How to Host a Travel Night
Written by: Sydney M Crago on May 10, 2019
Hosting a travel night is one way that travel agents can showcase their knowledge and passion for travel to a captive audience. They can be an effective and fun way to boost business if done right. Before you host a travel night, know the answers to these questions so you can plan a memorable event that will leave guests eager to plan their next getaway with you!
What is the goal of the travel night?
A travel night is an event hosted by a travel agent where clients and those interested in travel are invited to learn about a destination or travel opportunity. These can be useful to establish your business and credibility on a local level, to branching out into new areas of travel, and to sell group space.
It is important that you set a personal goal for your event. You may have a certain number of bookings you want to walk away with. Perhaps you want a set number of people to attend. Maybe your goal is to spread awareness of your business to a new group of people, like a women’s group or reach local families through the little league organization.
What is your topic?
Your travel night should give people a specific reason to attend. Choosing a focused topic is important. Choose a destination that your audience is interested in and that you can answer questions about. For example, instead of a broad topic like Princess Cruises, focus in on Sailing to Alaska with Princess Cruises. Make sure to give your event a name that makes your topic clear.
What is the location?
Some agents may be comfortable hosting an event in their home. Other agents may want to host in a space they can access or rent, like a church, fire hall, library, or local clubhouse. Perhaps you choose a location to match your event’s topic. For example, hosting your event in an Italian restaurant sets the mood for your presentation about touring Italy.
To figure out a location that is right for your event, think about how many people are you expecting to attend. Do you need audio/video equipment to do a presentation? Is there a rental fee for using the location you are considering?
What is your budget?
This event is an investment in your business. While travel nights don’t have to expensive, there will be some costs including refreshments, snacks, door prizes, and thank-you gifts. You will probably also want printed materials to hand out and extra business cards to share. Set a budget to include all of these as well as rental fees for your location (if needed).
Where will you market the event?
Make sure that your clients and potential clients know about your event. It is best to begin promoting your travel night at least four weeks ahead. You can promote through printed flyers, newspaper ads, or email. You could also consider creating a Facebook event to let your followers know and encourage them to bring their friends.
Think about who you are hoping will attend your event. Consider who would book a vacation to the destination you are presenting on. For example, sailing to the Galapagos Islands may be more suited to luxury travelers than young families. Market your travel night in ways to appeal to attendees who are more likely to book the destination you will be discussing. Ask guests to RSVP so that you can plan for refreshments and ensure you have enough seating for everyone.
What to do at your travel night?
As guests arrive, have them sign in. Make sure to include space for them to provide their email and phone number so that you can add them to your contact list and follow up with them after the event. After your guests have had time to arrive, mingle, and enjoy some refreshments, ask everyone to settle in for a presentation. This is your chance to shine and share your expertise on event’s theme or topic. Make sure to end your presentation with a call to action to contact you about booking their travel.
Ask your attendees for questions. For those who can’t answer on the spot, be sure to note what their question was and let them know that you plan to follow up with answers.
How will you follow up with attendees?
After your event, be sure to follow-up with attendees. Some may have an interest in your event topic. Reaching out to them may convince them to book their trip. Others may have an interest in another area of travel. A follow-up email or call will give you the chance to share how you could help them plan a trip to the location of their dreams.
Don’t forget to post photos of your event on your business social media and thank your attendees for coming.
There’s no one way to host a travel night. With planning, you will set yourself up for success and be able to focus on your potential clients at the event and allow your enthusiasm to shine through! Have more questions about hosting a travel night? The KHM Travel Group team would love to help you learn how to plan your event.
Are you interested in starting your own travel business? KHM Travel Group is a leading host agency dedicated to supporting our agents as they begin and grow their businesses. To learn more fill out the form to the right or give our team a call at 1-888-611-1220.