A&K has been one of the premier luxury travel companies in the world for some years now. As members of their exclusive top producers 100 Club, TravelStore attended their annual meeting, hearing from executives and product managers from around the world, and networking with fellow agents. This year’s engaging meeting, held at the excellent Trump International in Chicago last week, included managers from India, Morocco, Australia, Southeast Asia, Kenya, China, Italy Ecuador and Peru, updating A&K’s best agencies on what’s new in their regions of the world. We also had a chance to meet “the private team”, our agency’s direct contacts, selected to work only with key accounts like TravelStore.
A key theme has been that while the struggling economy has had an impact on all businesses, people are still traveling. More importantly, it’s not that they’re just going “to go” or to “get away”, but they’re traveling seeking enrichment, something A&K excels at. (It’s sometimes hard to get a customer to appreciate the value of paying more for a trip when the value they’ll receive is so intangible, as in the quality of the tour guides and enrichment they’ll receive.) Safety was also discussed as a key concern of travelers, and as one of the world’s top tour companies with offices and staff around the world, safety is an issue A&K has always taken seriously.
A&K has been diversifying it’s excellent programs for years, and in addition its escorted tours and custom travel arrangements, the company has a large investment in family programs, lower-priced Discovery programs, women’s tours and extreme adventures, as well as in its wide-ranging philanthropic programs. Noted among the fastest growing destinations for A&K this year are Israel, Morocco, Rwanda and Vietnam.