Based in Bryanston

Kerith Hulme

Looking for help with your business travel? Find out how I can help here

It's Nice To Meet You

Hi and a warm welcome to the future of your travels!

My name is Kerith, and I am looking forward to working with you to create incredible travel memories. I am proudly South African and work fom my home in leafy Bryanston - although with the technology at my fingertips, I am able to assist you no matter where in the world you may be based.

I am a certified travel addict, and after 18 years in the corporate events and incentives industry, I decided to take the leap to launch my own travel business in 2019. I take great pride in exceeding the expectations of my clients, and love having the ability to help people travel the world. If you're wondering how booking with an agent could be better than online - let's set up a call! There are so many benefits to working through a professional - not least of which is taking the stress off you and enjoying a care-free holiday where everything has been thought of for you.

With parents who taught me the joys of travel from before I could walk, it's no surprise that I love what I do so much. I knew for a fact that I wanted to work in travel on the second day of a Contiki tour in 2006 - I came home, cancelled the balance of my Law Degree (after completing my Honours in Biochemistry of all things!) and went back to Europe where I spent four years working as a Tour Manager. Learning the history and culture of the continent started my passion for the travel industry - I thrive on nerdy energy and opening the eyes of my clients to the wonders of the world.

Although it took family and friends by surprise when I announced that I was launching my own travel business back in 2019, I have never looked back and wouldn't change it! Travel for me was a life choice - it's not just a job to me.

I specialize in group travel, complex bespoke itineraries, safari and luxury trips, although I am able to assist you with anything from a local roadtrip to a simple flight. Along with my team of similarly passionate Travel Counsellors, we are able to help you with whatever you may require. I believe that luxury in travel means that everything is taken care of for you, and it doesn't mean that you necessarily have to spend a fortune.

My personal travel has taken me to 51 countries so far, but my special passion is Europe - France and the Balkan region in particular. I love finding insider tips and secret spots from around the world and sharing these with clients to enhance their experience!

My travel philosophy is that of the Asian proverb, "It is better to see something once than to hear about it a thousand times."

Let me help you see the world!

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Top tips for using Greek ferries

13 June 2023

I recently enjoyed a trip to Athens, Mykonos and Santorini, and we used ferries between all of the islands. Greek ferries can be a bit daunting but they are so efficient and easy to use! So here are a few tips for using them! Always book tickets in advance – the ferries fill up quickly and especially on some routes, are limited. And if you get queasy on the water take a sea-sickness tablet about 2 hours before the ferry. Although the bigger ferries are very stable, the faster ferries (like SeaJets) can be quite choppy! Always be punctual. Ferries in Greece generally leave on time, so make sure you arrive at least 30 minutes before departure to avoid missing your ferry. That being said, Greek ferries tend to start on time at their first port, and get gradually more behind schedule as the day goes on - so in the afternoon you can expect slight delays. But still be on time! Be patient... I cannot stress this enough. This is a massive industry and whilst it may feel a little chaotic, this is just how it is done. There is a lot of order in the chaos - even if you cannot feel it at first. Ferries get busy, especially during peak travel season. Be prepared for long lines and crowded ferries. Be sure to get off at the right island! A lot of the routes stop at several islands, but an announcement will be made on arrival at each one, and there are screens showing the ferry's progression that you can keep an eye on. In most cases you will have an assigned seat number - when you first board, check where your seat is, and then you can move through the ferry freely. Some ferries have business class lounges for a premium - these have to be pre-booked though so if you have a standard ticket you will not be able to access the lounge. Generally on arrival at the port, you will be able to ask the Port Authority what gate or port your ferry will arrive at – you will see the ferry as it arrives. Trucks, cars and cargo load first, and the passengers on-board will disembark before new passengers can board. Have your ticket ready to show the staff on board - either an e-ticket or a printed ticket from the ferry company office. They may ask for a passport but don’t generally. Have it handy just in case! Your luggage will be stowed on the first deck that you walk onto – staff will show you where to leave it and it's generally safe. Keep valuables on you and anything you may need on the ferry ride itself, as you will not be able to access your luggage during the trip. When you disembark, you will simply collect your luggage and walk off the ferry to explore your new surrounds. A lot of the larger ferries have multiple snack shops, restaurants and shops on board, but the smaller ferries are quite limited - and pricey. But you can easily buy a few things at a local supermarket and take them on board! And enjoy the trip - Greece's islands are known for their stunning scenery, so take advantage of the opportunity to enjoy the views during your ferry ride. And most importantly - don't panic! If you are unsure of anything at all, ask the staff - they may be busy but they genuinely do want to help you so be patient and friendly and someone will assist you.

A quick guide to using Italian trains

01 June 2023

I've just come back from an awesome few weeks in Italy and thought a quick guide on using trains would be helpful! Italy has a well-connected train system that provides a convenient, affordable, and efficient way to travel around the country. Here's how you to use trains in Italy: TICKETS • It's best to buy tickets in advance, especially for high-speed trains and long-distance journeys. Trains are very popular in Italy and the chances of getting a ticket decrease as your date of travel gets closer • If you have a paper ticket, before boarding the train, validate your ticket at the yellow machines located on the platform.You only need to validate tickets for regional trains, not fast trains, and even then you only need to validate hard copy tickets bought at a station, not tickets bought online. • If you have an e-ticket, be sure that you have a copy available for the conductor who will carry out spot checks on the train for tickets AT THE STATION • Arrive at the train station with at least 20 minutes before departure for regional, or 40 minutes for inter-city trains. Don't worry about long security lines, but give yourself time to check the electronic boards which display the train numbers and their corresponding platform (or bin./binario in Italian). • At stations, finding your platform and train is no different from finding your gate and plane at an airport. Signs are usually in English as well as Italian, and on high-speed trains, announcements are usually repeated in English. • It helps to know Italian city names: Rome = Roma, Florence = Firenze, Venice = Venezia, Naples = Napoli, Milan = Milano, Turin = Torino, Genoa = Genova. • Partenze are departures in Italian, and Arrivi are arrivals. Find your train number under the Partenze column to ensure that you go to the correct platform (binario) for your departure. It's important to note that the Partenze will display the final destination of the train - so if you are traveling from Florence to Rome, your train might actually keep going to Naples – so Napoli will show on the board. • If you keep watching, all of the stops will scroll by in the smaller letters next to the main destination. This should help put you at ease, but you really can’t go wrong if you focus on the train number (usually 4 digits) and the departure time - check your ticket for this. ON THE TRAIN • It's easier to board your pre-assigned carriage (on longer trains where seats are pre-booked). The carriage numbers are clearly visible either on the side of the train or on an electronic sign on the door. (But if your train is about to depart – just get on! You can find the right seat after it leaves). • You don't need to check your bags in and there is no baggage car. You simply take whatever you like into the train with you, and stick your bags on the racks above your head or on the big luggage racks at the end of each car. If these are full, use the space between the seat backs, wherever there is a gap. On regional trains, it just goes on the floor next to you if there aren't any racks. Getting onto the train early helps if you do have a lot of luggage. Don't over-think it, as luggage really doesn't need worrying about, other than not travelling with more than you really need. • Enjoy the ride! Trains in Italy are comfortable and equipped with amenities such as air conditioning, restrooms, and food and drink service on some trains. However, feel free to bring your own food and drink (even a bottle of wine, if you like) onto the train, there's no rules against that on the rails! • Feel free to relax, but keep your arrival time in mind. Most trains in Italy make multiple stops, so set an alarm for 10 minutes before your scheduled arrival time just to be sure you are alert when it is time to get off the train! • Pay attention to announcements and arrival times to ensure you get off at the right station. And remember to have fun! Italian trains are a great way to get around this gorgeous country!

