’t mean travel retailers aren’t busy. Quite the opposite, in fact. Just ask TPI’s CEO, Zeina Gedeon.
TPI is working hard keeping its members updated on the health and safety protocols developed by various suppliers. “The intent is to educate our Advisors on the new protocols so when the business opens up, they are ready and prepared for questions they may receive from their clients and have the resources available at their fingertips to help close those sales. Our next phase after health and safety protocols will focus on supplier product trainings,” says Gedeon.
In keeping with the trend to domestic travel amid the pandemic, TPI has also created an exclusive website for its Advisors to showcase a list of travel partners that service the Canadian travel market, as well as a list of all Virtuoso hotel partners.
“We have a dedicated team working closely with our supplier partners on a strategy to gather promote North American products for our Advisors,” notes Gedeon.
One thing has slowed down, and it’s a positive sign that it has. Since the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis TPI has been hosting town hall meetings for its Advisors. In those first chaotic weeks the host agency started with town halls twice a day. Now that the immediate crisis has passed for cancellations and issues, says Gedeon, TPI has scaled back the town halls to three times a week.
Several guest speakers, from mental health experts to motivational speakers, have taken part in the town halls, adding to the value of the initiative for TPI Advisors. “Just recently we did a motivational session with Patrick Sweeney who is the ‘Fear Guru’ and author of the best-selling book ‘Fear is Fuel’,” says Gedeon.
And how are sales amid these unprecedented circumstances? “We are seeing a very positive outlook for our 2021 and 2022 bookings which assures us that travel will bounce back with a vengeance. When the border restrictions are lifted, clients will be ready to travel,” she says.