Cruise Planners, An American Express Representative, created the Armed Forces and First Responders Initiative Program with exclusive benefits for retired, active military and spouses of the community. The support, tools and award-winning travel agent training that is offered through this program are the perfect guide to effortlessly merge a military background with a passion for travel and achieve a successful business as a Cruise Planners travel agency franchise owner.
Travel Agency owners, Chris and Shelia Korte are both U.S. Army veterans that brought their military experience to Cruise Planners. Now as travel franchise owners based in Long Island, NY, the Korte’s share their journey and transition from the army to the travel industry in celebration of Military Spouse Day.
Shelia and Chris Korte, Cruise Planners franchise owners
based in Long Island, N.Y., on a cruise vacation in Tahiti
A Military Spouse Perspective on Starting a Travel Agency
How many years were you and your spouse in active military service?
Both Chris and I were in the Army for 3 years and 2 years respectively. We received an honorable discharge, Chris in 1977, and myself in 1976.
What factors contributed to becoming a Cruise Planners travel agency franchise owners?
We compared Cruise Planners with other travel companies and it came down to the Veterans discount offered at Cruise Planners. Since we joined Cruise Planners in 2010, we know that we made the right decision because we are part of a family. The franchise technology and support offered by Cruise Planners are second to none.
How do you share your experience with Cruise Planners to others with military experience looking to join a franchise?
We really recommend it to other Veterans or enlisted military members who are looking for an entrepreneurial option for the next stage of their lives after departing the military. For us, owning a Cruise Planners franchise has allowed us to have and maintain a work and family life balance. We truly love what we do and are able to make our own schedule and work when and where we want. We have plenty of time for leisure activities and time to spend with our family, friends and grandchildren.
How has your military background helped you succeed in the travel industry?
Our background in the military has given us the discipline to stick with our choice to purchase a franchise. We have been able to grow our business by sharing our story that we are both veterans. People like to support a veteran-owned business and with that seems to come immediate trust. Gaining trust is one of the biggest hurdles in growing your business. In our signature line, website and every PR piece we always include the phrase, “Veteran-Owned Business.” Doing this has helped us build strong relationships with people throughout the country. With the can-do military training and background that we had, we knew that failing or quitting the business was never an option.
Are you a veteran or a member of the armed forces and first responder community interested in turning your passion for travel and entrepreneurship into a successful and rewarding career? Contact call 888-582-2150 or visit www.CruisePlannersFranchise.com for more information about Cruise Planners’ Armed Forces and First Responders Initiative Program.