Magoebaskloof – good for the soul

24 August 2020

Joburgers tend to look towards either the bush or the Midlands when considering a short break, both of which are easily within a three and a bit hours’ drive. Of course, there are also the smaller towns of Clarens and Dullstroom too, which are always popular for crafts, fishing, hiking and mountain biking. This weekend I decided to explore another small-town option, with big air feels: Limpopo province’s Magoebaskloof. I set off on a Sunday morning (working for yourself has some benefits) and took the N1 until it became called, rather excitingly, the Great North Road. The drive is easy, on this huge highway that stretches between Zimbabwe’s border and Cape Town. Tolls do add up, so be aware of their cost, but in general time flew by as my little car ate up the kilometers and I sang badly to old rock songs. Around Polokwane the route deviates from the N1, and it passes the fascinating Zion Church’s Moria spiritual base. I had a very interesting chat with a local waiter about the church’s origins, and how it has grown to a membership of almost ten million across the country. In this area you’ll see plenty of roadside vendors with Coke bottles filled with a milk substance, and bunches of a gorse-like shrub. I found out that these are all to do with a cleansing ceremony that the church espouses. Learning about the area I’m traveling through adds so much to the experience! You start to notice the climbing as you head through these hills, and suddenly around Kromdraai you can see the yawning valleys below you – green slopes, flower farms, blue gum plantations… it’s all about wide open spaces and a feeling of space around here. The road passes into a forest reserve area, and then you wind your way down to the little village of Haenertsburg, on onwards to Magoebaskloof. There are several accommodation options in the area. I stayed at the beautiful Bramasole Guest House, which is one of the most spectacularly striking properties I’ve ever seen. An old angora rabbit warehouse converted into an industrial chic guesthouse, set on the shores of a tranquil dam lined with soaring eucalyptus trees – I mean come on, could it be prettier! Each of the units has a small kitchenette, making this a perfect base from which to explore the area at a leisurely pace. Bramasole is a mid-priced option and has a four-star rating. It is excellent value for money, especially the free-standing cottages which offer privacy and tranquility on the far side of the dam from the main building. They offer lots of the small touches that I love in an owner-run property, like wheat bags to microwave and keep your toes warm. I’ll be back for sure! There is also the charming Magoebaskloof Hotel, with 63 rooms. It has the feel of an old country resort, and probably the best view in the area – it definitely worth stopping in for a drink on the deck to enjoy the views! They offer incredible value for money, with self-catering apartment rooms for 5 people, deluxe garden rooms, and standard rooms. The hotel pool and deck chairs look like they would be the best place to recover after a long day exploring this stunning area. Plus they have excited new management who have great ideas on modernising the hotel and property! Although I spent only two nights in Magoebaskloof with a half day of exploring, I loved it and would plan to spend at least five days next time! There are plentiful hiking and mountain biking trails, blueberry farms, trout fishing dams, and even an award-winning local brewery. Definitely a fantastic option from Joburg – would love to help you plan the perfect local stay in Magoebaskloof!

Tips for the Best Roadtrip Ever

02 July 2020

Who doesn’t love a good road trip – the open road stretching ahead of you, your favourite people in the car with you, some good tunes, and some tasty snacks? Sounds like my idea of heaven! But it’s been a while for most of us since we were last able to take a leisurely road trip to some far-off destination, so here are a few reminders of important points when planning any long drive. First of all, make sure to run your car through a simple safety check. You need to be certain that after a while of standing parked up, your car is ready to move you safely. Most vehicle service centres will offer this at a low cost, and they will check important items such as your tyres, your oil, fluids, battery and lights. You should also check that you have a safety triangle, basic medical aid kit, and a correctly pressured spare wheel with its associated tools. Of course, you will need your driver’s license and any additional drivers who may take the wheel should have theirs easy to reach too. As lockdown regulations change, paperwork such as travel permits may be required, and you should be sure to have a copy of these on hand too! Don’t forget to have your car washed too before you leave – not only does the fresh smell and clean interior look and smell good, it’s also a good way to make sure that the windows and windscreen are clean so that visibility is good, and gives you a chance to check for cracks and damage to the windscreen wipers. As the trip proceeds, be sure at every opportunity to purge your car of undesirable rubbish. Even if you can tolerate a little mess, the accumulated junk will start to drive you (or maybe your more OCD companions) mad in the close quarters that define a road trip. It’s also super important to make sure you have planned your route! Seems simple, but so many people do not do this. It creates unnecessary tension if there is a dispute about the route and being prepared means that any unforeseen deviations will stress you out less. Remember too that if you are planning on using an online map service (such as Google Maps), you need to download your route in advance so that if you travel through any areas with no signal you do not lose access to the map. Of course, depending on your schedule, if you have a bit of flexibility it’s always nice to allow slight deviations from the planned route – to stop in and see a small town or natural wonder that your route may pass by. And if you really are on a road trip to enjoy the open road, try to leave the highway as much as you can – some of my favourite travel memories in South Africa have been when we have done just this! If you are travelling with youngsters, make sure you have plenty of road trip entertainment lined up for them. We used to mark a piece of paper with “Start” and “Finish” and then mark little notches at significant points during the journey… it helped my folks deal with endless “Are we there yet” questions! Even if the road trip crew is not made up of kids, plan a little entertainment – even if just in the form of an epic road trip playlist. I think I could write an entire post about road trip music (so I will), but in general you are looking for easy going, middle of the road music that everyone in the car will enjoy. There is nothing worse than a music hog who shares no musical taste with anyone else on the trip! And of course, don’t forget the charger for all of your devices – and a battery pack if the vehicle doesn’t have a USB connection or similar charger. Remember that the driver needs to be cared for, so ensure that you have some easy to nibble snacks, water and maybe a bottle of Coke for them. The passenger should generally assist with navigation, music, temperature and entertainment for co-passengers. Pack a few pillows for resting heads against the windows, and don’t forget a jersey for each person in case the air conditioning is a bit chilly for your taste. Most importantly – road-tripping is a chance to live by the famous words of Ralph Waldo Emerson, who said “Life is a journey, not a destination”. Sit back, admire the beauty of our country, and just enjoy the experience. Get in touch if I can help plan or inspire your next road trip!

