Interview with travel entrepreneur Lorna Rose from Your WorldPosted on 01/05/2018 by Jess O'Connor
Have you ever wondered what it’s like to run a travel business? Do you dream of being self-employed and travelling the world?
Lorna Rose is living this dream. She’s the founder of Your World, a bespoke travel planning service.
Your World is different from traditional travel agencies because it’s completely independent. It’s not affiliated with any hotels, tourism operators or airlines, so all the trips that Lorna and her team plan are based purely on quality, price, and extensive independent research.
Lorna spends her days planning trips for clients all over the world. She also travels a lot and gets to call it work.
We recently interviewed Lorna to find out what it’s like to run a travel business. Read on for some great tips on being self-employed in this exciting industry.
What inspired you to start Your World?
We all have something we’re passionate about, that we look forward to, that we never tire of – for me, travel is exactly that. I’ve been exploring the globe for as long as I can remember. Now I get to travel every few weeks for Your World, and it still feels exciting.
My inspiration for Your World stems from my passion for travel. Over the years, I’ve naturally become the ‘go to’ person within my network to help people find a good travel deal or information on the places they want to visit.
I did a lot of research before starting Your World. I looked at the market and saw a gap for a completely independent, bespoke travel planning service where the traveller, not the commission, is the drive behind the itinerary. I wanted to create something different to shake the travel market up – and the feedback I get is that Your World does exactly that.
What do you love most about working in the travel industry?
Talking about and doing this amazing thing that I love, all day long. I’ve found that it doesn’t matter where you are or whom you are, everyone loves to talk about their favourite destination, upcoming travel plans or best holiday moments. This is an amazing industry with a very diverse range of options. It really can take you to some amazing places.
What’s your favourite thing about working for yourself?
My job is so varied, I never know what kind of travel enquiry a phone call or email is going to bring. Some days it might be a group trip that I’ll end up working on for weeks or months. Other days it’s an urgent trip for the next day or week. I love that I have the ability to mix things up.
Other joys I get from working for myself include flexibility around my hours. I’m able to work from anywhere I can get online. I get to travel the globe for work and meet interesting people. I’m genuinely very happy because I get to do what I love second-best to travel – and that’s planning travel for other people.
What are some challenges of being self-employed?
Marketing, particularly social media marketing, is not my strength so I’ve had to learn about that kind of thing pretty quickly.
Another challenge has been around educating people on our business model. Your World is breaking the mould in New Zealand on the way travel is planned, so getting people to understand that and buy into what we do did take some time – but we’ve started to see a lot of progress.
It’s really inspiring when we come across someone who gets it straight away. It’s lovely to see their faces light up as they realise the benefits of this model.
What does a typical day look like for you?
My day doesn’t follow any set pattern for a number of reasons:
- I’m usually juggling a couple of projects at any one time
- My clients are all over the world, so I receive a lot of emails overnight
- I’m often attending industry events or expos
- I’m in a different country every few weeks
But, I can tell you what I did today to give you an insight:
7am – I’m up and raring to go. The official start to my work day always begins with coffee and fruit while I check the Your World social media.
7.30 – I spent an hour reading and responding to work emails, noting things I need to follow up on for my clients.
8.30 – This morning is particularly busy with receiving and making phone calls.
10.15 – 15.30 – I head downtown for meetings with my CBD-based clients, followed by a coffee with one of our consultants to discuss some upcoming work and set the agenda for a team meeting. Then it’s a site visit at one of the hotels. After, I have a 40 minute break between appointments so I hide away at The Shelf on High Street to answer some more emails. Walking between each meeting, I’m on the phone sorting out quotes, travel enquiries and checking out itineraries.
15.30 – When I’ve finished my city appointments, I head to the gym. While I’m driving to and from the gym, I have my phone on hands-free so I can return work calls and make audio notes summarising today’s meetings.
16.45 – Refreshed and reset, I’m back on my laptop doing admin – paying invoices and updating financials. I also continue researching some locations, accommodation, flights, transport and activities.
18.30 – I’m out again at a business event.
21.00 – I head home and I’m on the phone with overseas operators and hotels getting verbal and written confirmations. I take calls from my overseas clients and spend time chatting so I can get an understanding of who they are, their likes and dislikes, and their brief for the trip.
22.30 – My work day is finished. Time for bed!
What tips do you have for someone who wants to start their own travel business?
Do lots and lots of research into your chosen field. And don’t ever stop researching. Then create a good business plan, have a lot of conviction and go for it. You need to believe in your business and most importantly, in yourself, because you will have times when you wonder ‘did I do the right thing?’. It’s also important to surround yourself with a good support system.
I would also say that you need to keep learning from other people. Ask them what worked and didn’t work for them. Learn from their stories so you don’t make the same mistakes. I suggest attending as many industry events as you can – and if you can get a good business mentor, even better.
Do you have any tips for people wanting to join the travel industry in general?
The buzz phrase of the moment is ‘understanding your why’ and it really does matter. Understand why you want to join the industry. Understand what the story is behind your love for travel. Let that be the passion that drives you and just do it!
Lastly, do you have a favourite motivational quote you’d like to share?
I sure do – ‘What’s meant for you, won’t go by you’. My mum has said this to me my whole life, and it’s so true. It’s simply about the timing of what happens in your life, whether it’s good or bad – it’s happened for a reason.Posted in News, Study inspiration | Leave a reply