Distinct Vacation Escapes
Kim has always had a passion for travel and a love of exploration. She earned a Masters of Global Management along with an MBA, and now through Distinctive Vacation Escapes, Kim loves to remove barriers and make vacations possible for every family.
Kim lives in California with her husband Matt and their two young kids, Ben and Caroline. When Kim found out about her children’s health issues, it brought both challenges and new insight and perspective into her life and her work. As her family learned to manage their kids’ health, she found vacations harder to take and yet even more necessary. She’s transformed this new understanding and awareness into a passion for helping every family take a vacation, no matter what barriers they may have to making their dreams come true.
By becoming a travel expert and starting Distinctive Vacation Escapes, Kim has found the perfect fit for her skills, business experience, and love of helping other people. She’s immensely grateful for the opportunity to be part of making vacations possible for every family and bringing to life the wide-eyed excitement and magic of the travel experience.
We Make Travel Easy
My passion for travel started in my childhood. We took family vacations, driving to interesting places every year. My first summer vacation as a teacher, I spent 9 weeks traveling around Europe on my own. That did it, I had the bug. I fantasized about becoming a travel photographer. Life went in different directions and I went from being a teacher to a real estate consultant, in the shopping center industry. I was also Director of Franchising for Papyrus Card shops and Blue Chip Cookies, before I started my own franchise consulting practice. All along, I continued to travel. I have been to every continent except Australia and the Antarctic (on my list).
In 2007, I started We Make Travel Easy. It was a part time business while I pursued other opportunities. The demand for my services increased to a point where I had to make a decision to devote my full time attention to the business.
In February of 2014, I attended a GIFTE workshop and met Meredith Hill and Vanessa McGovern. I felt very much in line with their business philosophy. It was clear to me that their mentorship and best business practices would be the support I needed to devote my full time attention to my travel business. In April of 2014, We Make Travel Easy became my full time occupation.
Since then, my business has grown dramatically; beyond individual travel and into group business. For 3 years in a row, I have been recognized as a top travel consultant in the San Francisco Bay area.
VIP Travel Experience
After nearly 12 years as a small business owner, Tammy closed her shop to pursue a more balanced life. After a short break, she again became a small business entrepreneur in the bookkeeping field, as well as teaming up with her brother Rob, to manage his travel agency, VIP Travel Experience LLC. Tammy has always been passionate about travel. In her scrapbook store, she taught classes focused on preserving travel memories, as well as hosting group travel and assisting family and friends with travel planning over the last 30 years.
Tammy is relatively new to this side of the travel business, and hopes that along with her experience as small business owner can represent the views and voice of other newcomers. She is very grateful for the assistance and fellowship since joining Gifted Travel Network over a year ago and is anxious to be of service and give back to this amazing and generous community.
Joan Qualls has turned her enthusiasm for travel into a business called Tasteful Voyages. Specializing in Culinary and Cultural experiences, Joan enjoys working with clients, crafting their perfect experience. Her love for Italy is deep; Joan believes she may been Italian in a past life. She has developed relationships with suppliers in Italy as well as stateside, ensuring that her clients’ voyages there will be unique, memorable and delicious! Joan’s goals for her business include developing JV relationships with businesses/clubs, to encourage group journeys with themes related to shared interests. Joan strongly believes in the importance of family travel and encourages families to travel, even with very young children, to foster world citizens. She and her husband, Richard, travel regularly with their 7 shared children.
Joan hails from Chicago but now resides in the San Diego area. She’s beginning to feel like Mooresville is home, too, and is very thankful to have been referred to the GTN MBA program by a very wise mentor. She recently completed the MBA program and has moved into TESA. Travel bucket list destinations include Australia/New Zealand, Iceland, Brazil, and Japan. Her favorite destinations (so far) include Italy (obviously!) Thailand, Cuba, Ireland, Alaska and Hawaii.
My entire career until 18 months ago was in finance and in particular hedge fund management. So it took me a long time to align my career with my real love for travel, but J5Travel was finally born to put that right.
If I can instill in my clients 10% of my enthusiasm for exploring this earth, everyone will be happy. I specialize in the luxury end of the market and am unique in willingly incorporating complicated flight and hotel award bookings into itineraries.
I combine this with my passion for finding the right fits for my client, with an attention to detail for every booking, right down to the ideal time for a restaurant reservation. Ideas are listened to, crafted and made to work. I offer a bespoke “travel tailor” service that will take all my clients worries away for any trip they may imagine.
My English accent, which I can’t shake despite living in USA for 14 years now, has not deterred any clients yet…
Elite Travel Designs
Kara grew up traveling extensively with her parents. One of her favorite things as a little girl was to go downtown on a Saturday afternoon with her parents to visit their travel agent. She was mesmerized by the destinations along with amazing energy between the agents and clients. After years in hotel and restaurant management, she felt the pull back into the travel industry. She worked as a leisure agent for an international travel agency before opening Elite Travel Designs in 2013. Today, Kara has taken the old fashioned storefront agency and transformed it with a modern twist. Clients who enter the storefront are personally greeted by one of the travel designers, offered a unique beverage and then treated to a private consultation in a sleek, inviting atmosphere. This consultation is the key to forming client relationships. Kara and her team create custom itineraries for discerning groups and individuals.
Lisa Rossmeissl, a certified Aussie Specialist, is owner and founder of Boomerang Escapes, a boutique travel agency built on her love and passion for Australia. Having moved since birth, living in nine different states, she has a natural wandering soul and built-in love for travel. She leverages her passion and love for travel to create unique vacation experiences for her clients that leave them transformed. She invites you to escape and “Return to Your Happy Place” and discover why, at Boomerang Escapes, they say “No worries, leave the planning to us!”