My Top 15 South African beaches

08 June 2020

With over 2500 km of coastline, South Africa is blessed with beaches of all types, making it tough to choose, but in honor of World Ocean Day, here are my picks: KWAZULU-NATAL 1. Sodwana Bay Sodwana is known for long stretches of sands, and a relaxed atmosphere. All beachgoers will find something to love here, from sunbathing and snorkelling to deep-sea fishing. Diving is the year-round drawcard, thanks to the warm waters and numerous species of fish and sharks – even the incredibly rare coelacanth has been spotted here. 2. Cape Vidal Cape Vidal's beach, accessible by winding sandy roads through a national park, is a long strip of soft sand at the base of stretching sand dunes. The area is visited by humpback whales, as well as sea-turtles visiting to nest. Other marine visitors include the huge whale shark, marlin, sailfish, and dolphins – often seen leaping joyously out of the waters just off the beach. 3. Christmas Bay For those that enjoy the north coast but prefer quieter beaches, Christmas Bay is perfect. This beach retains a touch of wilderness, with many rock pools and a sheltered cove for gentle wallows. It’s also a great spot for toddlers and small children, who are endlessly entertained by the sea life in the pools that line the beach as the tide recedes. 4. Umhlanga Beach I couldn’t possibly leave this wildly popular beach off a list of our best beaches! Umhlanga offers nearly year-round good weather, and a series of long white beaches that offer some of the country’s best swimming, sunbathing, and people-watching. With a promenade that is ideal for jogging or walking, and beautiful sunsets, Umhlanga is the very definition of a beach-destination. EASTERN CAPE 5. Mdumbi Lying in the remote Transkei region of the Eastern Cape, this magnificent beach has a secluded, untouched allure, with rolling white sands and warm waters. With a wide river mouth and a gorgeous long stretch of flat beach, this is the ultimate beach paradise. Spending the day on the beach with almost no one else for hours is not unusual, as only the locals know of its powdery sand and perfect surf conditions. 6. Cintsa The two little villages of Cintsa East and Cintsa West straddle a river mouth that leads to a wonderfully long magnificent stretch of beach. There are a few small shops and a local beach bar, but nature predominates, with most of the town lying behind coastal shrubbery, leaving the unspoiled beaches feeling like a little piece of paradise 7. Birha This beach is situated within a nature reserve and is backed by rolling sand dunes and a typical Eastern Cape river mouth. This slice of paradise offers fantastic kayaking, angling and swimming, with the lagoon offering safe and sheltered waters while the beach offers more than 10km of uninterrupted beach sands. 8. Maitland Mouth Just outside Port Elizabeth, the Maitland River emerges from dense indigenous coastal forest, with abundant birdlife and small animals, onto kilometres of endless sandy beach. The huge sand dunes offer plenty of adventure activities, including tobogganing, sand boarding and hang-gliding. Beautiful rock formations and incredible unspoilt beauty is further enhanced by the shimmering blue of the water, but despite this, it is never crowded and the natural beauty seldom disturbed. 9. Nature’s Valley Another pristine but popular Eastern Cape spot, Nature’s Valley has managed to remain relatively undiscovered despite its beautiful beach. This peaceful bay lies on the coast of the Tsitsikamma forest, where a small village offers its inhabitants residence in this beachfront paradise. There are many scenic walks and hikes, although if you are not feeling adventurous just lazing back on the beach offers plenty of enjoyment too. 10. Lookout Beach Plettenberg Bay and its famous Lookout Beach serve up seemingly-endless stretches of white sandy beaches and warm Indian Ocean waters, a stone’s throw from the affluent town. This is a great spot to while away the hours on the warm sands or to jump in the refreshing waves. Whales and even killer whales frequent the coastline seasonally, and dolphins can be seen year-round. WESTERN CAPE 11. Scarborough Scarborough beach impresses instantly, with towering mountains surrounding it and vast endless ocean stretching out from the sandy shores. Multiple rockpools await exploring, and surfers love the cascading waves that roll in from the chilly ocean. The beach is never crowded, and retains a feeling of openness and space, with plenty of kites being flown, balls being tossed, and laughs to be heard. 12. Llandudno Llandudno is a personal favourite – far enough out of Cape Town to feel like the city is a million stresses away. Steep stairs lead down from the coastal road towards the boulder-lined dramatic little beach, and the lack of beachside cafes or vendors adds to the Robinson Crusoe feeling of this Cape Town darling. 13. Camps Bay Camps Bay has it all – stylish cafes and wine bars, elaborate villas, luxury hotels, and life-altering sunsets. Add to that a perfect stretch of beach, a palm-fringed promenade, some beautiful people, and you have yourself the perfect trendy beach destination. It is one of the most visually stunning beach destinations in the world. 14. Paternoster Another favourite of mine, Paternoster lies in the midst of the West Coast Atlantic Park. This fishing town offers a combination of striking blue water, brightly painted boats, and stark whitewashed cottages. The shallow bay offers great swimming for those brave enough to venture into the freezing waters, and the cafes and restaurants are perfect for a hot chocolate for those who prefer to observe rather than dip their toes! This is my next beach destination – I’m looking forward to seeing those blue waters from the deck of my favourite beachside spot – with a nice glass of red of course! NORTHERN CAPE 15. Port Nolloth Here, the changing of the tide and the sweep of the sun across the sky are the only timekeepers, and the stresses of city living are left far behind. Warm stretches of inviting sand, small waves and rock pools promise relaxing days and peaceful evenings. There are big reefs in front of most of Port Nolloth’s beaches, meaning stunning marine life, which is a delight to explore with your snorkel and goggles. The rest of the coastline comprises pristine beaches, where one can enjoy beaches that stretch as far as one can see, cool Atlantic waters, and the song of the gulls.

FEEL INTERNATIONAL, STAY LOCAL SERIES! If you’re keen on Miami, try Camps Bay!

04 June 2020

Miami, and South Beach in particular, is renowned for powdery white beaches, palm-tree lined boulevards, and azure blue waters. The crowd is gorgeous, the weather fine, and the vibe is right on-trend. If you’ve got Miami on your bucket list, why not stay local and head to Cape Town’s Camps Bay beach? Camps Bay has it all – stylish cafes and wine bars, elaborate villas, luxury hotels, and life-altering sunsets. Add to that a perfect stretch of beach, a palm-fringed promenade, some beautiful people, and you have yourself the perfect trendy beach destination – right here in South Africa. Here are my top five reasons to visit Camps Bay: 1. Gorgeous beach(es) Camps Bay is the largest and most popular beach in the area, but just around the corner are Clifton’s four sheltered beaches, Bakoven’s striking boulders, and the local-favourites of Maiden’s Cove and Glen Beach. With all of these options for beach-bums, Camps Bay is the ideal base – whether you enjoy lazing on a lounger, tossing a volleyball, or dipping into the (icy) water. There is even a tidal pool for those keen to get a proper swim in! 2. Epic sunsets Ask any local where to see the best sunsets in Cape Town and they are sure to suggest Camps Bay. Whether from the deck of a chic café, the sands of the beach itself, or one of the luxurious hotels or villas in the affluent suburb, a Camps Bay sunset is a must-see for your next trip to Cape Town! 3. Scenic eateries and bars If, like me, food and wine are always at the back of your mind, Camps Bay will not disappoint! The entire length of the beach is lined with a variety of bars, cafés and restaurants. From popular franchises to sophisticated fine dining, almost every cuisine that you can imagine is available. My personal recommendation is to follow up your dinner with a gourmet gelato from Gelato Mania in the Promenade Centre! And once the sun has gone down over the ocean, the strip becomes the ultimate spot for a cocktail. Rub shoulders with local celebs at the legendary Café Caprice or follow the buzz to many other places that offer your cocktail of choice. 4. Magnificent mountain backdrop Unlike many famous beaches around the world, Camp’s Bay is surrounded by the stunning foothills of the Twelve Apostles and Table Mountain, framing the beach beautifully with their shades of dramatic grey against the (usually) blue sky. The mountains add great contrast to the powdery beach, and the hills are home to some truly stupendous houses and villas – some of which I can assist in renting for your stay? 5. The luxurious lifestyle Camps Bay one of the most expensive suburbs in the entire country, and there is something in the air that makes you feel like you are part of a secret society. Hotels, restaurants and bars are opulent, with sumptuous furnishings, lavish bathrooms, and views to dream of. The beautiful people, sports cars and pricy boutiques add to the invisible allure of this special place, and after just a few hours in Camps Bay you are sure to wish you never had to leave this slice of paradise. If you’d like to chat Camps Bay, I have plenty of insider tips, hotel options and excursion ideas that we can discuss!

FEEL INTERNATIONAL, STAY LOCAL SERIES! If you’re keen on Keukenhof, try Namaqualand!

04 June 2020

Just outside of Amsterdam lies one of the world’s largest floral displays – the internationally renowned Keukenhof. Originally planted as the vegetable and herb garden of a nearby manor house, Keukenhof is now a stunning collection of various flowers, trees and water features that covers over 32 hectares. I was lucky enough to visit in 2019 and was genuinely overawed by the riot of colour and intricate planned flower beds. But did you know that locally we have one of the largest natural displays that the floral kingdom puts on? The Namaqualand region has the highest concentration of succulent plants of any of the world's arid regions – and more than a thousand of its estimated 3 500 flora species cannot be found anywhere else in the world! During the spring of each year, these explode into an endless carpet of colour as the normally dry sands almost miraculously turn into field after field of flowers. The area offers several quaint towns, scenic mountain passes, and the starkly beautiful Atlantic coast, but the real draw card is the flowers. Because the window of time to see them is limited, I have a few tips for you on how best to plan your trip to Namaqualand. 1. Most importantly, the timing of the flowers depends on the winter rains. Working closely with an expert on the area is the best way to ensure that we get the timing just right for your trip. I work with only a few local operators who specialize in the region in order to ensure that you get the most out of this incredible trip. 2. Stay flexible and be prepared to change your route if needed. Because the flowers depend on so many natural factors that we cannot control, it is necessary to be prepared to change the planned route if the flowers are better in another area. Also remember that the area holds many other attractions – such as rooibos tea farms, mountain passes, and Bushman rock art. 3. Book early – because the region is small, but the flowers world-famous, accommodation and tour guides are quickly snapped up and if left too late, you’ll have only a self-guided day trip as an option. 4. Plan an escorted tour – travelling with a guide who has intricate knowledge of the flowers and the best routes each day. These tours can be private or with a small group, but I recommend this as everything is arranged in advance and you can relax and enjoy the incredible flowers instead of stressing about driving routes and finding accommodation. 5. Make time to explore the towns too – the small town of Niewoudtville is charming, with an intricate church and many small farms that open up for guests to picnic and explore. Clanwilliam is a beautifully picturesque town, with many good options for lunches and shopping. Closer to the coast the town of Paternoster is one of my absolute favourites – typically stark Atlantic coast with the feel of a Greek island town. A truly once-in-a-lifetime experience, with far fewer crowds of tourists, Namaqualand is a must-do for those who enjoy natural tourism and spectacular scenery! Get in touch if you'd like to find out any more about how to plan the perfect trip to see this phenomenon.

