with Dee Naraine of New Wave Travel in Toronto

How long have you been in the business? Do I really have to say? Over 30 years!

What was your first job? I worked for Guyana Airways in my home country Guyana.

Do you have a specialty? FIT. My basic bread and butter are 50 high end luxury clients.

How has the business changed since you got into it? Oh, major. It was such a pleasure dealing with airline reps back then but nowadays with commission caps, debit memos…

If you could have any job in the business what would it be? I have what I would like. I’d still like to be a front line agent.

What was your best FAM? The Star Clipper to the Northern Caribbean. It was amazing.

What drives you crazy? (laughs). Too many changes – we’re not compensated for getting all that information for Homeland Security and other immigration authorities!

What was your biggest individual sale? $150,000. Two people who went to Australia for four weeks: first class air to get there ($16,000 per person – I’ll never forget that). With $1,200 per night hotels and then private planes it all adds up!

Do you have a magic sentence to close the sale? “And how would you like to pay for that?”

What do you do to keep your clients loyal? I treat them as family so even if they aren’t travelling I’ll call to see how they are doing, how the kids are doing.  And we socialize together.

What’s the best piece of advice you ever received? “Always be honest to yourself.”

If you had to spend six months in a destination, which one would you pick? India because I find it so fascinating.

If you weren’t doing this, what would you be doing? Maybe flying the planes?  I started out wanting to be a pilot all those years ago!

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