We love talking to members about what they do, why they love North Tyneside as a place to do business. We’ve been chatting to Graham Townsley – Travel Counsellor. 

Tell us a little more about the business

I am a Travel Counsellor; this is a Franchise selling holidays. Well that’s I suppose a common perception.

My view is I am a business owner and a real love for travel, whether that be myself exploring different countries and cultures, or creating trips for my customers and reliving their tales and stories. I also have a passion and pride myself to provide the best customer experience. This mix I believe is a powerful combination you can’t get on the high street or the internet.

Travel Counsellors is my support, they provide me with the tools where I can say your money is protected 100%. When your away you can contact myself or our duty office at any time, yes anytime 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. You don’t get a holiday with me, I provide an experience, I help you create memories and offer you products that aren’t available on the internet or high street via Travel Agents.

The process is relaxed and caring, so I wouldn’t provide you a quote unless I understood where you were going, why you were going. If I didn’t ask these questions and have an understanding, then I wouldn’t know what to recommend and what’s best for you. Yes, what’s best for you, I am totally independent and not tied to any airline or holiday company, that’s unique and for you means you get the best experience.

What is your motivation for doing what you do?

Working for British Airways for over 18 years I could see the changes in how we were buying our holidays and more importantly we wanted more when we went away. I pride myself not only on my customer service experience I provide, also I keep myself up to date with holiday trends and what’s happening in the industry.

With that I could see the limitation of the internet and how the package holiday was evolving. The traditional Travel Agent wasn’t independent and again unable to provide the holiday experience we were searching, also the trust was fading as customers having holidays cancelled or losing money with the collapse of holiday companies.

What are your plans for the business?

So, as a Travel Counsellor I can offer unique products and package holidays to suit the individual as tailor made, while taking all the hassle away.

My plans for my business are to create a community or customer base that talks and shares experiences, this I believe creates trust and offers inspiration to places others may want to travel. I believe this is unique and will combine the best of both worlds, caring personal service while keeping up to date with technology, this again provides trust with the ‘MYTC’ app, taking money securely and all your documents in one place.

Caring side is from our first meeting until you return, understanding what you want from your holiday allows me to utilise my contacts to achieve this. I can contact suppliers and hotels direct with any special requests, I can make sure your passports are up to date, correct visa, any vaccinations needed.

Then the checking in, seat selection and your aware of baggage allowed, small details and important details in my experience can be forgotten about, but I can take this hassle away.

All these small details and taking a genuine interest in you will allow my business to grow, I also believe I am doing this at the right time, I believe we are looking towards a more personal service, human to human gaining the trust of experts who can guide us and offer recommendations.

How has North Tyneside Business Forum helped your business?

I have had nothing more than encouragement in both myself and my idea in changing how we book our holidays and travel plans.

I have networked and met some wonderful people, and the favourite part of this and doing business in North Tyneside is its people. We are a hardworking, friendly, trusting and very supportive of each other.

One thing that makes your business different from the rest

Myself.

Wanting to create those special trips, having unique product and knowing I am creating and have the responsibility to create memories that will last a lifetime. It’s very much a personal service so it’s me that makes the difference.

 

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