Why I Made Travel my Career

18 May 2020

I’ve spent a lot of time lately pondering the concept of travel. Why do we as human beings want to travel away from the safe homes, we have built for ourselves, and the countries and cultures that we know. Surely it would make sense as a species to create your home, and then stay there where you’ve put your roots down? Do we who love to travel lack some fundamental gene that keeps our feet perennially itchy? This thought path has turned me to reflections on my personal experiences of travel, and why I chose to take a passion and turn it into a career. Old photos shared by my parents start to tell a story and looking back on family holidays cements the inkling that travel has always been in my blood. I grew up with a family that travelled at every opportunity. My first holiday was when I was a mere three months old, and by the time my brother came along, I was a seasoned traveller who had been around the country on various trips with my young parents. We were in Ballito, Wilderness, Sterkfontein and Cape Town regularly, and were also incredibly lucky to travel into Botswana and Zimbabwe several times, on long adventures that often included nights spent in campsites we had created in the middle of the road, so deserted was the park we found ourselves in. Long before Google Maps existed, I remember sitting with my father, spellbound but cynical of the “TomTom” that could tell us exactly where on earth we were. It was a regular laugh that we knew exactly where WE were, but not where anything else was! Those were trips of pure unadulterated joy as a young child; days spent perched on the roof rack of the car looking for game during drives, afternoons spent setting up camp before inventing games to play (Lion and Buck was a favourite – a kind of safari Cops and Robbers meet Stuck-in-the-Mud), avoiding tidy-up chores in the evening, and nights spent gazing at the infinite blackness of the African skies while the fireplace crackled softly. Those adventures came with challenges too – from unreliable 4x4s breaking down in small towns, to being scammed buying currency on the back streets of Bulawayo. Those trips shaped me and my love for adventure, and I will forever be grateful to have had the chance to explore so much of Africa before I had even reached 13. The allure of “overseas” began to nibble away at me in my teens, and luckily I was treated to a trip around England when I was 13. I was HOOKED! When I was 16, I took the train on my own from Chester to London to join family friends before heading to Barcelona for a cruise. The ease of being able to jump on a train and arrive somewhere new blew me away. I remember so clearly arriving at the station in London – with that crazy bustle of harried looking commuters, the buzz of their chatter, the electronic signboards flashing exotic place names – and starting to understand how easy travel can be. – and how thrilling. The next year I was off to France for a school exchange programme - and there began my obsession with all things French! A few nights in Paris with a small group of friends and an exceptionally cool French teacher was absolutely everything that I had never known I wanted. To this day, France is without a doubt my favourite country in the world! Then it was back to university and some serious studies – I did a BSc with Honours in Biochemistry of all things – with the constant itch to travel. During those years we did a lot of local travel – from Durban every year for the July, to Cape Town regularly to pretend that we fit in on the beaches of Camps Bay – and the love of the road trip was deepened. In 2006 a friend and I went off on a whirlwind Contiki tour of Europe, and then my life and my career path changed completely. I saw a way to travel for a living, meeting people, showing them secret beach bars and back-alley historic sites, and I was sold. I came home, made the application to become a tour manager, and began work on a monstrous assignment that we were to complete before embarking on a three-month training trip around Europe. An epic trip that will forever remained etched in my brain – nothing like running around a brand new city with a clipboard and a pen and trying to learn absolutely everything that you may need before your first tour with paying clients! Contiki molded me in many ways. The job of being a tour manager is often touted as being “the best in the world” – and it is – but man oh man, is it tough! You’re up all night with the party animals, first to breakfast in the morning, doing history talks and walking tours, getting to know everyone, taking injured guests to the hospital, and sleeping very, very little. And then doing it all again in two weeks with a new group of people! It was absolutely, indescribably awesome. I was on the road for three years, for both the summer and winter seasons, and in my off time we explored more of Europe – Milan, Genoa, more Paris, more Rome, even Tunisia. Rudely, the UK government decided that South Africans would need visas to enter their country in 2009, and I was left forced to make a decision about my career, as I was no longer able to operate out of London. I came home sad but happy to unpack my suitcase and catch up with old friends. I got involved in events through clients of the staffing business that I had started in 2001, and became over the next few years a highly specialized event logistics manager. This involved working quite closely with travel agents, and I began to understand the incentives travel sector very well. Crafting true bucket-list prize trips for corporate clients, with all of the extra touches one could only dream of on a budget trip, really excited me, and being able to work with brilliant marketing managers and events teams made this a dream job. The only element that held me back was that I could not book flights myself, so in a move that stunned my friends and family, I decided a few years ago to study travel instead of doing an MBA! I did the requisite courses on the software, scoring full marks in all my exams, and transitioned smoothly into the travel industry. I had never realized how much I already knew about both front- and back-end sides of travel! In the years that I have been a full ticketing agent, I have developed an even deeper love for the industry. For me, travel is more than a career, it is a true passion. I have found where I need to be, and I am not going anywhere!

2020 Trends in MICE

30 January 2020

The MICE industry is regularly looked to for inspirational travel ideas and trends. Being at the forefront of the swings and changes in the travel world allows MICE planners and experts to offer their clients the right venues, destinations and even food types that are new and fresh. This gives a competitive edge over those who constantly present the same, safe options. As an experienced incentive and events manager, planning trips like this is one of my favourite things to do! Understanding the client is a large part of working in incentive travel, and being able to suggest the right destination for each client is an important part of the role of MICE specialists. 1. Eco-Conscious Travel Sustainable travel is one of the biggest trends that the industry has seen over the last few years, from an environmental, economic, and social perspective. The trend is making its way from leisure travelers to corporate and MICE travelers, and this is definitely the largest movement in the travel industry for 2020. Eco-conscious travel is about more than just avoiding single-use plastics, and should take a step towards long term sustainability through initiatives such as farm-to-table foods from local farmers, tree plantings, environmentally friendly transport, solar power and hotels and venues that follow green practices. Big brands are making a statement about what they stand for, and ultimately it is the consumers who are demanding it. There is also a huge rise in travelers requesting gluten-free, vegan and locally sourced products, and a movement against food wastage at hotels and meeting venues offering grab-and-go food stations 2. Authentic travel Along with the move towards greener travel is the desire from clients to really connect with their travels, through genuine experiences that are not mass created for a one-size-fits-all market. Travellers are more aware than ever of true connections and seek sincerity in their travels – both for incentives and for their own leisure. It’s also easier for guests to add tag-on holidays to their work trip if they feel that they are in a unique destination that they may never return to. This can be achieved through supporting local people for all aspects of the incentive, such as using local dancers for entertainment pieces and sourcing local ingredients for meals. Some hotels are built directly in consultation with the local communities, such as the stunning SALT of Palmar in Mauritius, where everything was created by a local artisan. This trend allows the group to really give back in a valuable way. 3. Smaller groups, bigger budgets, better connections The phrase mass-personalisation may seem to be an oxymoron, but this description sums up the movement towards offering truly individual concierge for each traveler. Varied flight times, add-on stays, food choices and more intimate meeting sessions all feature here. The overall spend per person per day is also increasing, although group sizes are shrinking. This ties back into the authentic movement I am seeing, where people would rather have 20 people who have a spectacular experience and feel greatly valued, than 500 people who have an average experience and feel like just another number. The improved technology at our fingertips also allows us to consider more and more unusual destinations, that may traditionally have been too difficult logistically to run events in. Hologram speakers and 5G streaming allows meetings and important presentations to take place in remote locations. 4. Cruising Whilst most companies are looking to go smaller and add more value per person, those that have huge workforces are increasingly moving their MICE travel to cruising. Whether for 6000 people on a chartered ocean-liner in the Caribbean, or an executive board meeting of 12 on board a luxury river cruise in Europe, the total cost per person on a cruise is significantly lower than for a land-based venue of a similar standard. Cruises allow clients to pay one price that covers everything – from meeting rooms to accommodation, and the guest experience is vast – while still only needing to unpack once. The need to stay one step ahead of the game in MICE is a definitely a reason to engage with specialized travel and events managers when considering your next incentive trip or destination event. Connect with me today to discuss your ideas and how we can bring them to life.

