ARC MarketPlace Agent Spotlight: Meet Cari Romero of Gindroz and Company
Cari Romero started her career in the mortgage industry, but in 2010, after a series of unfortunate events, her path changed – for the better. The housing market crashed and at the same time, a volcano erupted in Iceland, causing major disruption in European travel. Romero’s sister was working at Gindroz and Company and had clients stranded, so Romero volunteered to help out by answering phones. She enjoyed working for the agency and decided to join as a full-time travel advisor.
Romero has been with Gindroz and Company for seven years now. I caught up with her recently to learn more about her story.
Location: Temecula, CA
Role: Travel Advisor
Agency Type: Wholesale European Tour Operator
Recent Travel Destination: Italy – Rome, Florence, and Venice
Bucket List Travel Destination(s): Germany, France, and Austria
Years Using ARC MarketPlace: 2 years
Do you specialize in any areas of the world or specific types of travel?
Gindroz and Company specializes in custom European travel for free, independent travelers. We are currently branching out to South America as well. I book various types of personalized travel and vacations including groups, families, honeymoons and business trips.
How do you stay organized when planning a lot of trips at once?
Each customer’s trip is fully customized, so we pay close attention to make sure they are all handled individually. Each trip is filed in a folder, and I try to just focus on one file at a time. We have an internal program as well that helps with documents and final payments.
Is there a trend you’ve seen in the market that you think will impact future travel?
I have seen travel increasing to Croatia. We have been getting many more requests to plan trips there. A lot of times you hear there is a new television series or documentary on a certain country, and that inspires people to want to visit the destination. The same goes with negative events, such as terrorist attacks – people are then concerned with where they should not go.
How do you use ARC MarketPlace?
I use ARC MarketPlace to book activities instead of going directly to suppliers, especially for activities or tours that fill up quickly. The site works well for our clients that have a more limited budget or are interested in small group tours.
Are there any go-to products that are popular for your clients?
We often book the Eiffel Tower skip-the-line tour, which comes with entrance and tickets included and is really hard for clients to get on their own. The Vatican skip-the-line tour is popular as well. I also book a lot of tours going from Florence around Tuscany, where clients stop at a farmhouse for lunch and wine.
What is your favorite thing about ARC MarketPlace?
I like everything about ARC MarketPlace. I love the convenience of booking online. With detailed tour descriptions and vouchers confirmed on the spot, booking is easy, and prices for the products are competitive as well. ARC MarketPlace allows me to make commission on products I otherwise wouldn’t have had access to purchasing.
Do you have any advice for new travel agents?
Google was my best friend when I started. A lot of tourism boards offer courses, which give you the ins and outs of the land. Switzerland has a great program! Tourism boards are also our go-to if we have a question. They’re always happy to help and have a lot of resources available for agents.