Hey, it's Denise!
Managing Director, Canada, Uplift
What do you miss most about travelling?
Honestly, just about everything — I am even feeling nostalgic for airports… This is definitely the longest I’ve stayed in one place in many years and I truly miss the ability to travel for both work and pleasure. I would love to see some of the Uplift team live — most of our team is based in the US so a trip to our head office California is on my mind. Overall though, what I think I miss most about travel is its restorative powers. R and R is always welcome but moreover, I have my best ideas and reflection when I step out of my daily life, so really missing the ability to experience different environments, meet new people and see things from a different viewpoint, both literally and figuratively.
Where’s the first place you want to go and why?
I’ll likely to go Mexico first (my home away from home) as I had a trip planned to visit the Playa Del Carmen area and was scheduled to leave at the end of March. I was so looking forward to that vacation and of course, I had to postpone so definitely keen to do that. I was also planning to visit South Africa this year for the first time and hoping to make that happen as well.
How have you been coping during the last few months and how have you been keeping busy?
Overall coping very well but I definitely am missing people and would love to go out for a nice dinner. I have been keeping very busy with work, finishing a lot of projects, and working to secure and onboard new clients. Lots of video calls! On a personal level, I have been fine-tuning my cooking skills, enjoying lots of reading and Netflix, and now that the weather is nice, spending a considerable amount of time in my garden. Pulling weeds is quite therapeutic! I am just so happy to be able to spend time outdoors. It was a very long winter…
“The knowledge and expertise of travel advisors will be invaluable. We will all need to share in the responsibility of stimulating the market and encouraging clients to travel through our varied tools and means. I do believe that those that are quick to adapt and seize opportunities will benefit.”
Managing Director, Canada Uplift
Is there anything agents should know about Uplift and what the future holds?
We have been working diligently to enhance our offerings with our current partners, while concurrently onboarding some significant new ones. So all in all feeling very fortunate as we are weathering the crisis and are laser-focused on coming out the other side of this strong and ready. As we edge toward the return to business I see Uplift as an important tool for our partners and a great benefit for clients. Our mission is to make travel more accessible, affordable and rewarding for travellers — this was our tag line (pre-Covid) but interestingly I think it resonates even more now. We can help an advisor or supplier convert a shopper to a confirmed booking and we can also help clients plan and budget, or perhaps even provide access to travel that they might not have had otherwise. The response from our partners has been incredible. They are all working fiercely behind the scenes to not just ensure the survival and health of their companies but to bring more offerings and more flexibility to their clients.
There’s been a lot of talk about the industry coming out better on the other side of COVID-19. What are your hopes?
Above all, I hope that we can all travel safely soon and that those in our industry that have been furloughed are called back to work. We are beginning to see some signs of life so I am feeling cautiously optimistic. I don’t know if we can define what the other side will look like just yet, but I do think it’s safe to say we will be dealing with a changed industry. I truly believe that there will be many opportunities in the near future but we will all be required to adapt — re-think our offerings, stay to close to our client base, work together as an industry to provide safe environments. The knowledge and expertise of travel advisors will be invaluable. We will all need to share in the responsibility of stimulating the market and encouraging clients to travel through our varied tools and means. I do believe that those that are quick to adapt and seize opportunities will benefit.
Do you have anything to add?
Only that I miss being able to spend time with our travel community and can’t wait until we can all get together again — preferably in a beautiful destination. In the meantime, I wish everyone good health.