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The Group Travel Leader Small Market Meetings Going on Faith

Planner Talk Back: Finding New Travelers

Select Traveler asked these group travel planners, “What technique for finding new travelers has been the most successful?” Check out their responses.


Kelly Peticolas, Principia Lifelong Learning

Elsah, Illinois

“The diversity of our programs has attracted a younger demographic. We often see our older alumni bring their adult children. That has helped increase our exposure. Our travelers are having such a great time on these trips that word spreads. We also send two print mailings a year, in the fall and spring, that promote our upcoming trips. I run an on-campus two-week summer session for a continuing education program every June. We do a lot of promotion during that event.”

Laurie Staus, Central Bank of Sedalia

Sedalia, Missouri

“I think having travelers that talk about their experience with family and friends is a great way to get new travelers. I’ve had people say they would never do group travel; but once they experience being with a group and make those friendships, they end up being repeat customers. Doing travel shows to let the customers know what is involved in group travel gives them a better understanding of the experience. That also gets a lot of customers signed up.”

Tammy McCullars, Appalachian State University

Boone, North Carolina

“It is mostly word-of-mouth. We treat our travelers as part of the Appalachian family, whether they are alumni or the many friends of alumni we have garnered. We also, of course, use our regular alumni Facebook, along with separate travel Facebook accounts; targeted and broadcast emails; Flickr; and other social media outlets. The Facebook travel account is mostly used while on tour to post pictures and messages to let the families and friends at home know their loved ones are having fun and are being taken care of.”

Maddie Stojanovic, First National Bank of Fort Smith

Fort Smith, Arkansas

“In 2019, we released the Refer a Friend program in the Prestige Platinum Club and have received great feedback and participation since. The program encourages our current members to invite their friends to both travel with our group and to become members themselves. I truly love group travel because of the friendships that are made, and that bond only grows when our customers bring their friends to join the fun.”