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Virtually Aloft

Updated: Jun 28, 2022

Such an edgy time right now. We’re in a holding pattern. Life as we know it is undergoing a seismic stoppage with no credible end in sight. Anxious and rattled, we’re managing shifts in our daily routines, incorporating new societal rules to stay safe. An unwelcome interlude, for sure.

So go my own prospects for travel. Halted. What’s an Irish adventurer/advisor to do? With disruption comes opportunity: get creative! Having trips recently cancelled to Peru, France and the Netherlands, I’ve pondered various ways forward. First: stay connected. My belief is that it will likely take us as long to recover from COVID-19 effects as it did to be impacted by them. When that happens, new days will dawn with tantalizing deals, especially to unexpected places. Suggestion: collaborate with family and friends about a future getaway. It’s fun to dream! Rely on me to keep you updated on relevant, useful information for planning these forthcoming journeys.

Next: be productive. I’ve enrolled in multiple supplier and destination certification programs, increasing my global knowledge to share smart travel info on desirable destinations and cruises. I aim to inspire others to think differently about trip planning. Consider: even non hikers and bikers can enjoy light adventure trips, offered across the US, throughout Canada, Europe and beyond. How about viewing the Northern Lights in Iceland, exploring Peru by train, taking cooking classes in Tuscany or Provence, or carriage rides to concerts in Vienna? Totally doable for anyone.

Cruises. Many are already thinking: Never again. Who wants to get stuck? Certainly, changes will and must be made, likely to include improved passenger processing measures, enhanced sanitation for ships, staff, crew and passengers, and perhaps most importantly, having a Plan B should any destination become inaccessible in critical situations. I am confident that cruising will bounce back stronger than ever, with necessary adjustments to assure an intrepid public. As a seafaring enthusiast, I’ve long maintained that cruising is a cost effective, time efficient and most comfortable means to visit multiple cities, unpacking once while enjoying outstanding cuisine, exotic cultures, and “spoil me” service.

In the aftermath, I expect a surge of interest close to home, with enticing, accessible USA-based vacations. So much wide open verdant space and vibrant cities to explore in our magnificent land! Think: secluded beaches, national parks, wellness and yoga retreats from Maine to California, Alaska wildlife viewing, or golf and tennis resorts countrywide.

I certainly can’t make any valid predictions, but having been in the travel business over 40 years and withstood the fallout from earthquakes, tsunamis, multiple economic recessions, and heartbreakingly, post 9/11, I’ve witnessed how volatility runs its course. We find new ways to adapt and recover. After each event, as our personal and social footing took hold, our travel senses were newly awakened to this truly awesome planet we inhabit. We’ve learned that by leaving home, we meet people so much like us – curious, friendly, helpful, engaging. For me, this is the essence of travel, forging new friendships and strategic alliances, being surprised by new discoveries, finding each trip better than imagined. Sharing these insights with others to boost their trip bliss is what sparks my own professional joy.

Though our takeoffs be paused, our passion need not be. I say strive to keep that wonder to wander alive, let’s fuel our inquisitive natures, plant ourselves in places we long to be. Our nomadic impulse is inherent in each of us. Let’s travel – and stay connected.

May your mornings bring joy and your evenings bring peace, may your troubles grow few as your blessings increase ~ Irish prayer

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