Hidar Elmais believes in putting the client first and providing a high level of service in the process. The owner of Travel Gurus strives to find new and creative ways to sell travel. Elmais is ready to tackle whatever comes his way.
Hidar is always thinking of new and creative ways to sell travel. During COVID, he was still positively promoting travel, encouraging bookings for when people are ready to travel. He keeps his agents up to date with trainings and information. He is an out of the box thinker, which is something we need during these times to re-engage clients.
Can you tell us a little about yourself and how long you’ve been in the industry?
After graduating from MacEwan University Travel Program I knew this industry was for me. I’ve been in the industry now for 10 years.
Why and how did you decide to become a travel advisor?
I was in university taking another program when I decided to change it up and do something I was going to love doing.
What’s your favourite part of being a travel agent?
The best part of being a travel agent is showing clients your worth. Showing them how much you take care off and the advice/tips you can provide to make their travel experience even more amazing.
What’s a key thing you learned during the pandemic?
I always thought I was a forward thinking person. The pandemic made me realize just how much more I needed to grow, adapt and change. We moved into a new bigger location, added a local tour experience and a full travel accessories store online and retail. The pandemic has taught me to diversify and build better for the future of travel.
What will be your first post-pandemic trip and why?
I can’t wait to take some more adventure trips like to Peru or Singapore. Adventure trips are unlike another in which you immerse yourself in the beauty of the people and places you visit. We need more than ever this personal connection to the places we are visiting.
Do you believe more people will use travel advisors after COVID-19?
Definitely. Our worth has never been more tested and people want to keep up with all the new rules and restrictions which are almost impossible to search online.
From charging fees to re-evaluating which suppliers you will work or won’t work with in the future, how have you changed the way you work since the pandemic hit?
Our model hasn’t changed in terms of fees but we definitely want to work more with the amazing suppliers that helped us and other agencies throughout these crazy times.
How have you adjusted your business strategy over the past year?
We have diversified our offerings and are looking to re-charge our product knowledge and service to excel and be the best in our industry.
What’s your biggest piece of advice for travel advisors right now?
Stay positive! It’s so easy to get caught up in politics and recommendations. Our job is to provide the best information possible to our clients and not make the choice for them.