Some Day Trips from Rome to Consider

21 January 2020

I love Rome, really I do. And there is so much to see that it is hard to tear yourself away – I’m working on a blog on things to do in the city itself in fact! But sometimes the chaos of the Italian capital, with its scooters and crowds and heat, can get to me and I just need a little time out and a glimpse into less well known spots to make me rekindle my love of Italy. Rome is located in the Lazio region of Italy, lying in the hilly centre of the country and bordered by the Tyrrhenian Sea. Add the meandering and ancient Tiber River, the deep inland lakes and the gorgeous beaches, the region as a whole is an enticing destination once you leave the borders of the city of Rome. It’s possible even to travel as far south as Naples and Pompeii, or even to the Renaissance cradle of Florence, if you make Rome your base and head out on a few day trips. I’ve rounded up five great options for those who are keen to explore the area surrounding Rome a little further. All can be reached on the efficient train system, or if you’re feeling particularly brave chat to me about renting a car and really hitting the road, Italian-style! 1. Bracciano A personal favourite destination of mine, this gorgeous town lies on the banks of Lake Bracciano – the second largest lake in the region. You’ll feel like you are on a different world when you arrive in the town, gazing up at the Castello Odescalchi which sits serenely on the hills above the lake itself. The village of Bracciano is a warren of small medieval streets, with viewpoints and ramparts from which you can gaze over the lake and the surrounding hillsides. The region is well known for olive groves and forests, and with no motorized watersports allowed on the lake, it is a quiet and peaceful spot. You can go on a boat trip, or enjoy a delicious meal of local fresh water fish, or even game from the surrounding forests. At 30 minutes in a car to an hour on the train, this is a must do if you are craving some nature on your Roman holiday! 2. Ostia Antica Another spot I really enjoy is the coastline near Rome, and in particular the ancient town of Ostia, with its incredibly well preserved ruins that date from its era as Rome’s seaport. You can still see the docks, mansions, shops, and even Roman baths in this small town about 30 minutes from the city centre. Ostia became wealthy as a salt merchant in about 600 BC, until it was conquered by Rome and made the naval base for the growing Republic (later Empire). It was the fall of Rome that saved the Ostia that we can see today – when the port was abandoned the harbor silted up and the mud kept the town buried and safe from atmospheric damage. Some parts of Ostia Antica have been excavated as recently as 40 years ago only! If on the other hand you are totally history-ed out and just want to chill on a beach, Ostia is the favourite seaside spot of locals. There are lots of private beaches where you’ll need to buy a drink or a meal to enjoy their loungers, but also two free beaches. It’s a great place to sit back, sip your cocktail, and watch the sunset over the ocean before heading back to Rome on the train. 3. Tivoli Gardens The town of Tivoli lies only 30km from Rome, but the beautiful leafy gardens make it feel like another planet! Most well-known for the elaborate Villa d’Este, which is a Renaissance era mansion, the town is also home to the Villa Adriana – dating back to the time of Emperor Hadrian! Villa d’Este is simply magnificent, with its enormous fountains and shady avenues, while Villa Adriana offers an insight into what in 118 AD was one of the largest villas in the entire world. You’ll want to give yourself time for both of these, as well as time for a stroll around the town and lunch at one of the local trattoria’s. Save space for some gelato after lunch before heading back to the city. 4. Orvieto I’ve been lucky enough to visit this incredible place only once, but it left a lasting impression on me! You can see the hilltop cathedral from the train as you approach the town, standing in its imperious position as it has since 1290. Nothing can prepare you for seeing it up close – it’s a combination of glimmering mosaics, twisted braids of marble, and detailed sculptures. In the medieval years, people could not read, so by adorning the front of the cathedral with artworks telling the stories of the bible, the church was able to educate even peasants from the area. By using the mosaics, the stained glass and the sculptures, the stories of the Virgin, the Assumption and the Nativity – amongst others – are beautifully displayed. There is also a fascinating series of caves that run underneath the chunk of rock that is Orvieto. These caves have been used for everything from wine storage to WW2 bunkers. The tunnels were only rediscovered in the 1970s, and make for a pretty interesting tour of about an hour. Orvieto is a bit further out (96km to be precise), but if you have the time I strongly recommend it! 5. Castelli Romani Directly translated to English this means simply, “Roman Castles”, and that is exactly what you can expect. Only 20km from the city centre lie these thirteen pretty little towns, each of which has its own castle. The towns are clustered on the Alban Hills, and most have views of the deep blue Lago Albano. Each of the small towns has its own appeal, but the best way to approach a day in the region is to feast on the local food and wine! Take a stroll around Frascati and see the whole roast pork called porchetta on display in most restaurants, normally served up as a few slices between some rustic white bread. It’s the perfect accompaniment to the local wine – a white wine that is winning awards worldwide at the moment. Then make your way up to Castel Gandolfo – the home of the pope’s summer residence. With a prior booking you can visit the palace and the museum, although my favourite thing to do is to wander through the beautiful gardens – which are located on the site of the villa of the Emperor Domitian. Then take a stroll down towards the banks of the lake to see the black volcanic sand up close, enjoy a swim if you so wish, or even hire a bicycle or kayak. Both towns are easily reached on the train from Rome, and a full day here will leave you feeling rested and ready to return to the rush of Rome! Get in touch today to chat about tailor making your perfect Italian trip!

Joburg - South Africa's bustling heart

18 May 2020

Sitting at home, as I have been for nearly two months, has got me thinking about my own hometown – the energetic, dynamic and friendly city of Johannesburg, known to locals as Joburg or Jozi. There is a vibrancy here that makes up for the lack of obvious natural beauty, such as sweeping coastlines or dramatic mountains. Jozi is the largest city in South Africa – both by population and by sheer size – but although it is a gateway into Africa thanks to its excellent infrastructure, it is often overlooked by both local and foreign visitors. The city holds a certain allure that makes it an exciting place to visit, and that is why I still call Joziburg my home! Joburg pumps with an energy and a buzz that lies just below the surface, along with the constant brrrrping of the minibus taxi tooting their way through the traffic. Home to magnificent sunsets and vibrant shanty towns, the city is best enjoyed with insider knowledge and a healthy serving of bravado. Joburg moves fast and the only way to fit in is to keep up – whether in the crazy traffic or the chic nightclubs. It only takes one peek at some of the top local restaurants to understand that the moniker “the City of Gold” refers not only to the precious metal, but to the luxury that the city holds should you know where to look. Of course, Joburg is also home to some top historical attractions, which cover a lot of the intricacies of the former political regime. Mostly notably amongst these is the Apartheid Museum, which takes you on a poignant journey through the oppression of the system and how it eventually gave way to the birth of democracy. Constitution Hill is a living museum that tells the story of South Africa's modern historical journey, and also home to the country's Constitutional Court, which endorses the rights of all citizens. Gold Reef City satisfies thrill seekers with its light-hearted view of the region's industrial history through mining-themed attractions. Then towards the south of the city the area of Soweto covers a vast distance with everything from shanty towns to multi-storey houses. An abbreviation for "southwestern townships," Soweto birthed the freedom movement, and one street in the city is the former home of three Nobel Peace Prize recipients. Guided tours of the townships often include a visit to the Mandela House, now a national monument. Top-end restaurants jostle for space with food trucks and the area is a popular tourist haunt. When all of the must-see sites have been visited, and pause given to South Africa’s complicated journey to political freedom, visitors will be ready to explore the city’s hidden nature, startling architecture and exceptional food and drink experiences. Head to the local favourite, the village within a city, Parkhurst, to see barristers competing for the ultimate latte, before grabbing a craft beer and a pizza around the corner in funky Greenside. Then it's a short trip to the Westcliff Hill and the Four Seasons, for the best view of the sunset in town – with a couple of elephants in the nearby zoo for good measure. Wander through the streets of Sandton with a good camera to find Insta-fodder for architecture lovers, and when you're up for craft gin and tapas pairings, Urbanologi in vibrant central Jozi is the spot to be. A visit to the Neighbourgoods Market provides the ideal insight into the local hipster scene – where Gucci sneakers are combined with vintage jeans and everyone, EVERYONE, is gorgeous. There’s even a beach club in this landlocked city if you know where to look... For foreign visitors the city is great value for money, and the standards of bars, restaurants and hotels is far higher than most expect. Guests can comfortably enjoy award-winning cuisine and the country’s crisp wines without spending more than $ 50.00. Hotels of a three-star grade are comfortable and under $ 100.00 a night, although the ultra-luxurious market will also find superb lodgings in the city. This means that stays of a few days are within reach for most travelers, and day trips to the nearby Hartbeespoort Dam can be combined with decadent long lunches in country bistros, and visits to the Cradle of Humankind can easily be topped with safari-experiences at the Lion Park. Joburg is a city bustling with pride and energy, that needs a local’s love to really show herself off best. She's my home town, and I love watching people's wonder as they realise that there is so much more to this sprawling, treefilled metropolis than just grime and an airport. Get in touch today if you'd like to talk your custom Jozi-experience!

