What are FAM Trips
& Site Inspections anyway?
A FAM Trip
is short for Familiarization trip. These trips are offered
by suppliers to travel agents so that they can experience
their products and services firsthand. Often carried
out on fam trips, site inspections allow travel agents
to inspect or study their products and services.
Cruise ships, hotels, and other suppliers want you to
become familiarized with different room categories,
amenities, facilities, and even food choices. Inspections
can be formal, which are conducted by your host, or
you can carry out one yourself at your leisure.
Who offers Travel Agent
Discounts & why?
First, I have some great
news, almost every supplier extends some sort of discount
to travel agents. There is still some pretty stiff competition
among suppliers whereby they still rely on travel agents
in selling and promoting their business. The discounts
can range from 10-75% off their published rates or even
Comped (complimentary). These discounts
can be offered by hotels & resorts, tour companies,
bed & breakfasts, spas, car rentals, airlines, attractions,
restaurants, golf courses, kayaking, fishing charters,
and almost anything your clients may want to experience
while they are traveling.
Many suppliers find it
time consuming and costly to advertise their products
& services (even to Travel Agents). Fam Trips provide
suppliers with what is still the best form of advertisement
- Word of mouth. For little cost to the supplier they
can promote their business to frontline agents who can
sell their products. Indeed, clients count on travel
agents for expertise and advice that only firsthand
knowledge can provide.
Agents can use valuable
fam experiences to create custom tour itineraries and
even use personal photos to showcase destinations and
suppliers. Therefore, its almost essential that
travel agents attend fam trips to enhance their professional
development. Consequently, fam trips are often the cornerstone
of relationship building between the agent and suppliers.