WAUKESHA — A Waukesha woman decided to travel a new path, which included going into business for herself.
Emily Schultz, the owner of Magic Mom Travel, launched her agency in June.
Previously she worked as a travel agent for seven years, serving the southeastern Wisconsin area. Schultz enjoyed making new connections through servicing clients’ vacations.
“After seven years I was doing things all on my own. I had my client base and it was going well,” Schultz said.
She then made the decision to launch Magic Mom Travel.
Schultz specializes in Disney and Universal Studio destinations. She also books cruises, Hawaii, Mexico, and Caribbean travel.
Before she got into the travel planning industry, Schultz was a hair stylist. She was going to Disney World all the time and soon people were turning to her for help with travel plans.
“I love going there and my friends were coming to me all the time for advice. I was helping them plan their trips but not working with an agency,” she said. After a while she felt she should be doing this professionally.
Schultz credits the Waukesha Small Business Association with help starting Magic Mom Travel.
“They helped me a lot with setting up. It can be overwhelming. Having them there is very reassuring, she said.
She enjoys meeting new families and her goal is to build more relationships as she builds her business.
A travel agent’s advice
Schultz encourages people to give travel agents like herself a try. There is a myth that travel agents cost a ton of money and they are out to get people to spend more.
“When there are new promotions released, I go through every single reservation to see if I can find one that fits,” she said.
For her clients, she insists on a consultation call first. She said it gives potential clients an idea about her personality and her a better feel of the trip they want to take.
“My experience and attention to detail can help save you time, money, and hassle.
“I have been serving the southeastern Wisconsin area for many years, and have enjoyed making new connections through servicing my client’s dream vacations,” she said.
Schultz said she is finding many people preferring travel agents over third-party online travel booking. There are often perks a travel agent may be aware of or specials that other places like third-party sites may not know about or access to. A travel agent knows about fees a resort might charge.
“There is a ton of information online and can be overwhelming when you search for Mexico and get 1,200 hotels,” she said.
A travel agent also knows how to filter out hotels that aren’t great. Schultz said she can tell clients what hotels are recommended.
A travel agent helps clients to narrow down the list and the ones that are a better fit for the client and their family, she said.
During the pandemic, some third-party sites weren’t as reliable with getting guests’ refunds, according to Schultz.
“Anyone who booked with a travel agent was more protected and had someone advocate for them,” Schultz said.
She said she has noticed an increase in people booking with travel agents.
“It isn’t only because someone will advocate for you but also will do the dirty work of staying on the phone for hours on hold,” Schultz said.
The mom and travel agent has dealt with recent news about flight cancellations due to pilot shortages and other factors.
“It is hard to get ahold of airlines because they are understaffed. It is long hold times. I really push travel insurance,” Schultz said.
Travel insurance wasn’t something pushed on vacation packages until the pandemic started. “It gives that peace of mind when people are traveling if their flight gets delayed or need reimbursement on rental cars if they have to drive there,” she said.
Travel insurance has helped her to assist clients with travel headaches and helps the guests in their situations.
A travel agent will also keep up to date on travel restrictions and what is changing. This is especially helpful for people who book cruises since there are rules and regulations that are constantly changing.
Schultz said her clients are also asking about coronavirus vaccine and mask mandates.
“I wouldn’t say it is swaying people one way or the other. A lot of people really just want to get out,” she said.
For more information https://magicmomtravel.com.