What you should know about Paris

22 January 2020

Paris is a marvel, a complex jumble of history and art and culture – thrown together with architectural wonders, street smarts and cuisine. Add to that the indescribable Paris-ness of the place, and you have an incredible destination. I've just returned from a ten day break in the city, and I love it even more. But too often I hear people complain about Paris, that it underwhelmed them, or "quelle horreur"... that the French were rude. As a self-confessed Francophile I am here to set the record straight and help you make the most of your Parisian experience – and arrange one for you if you don’t have one planned (yet)! Now this may sound a bit odd, but picture if you will a cat and a dog at your front door as you arrive at home. Picture the dog, leaping all over you, making noises of love, maybe even yapping a little. Now, picture the cat… distant, on a table or counter on the other end of the room, not looking directly at you, yet somehow aware of you. You know that when the cat feels like it, he or she may approach you to demand some love, but for now, you’d hardly know it. Rule number one: the French are cats. Think of them as cats, and you will start to understand their ways. They are interested in you and they do care, but you’ll need to be the one to make the move! Also remember as you make your way into the streets, that you have landed in a capital city, a very large city that is home to 2.1 million people yet has more than 40 million visitors annually… try to greet people in shops, learn a few words of the language, and don’t expect every person you stop on the street to know how to direct you around the city like a tour guide. Every effort you make with the Parisians will be worth it, trust me. That all being said, on to the real Paris, the place that draws me back consistently year after year and after more than 100 visits there… the place I dream of and the place I without doubt believe that every person should visit at least once in their lifetime. Paris has everything. The list of must-see sites is extensive and for good reason the world’s most visited church, monument, and museum are all to be found in the city. For that reason, my advice on your first visit is to plan a busy and jam-packed first few days to see the big draws – the Louvre, the Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame, the Champs Elysees and the Arc de Triomphe. Give yourself another day to explore the wondrous Musée d’Orsay, the Sainte Chappelle and the fascinating Army Museum, and then take a day off from touristing and start to explore the backstreets. Head to the beautiful Buttes aux Cailles to experience the village-like feel of the 13th arrondissement, take a train to the medieval Chateau de Vincennes and its enormous parklands, or explore the Bois du Boulogne and its Louis Vuitton Foundation. Better yet, take the train all the way to La Defense to see how the French can make even skyscrapers look good, or wander around the largest Chinatown in Europe in the Triangle de Choisy. If you’re short on time, promise me you will at least visit one covered passageway, find a menu without English, and take a side street off the main avenues to see the locals going about their day. Parisian florists are my favourites, and the competition for the city’s best macaroon is tough… let’s not even talk about the delicious falafels in the Marais (walking distance from the Louvre)! Like all cities, the more time you have the more you can experience, but what I believe you should know about Paris is that she keeps her cards tight to her chest… like that cat that won’t come near you until you tickle its chin just right, Paris just needs a little extra love and attention before she becomes your all-time favourite! I would love the chance to show you Paris how she should be seen – get in touch today to chat Paris, and maybe we can even start to explore Normandy, the Riviera and the rest of this magnificent country. I'll even share my secret sights of Paris, my favourite restaurants and where to get the best rooftop views (and cocktails). I can’t wait!

Helping smooth the SAA strike

21 November 2019

Recently SAA’s staff downed their tools and went on a strike that saw several days of flight cancellations. It’s not a trend that is unique to South Africa that large organisations unionize and strike. Even in the United States, in January 2019 there was a government shutdown that included workers from international airlines. The behind the scenes reasons and politics are complex, but these strikes can cause a huge impact on our travel plans – whether for business or leisure. The SAA shutdown caused (and is still causing) issues for thousands of travelers, many of which had to rebook their flights or cancel completely. Those that had booked online were stranded at airports around the world if they were not aware of the strike, and while the other airlines tried to assist where possible, availability quickly ran out and many people were required to spend exorbitant amounts of money to re-route. I had a friend affected who had booked online and was out of the country when she heard about the strike. She tried in vain to contact the site she had booked through, but was unable to. She also could not get hold of the airline, and in desperation reached out to me to help her. As a travel professional I have access to a lot of information prior to it being released to the public. I also have systems and contacts, as well as a dedicated support team, that are positioned to assist in cases like this. I was able to find a contact through my network who worked at the site she booked through, and speak with them directly. While I could not access her file to directly assist her, I managed to get all of the information she needed to cancel the SAA flight and rebook onto another flight. She was thrilled and amazed at the help I was prepared to giver her, even though she had not booked with me. Using online services may seem easy and at first glance there may been some money saved, but having a dedicated professional at your hands is the best way to guarantee the smoothest possible travels. Because while some things are out of your control, together you are as well equipped as possible. I’m with my clients throughout the booking process, the travel dates, and the follow up. I am available 24/7 to my travelling clients, and this allows them to focus fully on their travels – either for that long-awaited holiday, or that important meeting first thing tomorrow. In the travel industry, supplier strikes can cause immense challenges, but you as the traveler shouldn’t be the one to worry – leave that to the professionals!

Some Travel Tips to Start

06 November 2019

This oft-mentioned subject is one that is based a lot on personal preference, but those who are lucky enough to have travelled extensively do tend to agree on certain things. For someone like myself, for whom travel is both a living and a passion, some things that are second nature to me are like lightbulbs of genius to others. So feel free to use or discard these tips, but know that each has come from experience! • Start a packing list and save it on your phone. These lists are personal, and everyone has their own quirks and oft-forgotten items. But if you have easy access to this list – on the Notes app for example – you can refer to it each time you pack, and add to it as you realise items are missing. I even add to my list while I am lying awake in the middle of the night and random things come to me. • Always travel with a scarf. Another tip that pops up often, and for good reason. I have a personal favourite travel scarf – it’s a great size, thickness and suitably smart if I am in an airport lounge or business class. It makes a perfect pillow, blanket and shawl, and I even plan my travel outfit based on its colours. Handy tip? Scarves also make ideal outfit features and are small, light and inexpensive to buy anywhere in the world! • Always pack a multiplug. Not an adaptor – that’s obvious (add it to your packing list right now!) – but a multiplug that offers several outlets for your home country. Often hotels have only one available plug point and then you have to debate what deserves to be charged first, how to dry your hair and heat your straightener at the same time etc. I literally have one that lives in my suitcase. • Ladies, this one if for you. Find a nice, stylish, transparent make-up bag, and use only that bag on your travels. It saves having to use a ziplock bag on the flight, and saves you a little weight for your check-in luggage. You also then have all of your make up on the flight – if you need it. • Noise. Cancelling. Headphones. Enough said. Just trust me. Do it. You will NEVER REGRET this. I have a pair of Sony wireless ones, and they are the ultimate game changer. • Pack a pair of spare undies and a small aerosol dry shampoo and deodorant in your hand luggage. As long as the aerosols are under 100ml they are safe for travel, and along with your make up, these can make you feel instantly refreshed when you land. This is especially helpful for flights that land super early, where you cannot check in to your accommodation immediately. • If you have a long stopover, especially travelling with kids or family, consider adding lounge access to your travel booking. The cost is often equivalent to what you will spend on food and drinks, plus you get some quiet time and a comfortable seat. • On arrival at your destination, weigh up the costs of the train or bus service with the cost of a taxi. Taxis are normally regulated from the airport into town, so you can judge based on the number of travellers in your party which makes more sense. Normally for three or more people the costs are quite similar, and the sheer convenience of taking a taxi directly to your destination is worth the few extra bucks you may need to put in.

