We had the good fortune of connecting with Maranatha Lee and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Maranatha, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
I have always wanted to start my own business since I was a kid. I used to ask for candle and jewelry making kits for Christmas or my birthday to create products to sell to family and neighbors. Pretty genius, right? Taking 100% of the profits. I would take the money I earned and use it on our annual vacations with our church group to purchase all the souvenirs I wanted. Traveling with our church group every year, sparked my interest in traveling. Because of those annual conferences, I’ve been to almost half of the United States. My traveling adventures have now expanded from domestic trips to Caribbean cruises, European and Asian vacations with 26 countries and counting! My sole purpose for starting Travel Queen, LLC is to share my love for traveling by creating personalized itineraries to make the most out of my clients’ vacations! I save my clients time and money by handling all of the research and collaborating with them to discover their travel needs. I take that information from our consultation to customize their dream vacation and simply leave them to enjoy their dream destination without the stress.
What should our readers know about your business?
My full-service planning sets me apart from other travel advisors. As a travel planner, Travel Queen offers personalized travel planning and concierge services. This saves you time and offers convenience leaving you to enjoy your adventures or relaxing vacation. We partner with the best hotels, excursions, sites, and experiences your destination has to offer in this post-COVID world while prioritizing your specific needs and desires. Our travel services will include booking accommodations, tours & excursions, and making dinner reservations at local restaurants to enrich your cultural experience. It’s always helpful to have vital information just in case when traveling out of the country such as embassy contact info, local pharmacy and hospital, cultural etiquette, and weather conditions. This information is included in each client’s personalized itinerary packet. At Travel Queen, we do all of the research to ensure that you have everything you need when vacationing to a new and exciting place! I am most excited for the new year! As countries are beginning to open up and people are becoming more comfortable to travel; I look forward to growing my clientele and creating memorable vacations. It has been challenging starting a travel business during a pandemic. I launched Travel Queen, LLC in January this year, and barely two months later the travel industry was at a standstill. I knew this set back would only be temporary as other countries will and have started to open to tourists again. Slowly but surely people are wanting to travel again rather if it’s locally in Texas or to the Caribbean. I have been lucky enough to book vacations for clients over the year and I remain positive that my business will continue to pick up. I have clients that are already making plans for future travels for 2021.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I am from Tyler, a small town in East Texas, and my friends are always visiting me in Dallas. I am known in our group of friends to always know where the best places to go to DFW. I actually have a list of my favorite restaurants divided by cities that I give to my friends and family when they are wanting to make a weekend getaway to Dallas. Dallas is notorious for amazing eateries and you can’t visit without experiencing Tex-Mex cuisine and BBQ. Uncle Julio’s is my go-to for Mexican food, they have the best queso and margaritas! Pro tip: visit the Grapevine location as they are the test kitchen and often have items on the menu that you can’t try at the other locations yet. And ask for the garlic butter to dip your enchiladas in! This year I discover Cattleack Barbeque and I am obsessed, to say the least! Their brisket is mouthwatering good. If you go, you have to order their mac and cheese and try the butter cake! You will not regret it and yes, it’s worth all of the calories. Some of my favorite areas to take people to are The Star, Legacy West, Bishop Arts, and Trinity Groves. All areas consist of great eats and drinks. Legacy West and Bishop Arts both have amazing shopping too. The Star is where Cowboys headquarters are, which is a must-see for Cowboys fans and non-fans and they offer tours of the facilities. Go Cowboys!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Being a new travel advisor to the travel industry, it’s very important to find a host agency that fits your needs. I am proud to be a part of KHM Travel, my host agency, really values their travel agents and it shows. I love that KHM Travel has an abundance of education programs that gives you a great jumpstart to starting your travel business. KHM also has a coaching program and provides one on one sessions available to assist their new advisors on getting accumulated. One of my reasons for selecting KHM as my host agency is because of their years of experience in the travel industry. KHM is well-respected and has numerous connections with other travel partners, this allows me to offer exclusive pricing to my clientele. I couldn’t have picked a better travel family to join!
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