“Experience: that most brutal of teachers. 
But you learn, my God do you learn.” 
~ CS Lewis

How did our experts get so good? 
Experience and lots of it! 

Here are a few stories from our seasoned advisors about valuable lessons learned when things went awry…


Julie Tourville

One thing’s for sure is if you buy a new camera for your trip make sure you do so about 3 to 4 months prior and USE it and TEST it out for weeks.

About 30 years ago I went on a wonderful fam trip to French Alps – Mont Blanc ski area.   This was when the Canon AE-1 was all the rage with the drop in film canister that you had to reel around.

I unfortunately THOUGHT I had the film all wrapped around right and was snapping pics away!!! Finally after about 5 days of this I realized that I had not secured the film and and had NO pics.

I was devastaed as the trip was over.   From that time on I made sure I know how to use whatever camera BEFORE I left on trip.

3 years ago I went on Safari to Africa and purchased a new digital camera that I practiced with for 3 months and got the most WONDERFUL shots during the whole trip.

Live and learn as they say.


Dennis Wallace

My clients’ flight was delayed, putting them into Amsterdam a day late. They wanted to go to the hotel that was already booked and paid by the tour operator, but they did not call me, they called the transfer company to see if they could still be taken to the hotel first before going on to the ship and were told No; they would have to go directly to the ship. 

When I got their email stating this unhappy news, they thought this decision was the last word, I called and got it straightened out so they did indeed get taken first to the hotel to freshen up and chill before going later to the ship.

Try to first call your travel advisor for help and direction. They can be your best resource for getting things correct. Utilize your travel advisor; they can help you in so many ways!


Annie Rogers

Recently a nice young man and his lovely fiancé came into my office to discuss planning their honeymoon. As we conversed, I couldn’t help but think of Willie from Duck Dynasty as his beard was long and bushy and he definitely had a rugged outdoor confidence to him . Soon enough, we had settled on an all inclusive resort in Mexico for their first trip as a couple and first trip ever out of the country.

When they returned, I called to check on them. I wanted to know if they had had a wonderful time and /or if there had been any problems. 

He began his story…….

“Well, when I got my passport a few months before the wedding, my beard was short and clean. In the months leading up to the wedding, I had progressively grown it out to Duck Dynasty perfection. When we arrived in Mexico, I soon realized how hot Mexico was and the beard became unbearable so I shaved it off. Our honeymoon went well and we returned to the US.

Here came the issue….customs. The officer kept looking from me to his screen to my passport picture. We were taken aside for interrogation. Apparently such changes in beard length or lack of beard altogether are indicative of either terrorist or imposter. Moral of the story …..shave the beard before departure to an extremely hot country and save yourself hours of interrogation!!!!”