I was lucky enough to start full-time employment in the cruising industry straight from college but then similar to many, took a break to have a family and concentrate upon other ventures.
However, I knew my passion was always in the cruise industry, I wanted something which would fit around my family providing the flexibility of working from home but also provide back-up business support in areas such as marketing and administration. A reputable, quality brand was important to me and therefore a GoCruise franchise seemed the ideal opportunity.
The whole process was straight forward yet thorough and with full details of the franchise I knew exactly what I was getting. Over the years I have built up my database through marketing and personal recommendations to provide a personal service to both new and repeat customers and had the opportunity to take stands at county shows, exhibitions and of course, undertaken numerous ship visits.
Now 5 years on, I still have the flexibility I wanted, together with Head Office support provided by a friendly team of cruise enthusiasts who are genuinely eager to support or always at the end of a phone.
"Because of the growth of GoCruise and the backing of Fred Olsen Travel who own the franchise, we are able to compete competitively in the market place with all the big boys."
“The franchise means I can combine my enthusiasm for travel with a business. With opportunities to visit ships and travel the world, I can build my knowledge along with my business.”
The Head Office team take care of all the administration leaving me to focus on building the business, selling, and looking after my customers. This ability to give the personal touch and customer service does make all the difference.
Having worked in the travel industry for a considerable amount of time, I have seen almost everything there is to see; from travelling to the Arctic, cruising along the River Amazon and exploring the Galapagos Islands; to flying in a light aircraft and swimming with sea lions! I was looking for a way forward in the industry and wanted to be my own boss.
After looking at the options, I joined GoCruise and was welcomed with open arms by Bridget Coe (Franchise Manager), Geoff Ridgeon (Head of Cruise) and the rest of the head office staff. It was nice to be acknowledged.
Since joining GoCruise, I've had some fantastic opportunities. I've been able to go to ship visits with Hebridean Princess and the conferences have been great. I’ve also been on Anthem of the Seas which was unlike anything else. If I had chosen to retire, I would never have had this opportunity.
Anyone who thinks they can work well in this market without some sales skills, particularly based on developing good relationships with people would be misguided. However, with an open mind to look for the positive in every situation you will have every chance of becoming successful.
GoCruise ticked all the boxes - ABTA bonding, flexibility to work any hours, to run my own business the way I wanted and a dedicated support team should I need any help.
We had a three day training course at Head Office. We learned about product knowledge, administration and the systems. They talk you through your own business and all the aspects of it, such as sales and marketing. They give you a good feel for that.