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Meet Ed Postal of International Travel Planners

Today we’d like to introduce you to Ed Postal.

Ed, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
In 1991 a friend who was unhappy working for a travel agency asked me to start one so she could work for me. Not knowing much about the travel industry, I did research and set up an agency in Irvine with a manager and 5 agents. In 1993, I sold the agency and decided that it would be a much better idea to work by myself using a host agency. After trying a few different ones, last year I found Luxe Travel which is a Signature Agency and it has been an excellent match as my focus is and always has been on Luxury leisure travel.

Knowledge is of primary importance and to this end I have taken specialist courses from most cruise lines, hotel groups and destinations. I have also been to over 70 countries and territories and have sailed on over 35 cruises. This gives me the ability to give my clients the information needed to experience very special trips.

Has it been a smooth road?
Having the full-service agency with employees created a lot of pressure and problems such as employees embezzling money, and client using credit cards without authorization. Over the years it was a learning experience to ind what type of clients and what type of trips are worthwhile to work with.

So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the International Travel Planners story. Tell us more about the business.
I chose now to work by myself but use Luxe Travel Management as a host agency. I work 100% on leisure travel with the emphasis on luxury. I put together trips for my clients primarily in areas that I know best, such as Europe where I have been over 60 times, The Caribbean where I have been to almost every island and most of them more than twice, Africa and the south Pacific. Both ocean and river cruises is also a major part of my business. Because I specialize in primarily the areas that I know so well and do not take on masses of clients, I can spend the time needed to truly give my clients first class service before, during and after their trip. I am a true consultant not an agent

How do you think the industry will change over the next decade?
I think that the industry has mad most of its big shifts and changed in the past few years. The biggest changes which we are seeing now and will continue is the constant mergers and buyouts of hotel chains and air lines.

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