Why I Travel

06 November 2019

In our world of instant gratification, self-awareness and social media, we are often exposed to inspirational travel quotes with gorgeous background images of unnamed beaches, mystical mountain vistas, or exotic foods. Those are not why I travel - they are just fuel for my fire! Why do you travel? For me, to travel is - truly - to live. There is nothing better than exploring a new city. I’m not so much a “sights” person, more of a “senses” person – I love to wander the streets and find the local favourites, while watching the people go about their day, smelling the scents of the city and allowing my mind to wander. It brings me a deep feeling of peace to stroll aimlessly, window shopping and taking in all the tiny details that make a place, that place. Some of my favourite travel memories have come from days spent far from the main attractions, music in my ears and happiness in my heart as I meander through an exciting location. Personally I prefer cities to the beach or the bush, but I am partial to tiny villages nestled in forests and foreign languages. Why do you travel - ask yourself this question, the underlying reason, and together we will find the perfect next journey for you. “It is better to see something once, than to hear about it a thousand times.” An Asian proverb, that sums up my approach to travel. Here's to the perfect solution to solving your wanderlust - together!

My customer stories

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Sent by Nalini Moodley

I would like to place on record our sincere thanks and appreciation for the arrangements you put together for our recent trip to the Caribbean. The cricket world cup in the West Indies was on my bucket list. Thanks to you everything went off well, the choice of hotels in each of the 3 countries were great and best of all was the suite in Barbados where my family and I could spend some quality time in between sightseeing and the game. Your selection of local service providers were excellent, they were on time, friendly and helpful. Your prompt response to our requests while away was incredible, we were very comfortable during this time. I guess the cherry on the top was to see the Proteas in 3 games (group, semi and final). What an incredible experience for all of us, you made part of that possible and we appreciate it!

Sent by Des Casserly

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Sent by Steve Hulme

10/10 Outstanding service in the most difficult of circumstances. Thank you for dealing with the cancellation of our online flights at short notice, getting us the ticket refund vouchers and handling the rebooking of the family onto one flight and in one row.

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10/10! Kerith offers exceptional service, and is always happy to help. There is this personal touch to everything. Highly recommended!!

Sent by Christiaan Lourens

In summary, my experience with Kerith was nothing short of extraordinary. Her professionalism, communication, expertise, adaptability, and commitment to providing unparalleled value make them stand out in an industry where excellence is the benchmark. Without hesitation, I would entrust future travel plans to their capable hands, confident in the knowledge that each journey would be as exceptional as the last.

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Sent by Diana Bergemann

Kerith Hulme is highly recommended for all your travel requirements. She processed my international flights and appended domestic flights in January 2024 for my travels in November and December 2024. Throughout these aforementioned months, Kerith has constantly and with incredibly fast feedback, assisted me with my queries. These included preseating , booking a wheelchair in each City and explaining my queries with outstanding clarity. It is so comforting (I am a pensioner travelling alone) to have Kerry help me. She's an extremely experienced and knowledgeable Travel Consultant who has attained enormous success with having her own travel business. Thank you Kerith for your gigantic help given me. I look forward to your processing all my travel journeys going forward.

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10/10! Kerith has all the inside information and great advice when it comes to booking your dream trip . She has come to know exactly what my personal preferences are , and tailor makes each and every trip. I highly recommend her services!!

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Sent by Nadine De Melim

I really just need to thank you again for the most amazing, unforgettable trip!! Our Italian adventure was everything and more we had ever dreamed off and knowing you were literally just a whatsapp message away for all my concerns (even the teeny tiny ones) made this holiday even better! Knowing everything is sorted or can be sorted out super quick was the best! Thank you for all your help, time & effort - You are amazing! Thank you will never be enough, I will most definilty be planning all our future trips with you! and refer you to everyone I know! You have been the best! Thank you, thank you, thank you! I look forward to planning our next adventure with you!????

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Kerith was invaluable when our international flight was hugely delayed, she sorted everything in record time so we could just relax and enjoy our holiday albeit a day late! Right from the start she was there ready to answer queries really quickly and I would nt hesitate to recommend her. We could nt have done it with out her!

Sent by Katleho Khoza

We just wanted to thank you for planning a magnificent trip for us. It was everything that we had imagined it would be and even more. Also your being available to us throughout the trip made a huge difference to ease the anxiety of navigating things in a foreign country.

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Sent by Lynn Schmid

Just to say a very big thank you for organising the most fantastic trip. I had a blast and everything worked amazingly.

Sent by James Irons

Our trip was an absolute success. Everything worked really well. Pickups, drop offs, we never had an issue once. Melissa, our guide, was also amazing, very special human. And the app worked so nicely. It was so nice to have all the documents there. Thank you for also loading the additional documents on there for us. So nice and easy and convenient. Everything like pickups and drop offs were on time, local airlines were perfect. It was a very special trip. Thank you for all your work in putting it all together.

Sent by Nina Sparv

10/10 Kerith & Michelle always gave me quick answers to my doubts and questions, and helped me plan a really awesome trip to South Africa & Zanzibar!

Sent by Oliver Speers

10/10 - only because there was no 11!

Sent by Barry Preston

10/10, the service was great!

Sent by Jenny West

10/10 Kerith has been my Travel Counsellor for many years. She is professional, knowledgeable and very helpful. I won’t use anyone else.

Sent by Angela Richardson

Thanks so much for arranging a super trip for us to Mauritius. We had a wonderful family holiday at Sugar Beach and will have special memories to last a life time! Thanks too for your incredible service, prompt response and understanding with regards to the rooms we initially received. We were so grateful to have it resolved so quickly and the peace of mind having inter leading rooms with our boys. We hope to be in touch again in the not too distant future to plan another wonderful getaway.

Sent by Suanette Visagie

10, 10, 10!!!! I already shared your contact details with our family members that said they want to come and visit us.

Sent by Diana Bergemann

10/10 Kerith is so friendly and efficient and really cares.

Sent by Anna Kordas

10/10 This is the second time I've used Kerith's services and they are always, friendly, helpful and personalised. A joy to work with and her knowledge of other countries is outstanding :-)

Sent by Taryn de Boer-Smit

10/10 Kerith has been amazing. I put feelers out to numerous travel agents. She was right on it and showed an interest in what we wanted. She has been very helpful in tailoring the holiday to suit our needs.

Sent by Kai Snyders

Thank you Kerith for your great advice, support and for going the extra mile for your customers. I can always rely on your advice and I know I am in good hands regarding any follow-up support that I require.

Sent by Bianca Ruskin

10/10 I cannot begin to explain what a pleasant experience it was dealing with Kerith, her expertise is beyond compare and I am very grateful for all of her assistance and the knowledge that she shared with me regarding Rome and Italy. She will definitely be booking my next adventure, and every one after that!

Sent by Jenny West

Kerith has always been incredibly profession and supportive. She does all my bookings from local to international and nothing is too much for her. I will only use her and value her work tremendously. Thank you.

Sent by Debbie Haasbroek

10/10 Kerith went way beyond the necessary requirements in meeting us to plan our upcoming Christmas snow holiday, and was a wealth of information for activities and Must-see sights to visit on our trip . She has really got a good handle on what we like , and will definitely use her in the future . I highly recommend her services!

Sent by Donald McLaughlin

Kerith provides superlative service.

Sent by Faye Darby

10/10! Kerith is superb. She went the extra mile to assist us in booking our trip. She was very helpful in providing us with all the relevant information we needed for our journey, always going over and beyond, Kerith is knowledgeable and professional at sorting out your every need. I would highly recommend her.

Sent by Lyn Heeger

10/10! Always top notch service from Kerith - she is very patient with me. I always have a million questions!

Sent by Samantha Denichaud

Kerith has always gone above and beyond to provide us with the most memorable and hassle free travel. Whether it's just a minor booking or a massive holiday plan, nothing is too much/little for her to help out with.

Sent by Ashley Willows

Kerith was a dream to work with and really does go the extra mile to ensure her clients are happy!

Sent by Julia Bentz

Kerith was very professional and made the time to customize our trip to be the way we wanted it. She advised us and gave us her own personal suggestions from her experience in Italy, which was nice, especially as this was our first time travelling to Italy. We give Kerith a 10/10 score.

