Today we’d like to introduce you to Valerie Anderson.
Valerie, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I got the travel bug early, after graduating from high school in New York, I married young, became a military wife and mom. We werestationed in Vicenza, Italy, which was a long way from home. It felt a little scary at first traveling so far away from my family and friends. After living in Italy for 4 years, I was intrigued by the experience of seeing how other cultures lived. Once I moved back to the states, I felt like something was missing. I realized I had the desire to travel every few months, so I saved my money and did just that.
Years later, I moved to Atlanta, GA. After a lay-off in 2005, I decided I needed a back-up plan and wanted to do something that I enjoyed. I received my certification in event planning from Kennesaw State’s continuing education program. I started planning events and Essential Coordination was birthed. As an event planner, my clients would have out of town guest who were in need of hotel accommodations, flight arrangements and transportation services in order to attend their special occasion. My recommendations were based on my personal experiences. Through networking, I became friends with a wedding planner that introduced me to travel from the entrepreneurial side. This allowed me to add destination events to my business. In 2012, I renamed my company Essential Coordination & Travel.
Has it been a smooth road?
It has not been a smooth road. Though event coordinating and travel are my passion, there are levels to this business. In the beginning, I was so excited that people wanted to use my services, I would take everyone’s requests. This resulted in many sleepless nights of research and creating packages without many confirmed bookings. I decided I needed to come up with a game plan if I wanted my business to have longevity. I had to decide what I wanted my business to represent, how I can use it to help others and what would make me stand out amongst the competition. I had to come up with a niche.
So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the Essential Coordination & Travel story. Tell us more about the business.
Who is Essential Coordination & Travel? Essential Coordination & Travel is an independently owned, event and luxury travel company. We provide service that will exceed your expectations! We help organizations and individuals create unique and memorable events through creative travel planning and professional execution. We are committed to providing undivided attention to details. We specialize in luxury travel, groups and destination weddings.
This business has opened a whole new world to me. I get to see the world and help others plan their dream vacations and events. Travel is my life and I love to help others experience it. To my clients, I am known as the “Dream Specialist”. My goal is to create memorable experiences, as they travel the world to destinations they’ve always dreamed of. Just seeing the enjoyment on their faces in photos and hearing their travel stories makes me know this is what I am destined to do.
How do you think the industry will change over the next decade?
I believe more people will go back to using travel advisors. There’s nothing like the ability to interact with an experienced, well-traveled person who can answer your questions, assist you with your individual needs, save you the time of researching and add value to your travel experience. Personal customer service never goes out of style and you just won’t receive that from the internet. Our motto is “The Love is in the Details”.
- Website: www.essentialcoordinationandtravel.com
- Phone: 678.772.0264
- Email: email@example.com
Flying dresses: Photographer – Alek Chaltcev, Dresses – Miami Dress Photo