TheCOVID_Questionnaire_TW_Apr22

THE COVID-19 QUESTIONNAIRE: Firdosh Bulsara – Victours

Victours, one of the best known names for travel to Europe and beyond to Africa and Asia, “has always been more like a family” says Firdosh Bulsara, Victours’ Manager, Product & Marketing.

The tour operator, in business now for more than 60 years, is handling the COVID-19 crisis with a sense of purpose, and togetherness. “We are a small and intimate company and in time of crisis the family is prepared to make sacrifices,” says Bulsara. The company’s website is victours.ca.

THE-COVID-19-QUESTIONNAIRE-Victorious

Firdosh Bulsara, Victours

“Our workforce has taken it very well and operate on reduced work-hours. Most of them are set up to work from home and so the continuity of client/supplier relationship is maintained. Of course, the CERB has come to their/our rescue as well and that was indeed very helpful. Very proud to be Canadian!” he says.

Bulsara is the latest interviewee for our COVID-19 Questionnaire…

 

Q. What do you think travel will look like post-COVID 19?

A. “This is a very good question but also a very tough one! Travel will definitely bounce back, but it will be in phases and slow to start off. There are hurdles to overcome. The pandemic has overshadowed every other sound bite. Right now the public is scared to even get out of their homes, let alone get on planes or ships. Post-COVID-19, taking a vacation as we have been used to, will change drastically with major emphasis on personal health, sanitization in hotels and on board planes and ships, access to medical facilities and social distancing. However, I also believe that people have short memories. Twelve months following the introduction of effective vaccines and bulk immunity, life will return to normal as we know it now. We do have to wait it out for about 20 months or so before normalcy returns.”

 

Q. What do you think will rebound most quickly, and what might take some time?

A. “Every destination that succeeds in fighting the virus and passes beyond the peak and is getting to the bottom of the downward trend will initially start off with domestic tourism, simply because people would feel very safe moving within their own country before taking the plunge in international travel. As for Canada, we may start seeing travel rebound by the fall (October-November) to the islands for the sun-seekers, of course subject to how the virus behaves during its second wave, anticipated by the onset of the coming winter. International travel will be slow to start, perhaps in the spring of 2021.”

 

Q. What new destinations are you really excited about for when this is over, and ideally where will your own first trip be?

A. “When all this is over, our first order of business will be to take to the skies visiting agents and agencies in various provinces. Their loyalty and their support has meant the world to us and it is important that we meet them face-to-face. Also, I am really excited about my planned tour of Peru & Argentina, booked for travel in May 2021. It’s an extensive exploration and these destinations will then appear in Victours’ collection of exotic destinations.”

 

Q. What do you like most, and least, about working from home?

A. “The best thing about working from home is the absence of driving to & from work. I save approximately 2 to 2.5 hours each day! Now all I need to do after the morning shower is to climb down a flight of stairs and am in my make-shift office to begin the day. Besides, I can never have a bad-hair-day! The least I like about working from home is the high-frequency of travel between my chair and the refrigerator. Unfortunately, there is no lock on the fridge door!”

 

Q. The travel industry is showing its strength and resilience as it rallies to take on the unprecedented impact from the coronavirus pandemic. What message does Victours want to get out to travel agents?

A. “To the travel agents, firstly, our sincere thanks for the years of support. 2020 is our 61st year in business and we have always deeply appreciated your loyalty. Stay safe, stay healthy, stay strong, and stay connected. Although we have been dealt a wicked blow that has knocked the wind from our sails, together, we will ride out this storm and emerge into a changed world! With time, travel will return with a wave of pent-up demand and we’ll be rocking together again. Until then we will keep connected and continue to be by your side should you need our assistance.”