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Sandra Cottam McLemore is a travel industry expert and TV host based in LA.

 

She can be seen on inflight TV, cruise line channels, Huffington Post, and is often profiled in airline inflight magazines, travel websites and lifestyle magazines as a world travel expert.

 

She has worked in the travel industry for over 19 years for airlines, cruise lines, TV networks and media agencies.

 

Sandra also runs Village Girl Marketing, a boutique marketing agency for travel brands specializing in content creation and design. She speaks regularly at travel industry events around the world and in 2018 will launch her new travel magazine. 

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4 TIPS FROM A PRO - HOW TO ORGANIZE THE BEST GROUP TRAVEL EXPERIENCE

Traveling is a wonderful experience and can be that more enjoyable when you share a trip with friends or not! With proper planning, you and your friends can have the trip of a lifetime and remain, friends, after you land back at your destination.

 

 

 

Someone has to lead

 

It would be nice if the entire group could plan the trip, but that’s not likely to happen. Every group, even your group of friends is not immune from common group dynamics. There’s the natural leader, the group organizer, the person who makes sure that everyone has fun and let’s face it, some aren’t going to do anything but show up.

 

To have the trip of a lifetime, play to everyone’s strength during the planning phase. Let the natural leader lead, let the organizer take care of the details, but all of you discuss and finalize all the options so not just one person is doing all the work. This will also help alleviate any hurt feelings if things on the trip don’t go as some would have preferred.

 

Set a Budget

 

Setting the budget for a trip can be a challenging process since everyone will have different expectations for the trip. But a budget needs to be set on things like accommodations, so they are no surprises once you arrive. Some experiences like excursions, spa services, and special activities can be left up to the individual. Consider sharing a pool of money for food so you won’t have to worry about splitting the bill everywhere you go.

 

First Things First - Book Flights and Travel Early

 

For the sake of your big group, it’s best to book flights and ground transportation early. As your travel date approaches, space fills up, and there may not be room for your entire group not to mention prices can increase drastically. In keeping with your agreed upon budget, book early.

 

It’s better to plan things like ground transportation and how you’ll travel to and from places like the airport and hotel. Download apps now if you’re going to use ridesharing services.

 

Time Apart

 

Just because you’re traveling as a group doesn’t mean you have to spend every waking moment together! Your group is likely made up of extroverts and introverts and subgroups may form within the main group, and that’s okay. It’s still your vacation; you just happen to be sharing with friends so enjoy yourself.

 

 

 

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