Those familiar with Canadians’ travel habits to the Hawaiian Islands know that the 2016 peak travel season is upon us, and with a dollar that has made travel to Hawaii more of a challenge this year, there may be no better time than the present for agents to brush up on their Hawaii selling skills.
Here to help is the Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau’s (HVCB) Official Hawaii Destination Specialist Program. This tiered program will help you sell Hawaii like you never have before while at the same time providing the opportunity to gain exclusive Hawaii benefits. And if you sign up and complete Level 1 of the Official Hawaii Destination Specialist Program through Travelweek’s Learning Centre (travelweeklearningcentre.ca) before the end of 2016 you will also be eligible to win a five-night stay at the Sheraton Princess Kaiulani.
The Official Hawaii Destination Specialist Program is a self-guided course that delivers in-depth knowledge and insights into the Hawaiian Islands as well as effective sales tips to transform agents into booking pros. Best of all, the program is free, online and mobile-friendly so agents can take it anytime, anywhere and at their own pace.
During the course travel professionals will learn uncommon details about the destination’s six distinctive islands, how to match different travellers’ profiles with their perfect Hawaiian vacations and practical tips for cross selling and upselling Hawaii to maximize revenue. This expertise is an important element in building credibility with clients – which results in increased bookings, greater commission and more repeat business.
Once Level 1 of the program is complete, agents will then earn Hawaii Destination Specialist designation and gain exclusive benefits, including consumer referrals, specialist only-webinars, one-year subscription to HAWAII MAGAZINE, access to ePostcard Marketing Tool, use of the Hawaii Destination Specialist logo, personalized emails for Hawaiian Islands-Bound Clients.
Canadian agents who go through Travelweek’s Learning Centre to become a Destination Specialist will also be entered into a draw for a five-night stay at the Sheraton Princess Kaiulani (agents must complete the program by Dec. 31, 2016).
American graduates of the Hawaii Destination Specialist Program had this to say about their experience:
“I discovered several new ways to sell Hawaii,” said Patti Lehman, luxury travel advisor, The Travel Agent, Inc. “Each island’s program was informative, user-friendly and easy-to-follow. I found I was able to retain the information more easily.”
“The course gives you a fresh insight on what Hawaii is all about. I have been able to convince clients who are already set to go somewhere else…to consider Hawaii instead,” said Rebecca Gaerlan, MCC, owner, A Plus Travel.
Beyond the Destination Specialist designation, agents can also become a specialist for a specific island – or all six of them – to achieve Destination Expert status. There’s even a Master Specialist designation upon completion of on-island training. The further agents advance their education, the greater the benefits, including priority ranking on gohawaii.com’s consumer referral tool.
On top of the Official Hawaii Destination Specialist Program, agents will also find a host of other tools at their fingertips on HVCB’s website designed specifically for travel professionals, including Island resource pages, What’s New Section: Island Updates, Hawaiian cultural toolkit, Hawaiian language audio dictionary, media centre with library of videos and images, activities and attractions directory, festival and events directory, Explore Hawaii Interactive Travel Guide, downloadable marketing templates, posters and maps, Expressly For Agents e-newsletter and wholesaler listings.
Visit agents.gohawaii.com. To access the Official Destination Specialist Program visit travelweeklearningcentre.ca.