Sent by Heather Morgan

Kerith was brilliant when our flights to Dublin via Heathrow were cancelled after checking in online. We found out 7 hours before taking off, just as we were preparing to leave our apartment. Kerith rebooked our flights, checked all the COVID regulations, advised us of all documentation that we needed and was supportive throughout a very stressful situation! We cannot recommend her enough. Kerith is kind and understanding throughout the whole process. We were on another flight that same day via Amsterdam. Amazing!

Sent by Justine Brotherton

We just felt at a time that is very scary to travel, that Kerith from Travel Counsellors, helped us to change our minds. She guided us and made us feel comfortable flying. Thanks so much, Kerith for making it so easy, and letting us change a couple of times. Thank you.

Sent by Hazel Hamman

What a relief! With all the COVID rules changing on a daily basis, you can't do without Travel Counsellors. All the COVID rules and regulations were listed step by step. I've heard of things I didn't even know existed. I'm SO glad I came across you. I will be using this service forever. Thanks for all your help and assistance. I feel relieved that you are on my side should I encounter a problem - Kerith is only a phone call or an email away from help.

Sent by Toni Greene

Kerith is extremely helpful at all hours of the day answering all questions. She made the full experience of booking our trip so easy and exciting at the same time.

Sent by Sacha levesque

Given how complicated the travel world has become in the last 2 years, I have completely moved away from my former DIY approach. And given the quality of service received since that switch, I really can't imagine making any travel arrangements without Kerith's help anymore.

Sent by Jessica Moyer

Kerith is wonderful! No question is too small, no detail too obscure - and I think I have tested the limits of travel knowledge in the past year. Kerith has always found a way to get me where I need to go.

Sent by Tamra Jones

Kerith is so helpful and she has been a comfort during this unprecedented time of travel!

Sent by Lauren Franze

I often refer friends to Kerith and I use her all the time since she makes life (and traveling) easier!

Sent by Anthony Jones

Kerith goes above and beyond providing the best routes available, taking a lot of time to explain things and then backing this up with a wealth of information about the travel restrictions to help navigate a complex environment with confidence.

Sent by Taryn-Lea Carvalho

Great service and turnaround time. I was presented with a few different options according to the specifications that I gave. Thank You Kerith.

Sent by Bronwyn Ansell

Fabulous service. Kerith assisted me through the entire process and she made it all easy. Thank you so much.

Sent by Jenny West

I have used Kerith for all my travels. She is very professional and she is always willing to help. Thank you.

Sent by Takara Brook

Kerith ensured that my husband and I had a great honeymoon at the last minute! From answering my messages late at night to checking up on us, whilst we were away; incredible service!

Sent by Vasagi Moodley

Kerith put together a wonderful package for us that met our needs. She kept us updated and answered all our questions and queries. She listened to what we wanted rather than sell what she could. She is pleasant, prompt and a pleasure to deal with.

Sent by Marcia Valkin

Kerith is very helpful. As an older person I felt supported.

Sent by Lynn Morkel

Kerith always does something extra and unexpected. She defines service excellence.

Sent by Desire Borain

Kerith has been amazing and provided brilliant service. I will be booking my monthly flights with her. It is an absolute pleasure to work with Kerith.

Sent by Genevieve Van Der Vyver

Kerith is a saving grace when it comes to travel. I wouldn't use anybody else! She is efficient, fast, and friendly and she is always thinking ahead for me.

Sent by Jenny Petyt West

Kerith is absolutely fantastic. She has been organising my holiday trips for quite a while and I have had the best time. She is always available for me to ask her questions. Nothing is ever too inconvenient for her to organise or do for me. I highly recommend Kerith for all your holiday trips. She really is the best and I look forward to many more holidays organised by her.

Sent by Holger Vogt

Kerith has been of great help and really made our stay in South Africa memorable. Our trip took us from Durban to Cape Town and Kerith planned the entire trip by really taking our interests and wishes into consideration. Thanks so much Kerith making our trip unique and I can't wait for you to help us on our next journey. I can highly recommend Kerith to anyone thinking about a stress free vacation!

Sent by Rochelle Keene

Just to say a huge thank you for arranging my flight to Toronto and for being available ALL THE TIME as I faced ridiculous challenges in Amsterdam. I felt really safe in your hands and sincerely appreciate your devotion as you helped me steer through the passport clearance process there. All was really well at the end and there was no problem on the Canadian side. And the app you suggested I download for quarantine in Canada is just spot on - it's worked so well, and I check in every day to confirm my health status so all is well on this side. You are just so amazing!! Thank you once again! I could not manage to travel ever again without you!!

Sent by Michelle Londt

Kerith was so helpful in organizing our trip to Mabula. I found her to be extremely knowledgeable and she answers our questions timeously. Kerith’s pricing was excellent. Well done Kerith!

Sent by Stacey Johnston

Kerith was unbelievably professional and efficient from the beginning of our booking process. Nothing is ever too much and she calmed my nerves and answered my millions of questions without hesitation. It has honestly been such a pleasure booking through her.

Sent by Rochelle Keene

Ann and I cannot thank you enough for sorting out the mess we made with booking tickets to Port Elizabeth return. We so appreciate the fact that you took this over and sorted it out brilliantly - just what we wanted. In these covid times, it's actually ridiculous to think we can manage flight bookings ourselves. And thank you also for doing this while you were away. We know you faced challenges for us, which makes us even more grateful to you. And of course thanks for the boarding passes - we clean forgot to check in! We will now always do our bookings with you. What a PLEASURE!! Thank you again.

Sent by Mary-Ann Glynos

Our Floral Fiesta trip was simply wonderful and a memorable experience. Thank you for putting it together for us at only one week's notice. The presentation of our itinerary was excellent and was full of useful information. Our accommodation was just what we like and we really appreciated your personal attention where you checked that we were indeed expected at our various stops. It went off without a hitch. Your final message to us at our last stopover presented with a tiny posy of flowers just rounded it all off beautifully. We have been telling all our friends about you!

Sent by Auralia Edwards

Wow. What an incredible experience! My travel life was made easier working through Kerith! Generally I stress about flights, bookings, checking in, delays etc. making sure everything works as it should. But this time it wasn’t the case at all. Everything was arranged for me. I highly recommend working with Kerith and I certainly look forward to arranging all my travels with her. Thank you again for creating memories. Xx

Sent by Stacey Yalan

If you need someone to help plan and design your trip here is the woman! She has such worldly knowledge she is amazing!

Sent by Astrid Wendelstadt

Kerith is extremely knowledgeable and helpful, and she went out of her way to get me the best possible deal.

Sent by Jess Cleland

I consider myself to be a bit of a travel pro, but even I know when to call in the real professionals... Kerith was fantastic in helping me from SA when I was stuck in Nairobi trying to sort out and rebook my flights for Bike 4 Paws. It's not often you book a one-way ticket to Guatemala, let alone end up having to book TWO one-way tickets to Guatemala. No thanks to SAA, their strike and cancelled flights... Based on today's experience I highly recommend Kerith's services!

Sent by Donna Macleod

We had so much fun and it's all been so easy with Kerith Hulme! All the online check-ins and transfers and unexpected American things like baggage allowance are taken care of - holiday with none of the admin!

Sent by Anitha Naidu

Working with Kerith Hulme as our tour organiser was an absolute breeze in the park. Being young, innovative and dynamic attracted her to the teenagers on tour. Parents felt comfortable and relaxed right from the start all the way through to the end. All tours and guides that were booked for us were professional and catered to the individual needs of the age group. The students thoroughly benefited from the knowledge that they gained. Kerith was able to plan the itinerary to perfectly cater for the needs of the students, as well as ensuring the staff had a smooth and easy time on tour.

Sent by Matthew Short

Just a very small note to say a very BIG thank you to you for all your help, best efforts and constant professionalism experienced this weekend. We had an amazing weekend in Cape Town and are just so grateful to you for all your help in assisting us with the flights and car rental. Everything was so smooth, seamless and professional. We sincerely look forward to booking our next trip with you in the near future and really so appreciate your work ethic, ‘can do’ attitude and hard work. #BestTravelAgentEver Have a great day and hope to see you soon. Thanks so much!