2020 - A Year for the record books
I have been writing this news-letter for going on 25 years.
We have seen the best of times and the worst of times. We have been through the closing of one location after 9/11, we have been through the recession in 2008 and we have seen a month with sales topping one million dollars— but nothing comes close to living through the pandemic of 2020. I can’t wait to be able to look back and say we weathered this storm as well, but right now the clouds are still out there and we are doing our best to get through the days. The one thing I know without a doubt is that we will get through this. As an agency, we are so blessed to be financially able to hang on, but it is certainly heartbreaking to watch a business you love as much as we all love this one just dry up!
Travel has been our passion for so long it is hard to fathom a life without it. Our April vacation to Annecy, Paris, and cruise with our kids from Venice to Barcelona was cancelled so we immediately rebooked for 2021. We just had to have something to look forward to in all this! Then our August cruise was cancelled so we again rebooked for fall of 2021.
When we first started cruising in the early 1980’s we planned a vacation every two years, then it went to 18 months, then once a year and for the past several years we have been out of the country 3 or 4 times a year. Now, without a vacation for over a year, I am relying heavily on the pictures we took and the memories we made over all our traveling years. I have never been a huge Facebook fan, but it sure is fun when it sends me a post that reminds me where we were one, two or three years ago.
We continue to be inspired by our many clients who feel as we do and can’t wait to get back to seeing the world. They brighten our days when we talk about where we want to go when the world opens up again. But for now we continue our quest to work with the cruise lines, air lines, tour operators etc. for your future cruise credits and or refunds. I have knit an entire pair of socks while on hold! When
this first started back in
March, there was no computer programing in place so every single thing needed to be done by phone. When I say hours on hold, I mean hours, and then the call would be dropped and we would start over. Then we would call the clients, give them the options and call the vendor back for another session of terminal hold!
I know many of you are waiting for refunds to be processed and I want to reassure you that it will happen. No one has ever had to deal with anything like this and the procedures were just not there to deal with it. Normally if someone cancels in full penalty, the computers are programmed for taxes go back to the client but that’s it. So, anything beyond that has to be manually calculated and processed. And while “you” are waiting, you need to realize there are hundreds of thousands of “yous” waiting for the same thing! Once the vendor completes their work it then goes to the credit card company where again, with the massive number of refunds to process, they are overwhelmed as well. I ask all of you to be patient, but know we are here checking our lists regularly, calling the cruise lines and tour operators on your behalf.
Stay strong, keep the faith, hang on...do whatever it takes to carry on until we can
look in the rear-view mirror at this pandemic! This too shall pass. Virtual hugs to all!