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TORONTO — Lynda Sinclair, Senior Vice-President, Leisure for Vision Travel Solutions, passed away Sept. 8. She was 60 years old.
Lynda was a force of nature in the travel industry, a dynamo known for her energy, her sales expertise and her knowledge and love of the travel and tourism business.
Over the past 40+ years she worked with some of the best-known brands in retail travel, and along the way made many friends.
Lynda got her start in retail travel with well-known names like New Wave Travel in Toronto. She joined Ensemble Canada (back when it was still known as GIANTS) in 2000, serving as National Director of Sales until 2004.
A new opportunity came calling and she signed on with Vision 2000 Travel Group (as it was then known), serving as Director of Operations from 2004 – 2008.
The rapid expansion of the home-based sector brought Lynda to Travel Counsellors Canada for a two-year stint. She headed up that host agency’s Canadian operations as General Manager, Canada from 2008 – 2010.
In 2010 she rejoined Vision Travel Solutions, bringing her home-based sector skills to her role as General Manager of Vision 2000’s Travel@home team before transitioning to her most recent roles as Director, Leisure Business Development (since 2012) and Senior Vice-President, Leisure Travel (since 2014).
Travelweek’s e-newsletter for home-based agents, Sphere, benefited from Lynda’s wisdom and way with words, thanks to her monthly columns that touched on everything from how home-based agents can successfully compete with OTAs, to maximizing social media’s potential, to branding tips, to effective work habits for home-based agents.
Her advice in these columns was smart, funny and down to earth, just like she was. Her most recent column, submitted just 3 weeks ago, took on the ins and outs of charging service fees. Titled ‘Why You Should Charge Service Fees. Yes You Should’, Lynda acknowledged the tough times for the industry amid COVID-19, but said agents should recognize the value of their services, and not apologize for charging what they’re worth. “It’s a great time to reinvent yourself. Just because you love what you do, it shouldn’t be a hobby,” she said.
Lynda had been battling cancer for several years. Her work ethic throughout her fight was incredible. She passed away peacefully this morning surrounded by her family, says Brian Robertston, President, Canada West, Direct Travel Inc.
“Lynda was a mentor, a friend and an inspiration to everyone she worked with. She brought energy and enthusiasm every day in her 40+ year career in travel including many years at Vision Travel/ Direct Travel,” said Robertson.
So many of Lynda’s industry colleagues also became close friends. Tourism Marketing International’s Martha Chapman was one of them. “We have lost a tremendous personality, so passionate about the industry but also known for her boundless energy, enthusiasm and tremendous sense of fun,” says Chapman. “A sad day for us all.”