Today we’d like to introduce you to Justin Dolan.
So, before we jump into specific questions, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
From a very early age, I always wanted to travel. Growing up in a small town, the bright lights of the big city were calling me. A family friend owned a travel agency and took me to Europe when I was 13. I knew then that I would pursue a career that would allow me to travel the world. Starting as a ticket delivery person and working my way through various companies, I came to my current position as Director of Sales at CTA Travel. During my tenure, I have worked in nearly every facet of the Travel Advisor Industry. While many jobs bring financial enrichment, this industry has afforded me a lifetime of travel. In 2019, I visited my 100th country (Denmark) and continued to explore international as well as domestic destinations as often as possible.
Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Working as a Travel Advisor, your role is to navigate obstacles on your client’s behalf. This comes with daily obstacles such as flight delays, weather challenges and other travel inconveniences we are all too familiar with. 2020 has brought a new challenge. During the months of March, April and May most travel advisors saw nearly their entire year of business canceled. Processing these cancellations, advocating for clients, and securing refunds became more than a full-time job. As we currently wait for something to change, the challenge now is to stay engaged with our clients while most places around the world are shut down due to COVID-19. Having gone through 9/11 and the Financial Crisis I already had a strategy. Although the core of my business is bespoke international itineraries, I am currently focusing on closer to home destinations. Letting clients know that I can arrange their driving trip to Sedona or a Montana Ranch Experience, just as I would curate their more complex international journeys.
Please tell us about CTA Travel.
CTA Travel is part of the Act 1 Group, the largest privately held, minority-woman-owned personnel company founded in the U.S. Our CEO, Janice Bryant Howroyd, is most well known as being the first African American woman to build and own a billion dollar company. She has taught us to “never compromise who you are personally to become who you wish to be professionally.” This philosophy has guided my career.
I oversee a staff of expert travel advisors with specialties ranging from corporate travel, luxury vacations, cruises and custom group travel. I truly enjoy wearing different hats through these very different market segments. My personal specialty is concierge-style luxury travel planning. I focus on knowing my clients’ preferences, travel history and expectations to help them make the best choices in travel. As I foster client relationships over years, I am able to anticipate all my clients’ needs so they never have to worry if a car service is booked, dietary requirements have been noted, or family assistants are copied on an itinerary. My goal is to become a complete resource for all things travel related in one’s life.
CTA Travel is well regarded in the travel industry maintaining excellent relationships with major hotel companies, smaller independent properties, airlines, cruise lines and a select catalog of destination specialists. We leverage these relationships to bring the most value and benefit to our guests. No reservation is handled solely by automation so guests feel a personal touch on arrival.
I am most proud of the lifelong memories I create. While I can be busy and caught up in the pace of a bustling career, I have to take pause and remember that details I’m working on are often part of someone’s much deserved holiday, honeymoon or special celebration. This was demonstrated to me last year when a very dear friend and client passed away. At his funeral most all the speakers sharing thoughts on their time with him included stories from trips I had planned. I am so fortunate to play a small part in these memories.
Do you look back particularly fondly on any memories from childhood?
When I was about ten years old, I went on my very first cruise. It was a weekend trip to Ensenada, Mexico. At the time, this cruise to me was the height of luxury! I remember wearing a tuxedo, trying escargot, and staying up for the midnight buffet. While my tastes and travel desires have changed over the years, I try to look at my own trips as well as clients’ travels with that same sense of wonder.
- Address: 13291 South St
Cerritos, CA 90703
- Website: www.ctatravel.com
- Phone: 5628659516
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: justin2travel