Now that the Christmas holidays are just a memory, it is of course time to start to think of our summer holiday, or mid-winter, or that cruise, or skiing and this month we have interviewed thebestof Hertford and Ware’s member that specialises in travel: Karen Ward from Travel Counsellors.
Karen has worked in the Travel Industry for over 30 years, with 2 different airlines, a Tour Operator and a High Street Travel Agents where she was a Travel Consultant and then Branch Manager for many years.
Karen now runs her own business with Travel Counsellors, and this means she can cater to her own clients and give them personal service with all the backing, technology and support of Travel Counsellors. Travel Counsellors are celebrating their 20th Anniversary this year! They're an award-winning company including the Queen's Award for Enterprise for International Trade, awarded to them in 2014.
Karen sources and books everything travel! Including: flights, hotels, package holidays, tailor-made holidays, cruises, villas, weddings abroad & honeymoons, train journeys, city breaks, safaris, river cruises, adventure holidays, sports breaks, UK breaks, airport hotels/parking/lounges, travel insurance, car hire, transfers, theatre breaks, attraction tickets etc. She'll look at all the possible options and provide the best advice for her clients.
Karen, how did you get started in this business?
I wanted to work in Travel, and was lucky enough to get my first job with Japan Air Lines.
What do you consider your biggest achievement so far?
My business achievements have been having a really enjoyable career in a varied, interesting and ever-changing industry and of course running my own business with Travel Counsellors. My 2 beautiful daughters have been my best personal achievement!
Could you describe one of your typical workdays for me?
Well everyday is different as I never know what enquiries will come my way, but I try and do my admin tasks early in the morning, this might include checking clients in for their flights, printing all their documents, delivering documents or brochures, among other things. I will then concentrate on clients' enquiries and bookings. We have hundreds of suppliers, tour operators, hotels etc that we can deal with and we have an amazing system to quote or book from scratch tailoring holidays for the perfect match!
What parts of your job do you find most challenging and most enjoyable?
It's all a challenge as every day is different, but this is what I love about it! Working on tailor-made quotes, they can be really varied and I'm always amazed at how adventurous my clients can be! Cruises are also a favourite of mine, having been many times myself and still planning on going again!
Who has been the biggest influence in your work like?
Probably my Mum and Dad as they were both such hard workers and both had a great attitude to work and people. I definitely still hold all their values.
What can you tell us about your business that not many other people know?
I have colleagues in 7 other countries across the globe, as well as all my UK colleagues, so if my clients need to know the best restaurant to go to in Sydney (for example) I can ask a colleague who lives there, oh… and we can book private jets!
What do you do for fun?
Go on holiday! Spend time with my family, go to the theatre. I do Pilates and Tai Chi. Oh and I'm still learning to play the piano!
To conclude – tell us about you in 140 characters or less…
My favourite places are California and Madeira. My favourite type of holiday at the moment is definitely cruising. I love them!
For more information then call Karen on: 01992 877230 or email her at: firstname.lastname@example.org or visit: www.travelcounsellors.co.uk/karen.ward.
Member since: 11th March 2014
My name is Victoria Hunter and I'm a true Hertford person - I went to school in Hertford and grew up here. I understand the importance of bringing trusted businesses and the community together, and believe...