MAST Travel Network recently hosted in-person regional summer workshops in nine locations throughout the Midwest, the first live events the travel advisor organization has held since the beginning of COVID-19.
“It was the best thing that has happened in the travel industry in five months,” said MAST member Janelle Throne of Lighthouse Travel in Camanche, Iowa. “All safety measures were in place. I felt completely comfortable wearing a mask when not seated at my desk that was six feet from anyone. Thanks to MAST for being the happiness in my day!”
MAST Preferred Suppliers participated in mini-seminar formats to discuss how to sell in today’s market, how their individual brands are incorporating health and safety protocols, and solutions for agencies to ensure their survival.
MAST President and COO John Werner presented a seminar entitled, “What Customers Want from You.” He discussed how to eliminate the pain points in travel, allowing customers to be in control, offering flexibility, and providing greater authenticity and personalization.
The seminar also covered how agencies should change the way they do business by using customer-signed liability waivers, ensuring all customers purchase travel insurance, covering supplier terms and conditions with customers, and answering all the questions about traveling during the pandemic including restrictions, health and safety guidelines, and what destinations and travel providers are doing to keep everyone safe.
“If you thought your job was complicated before, it is about to get even more complicated,” Werner said.
MAST will host two more events. A Virtual Owners Summit on Sept. 29 will feature three speakers – Peter Lobasso, ASTA’s general counsel, attorney Christopher Minelli, and insurance expert Phil Horn. The event will include breakout rooms, a town hall meeting, entertaining breaks, and a virtual networking cocktail reception.
The second event is a hybrid version of MAST Sales Sensation taking place on Nov. 17 at Drury Lane Theatre & Conference Center in Oakbrook Terrace, Ill. Details are still being developed.
MAST also started a vlog/podcast series titled MASTers of Travel, in which Werner will conduct video chats with members who have first-hand experience traveling since destinations have re-opened and with other travel industry experts.
MAST is also preparing to launch four new programs within their travel advisor training series Xpedition. These new programs will provide training for new-to-the-industry advisors, as well as destination training on Asia, South America and an extension of their cruise training program.
MAST is a travel agency network with over 220 agency members throughout North America, primarily in the Midwest. Member-owned and driven, MAST provides programs and services that result in increased sales, greater profitability, and mutually beneficial relationships for members and suppliers alike.
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