A Nuts-and-bolts look behind the scenes of our bookings
Dispatch from Melanie Segnorile, IWorld of Travel Destination Expert
I custom-designed a trip to Havana, Cuba for three travelers in December. The trip was to take place in less than a week from the time I received the booking inquiry from their travel advisor. It was Monday, they were leaving on Friday so I really needed to get everything confirmed in 48 hrs. to give clients their documents in an orderly manner.
Initial Itinerary Info
- Due to the tight time frame of having to execute the itinerary in a 48-hour window, I needed to know exactly what the clients wanted to see and do.
- I spoke with the travel advisor to determine what types of hotels and activities the travelers expect.
- This was the clients’ second trip to Cuba and they were interested in culture and art.
- I knew it would be tricky to get all the services confirmed in time, but as problematic as travel to Cuba may seem, working with partners who have deep local knowledge helps overcome obstacles and makes things happen. Being bilingual in Spanish, I was able to relate the clients’ wishes with no language barrier.
- Visas can be a problem when there’s a time crunch but since the clients were flying out of Miami, they were able to obtain their visas at the airport. And since they were traveling with authorized tours—a requirement for permission to travel to Cuba—they traveled worry free.
- Since the clients were arriving and touring on the weekend, I had to check operating hours at the sites to ensure the tours were doable. I communicated back and forth with our partners in country for accurate service information
- I created a customized art tour for a #memoriesbeyond experience
- Day 1: Arrival in Havana
- Day 2: Hemingway Tour
- Tour the Hemingway Villa (Finca Vigia) where he wrote many of his books, his favorite fishing village (Cojimar), and his favorite hangout in Havana (La Bodeguita del Medio)
- Day 3: Havana Art Studio – Fusterlandia – Art School – Departure
- 10:30 Visit to the artists’ studios and meet the artists
- 11:30 Tour the house and studio of renowned Cuban artist Jose Fuster
- 13:45 Panoramic Ride around the Int. School of Art, depicted in the film “Unfinished Spaces”
Meals: Breakfasts and lunch
Hotel: Hotel Nacional de Cuba
Price: $1773 USD per person
Traveling to Cuba from the US is not a scary thing. Politics aside, it’s a country full of culture and lovely people. Travelers should be open-minded and not miss out!
Travel Advisor Testimonial:
“Had a GREAT time…We got a big thank you for putting it together so quickly. Thanks SO much to you!!”