866 words/6:30 minutes to read

In this piece from Kymm Townsend, she discusses her history as a travel advisor, and the many different roles she has filled, all while sharing some of her best memories and sharing insightful and useful information for any travel enthusiast. If you see something you like from this piece, give Kymm a call and see what she can do for you!

I should have known I would work in the hospitality industry as my mother was an original Harvey Girl here in Albuquerque, and she worked at the airport in the famous Kachina Room which was one of the best restaurants in Albuquerque.

Right out of high school I went to work for Thrifty Car Rental and rented cars to Superman Christopher Reeve, Linda Ronstadt, and Val Kilmer just to name a few. I wanted to stay in the travel industry so I went to an air and travel trade school in Phoenix Arizona.

From there I went to work for American Airline Vacations selling air and hotel packages all over the world. My specialty was the Caribbean Islands, Mexico, and Hawaii. Some of my favorite familiarization trips were to San Juan, Puerto Rico and Maui.

Traveling with my 3 sons, Vincent – 33, Brandon – 20, and Jeremy 18 are some of my best memories. 

Most of my work with family travel has been done on escorted motorcoach tours.

For example, Yellowstone with Trafalgar Tours stands out the most. Waking up to the Tetons watching moose in the distance and bald eagles flying above.

Insight Vacations did not disappoint in the least. I have great memories of Sedona, Bryce Canyon, and the Grand Canyon. I believe the Grand Canyon has an essence of spiritual healing. Everywhere you look is magical. I could not take my eyes off the canyon as I was afraid I would miss a beautiful memory slip by me.

Insight Vacations took me to San Francisco where we escaped from Alcatraz and walked over the Golden Gate Bridge. Visiting the wineries of Napa as we drove down the coast.

Maybe I was a hippy in another life. As we visited Haight-Ashbury I pictured myself hanging out with Janice Joplin and Jimi Hendrix.

The best thing about traveling escorted is that you don’t have to worry about driving, your tour guide is with you the whole trip, teaching you about all the history and sights along the way. You don’t have to wait in long lines for excursions or museums as most of the time you have separate access or a VIP entrance. Many tour companies offer you dinner with a local family or restaurant to take in the local flavors.

Being a Tauck Academy certified agent I was able to experience some trips of a lifetime.

Tauck Tours is one of the best tour companies in the world offering exclusive one-of-a-kind itineraries, top tour directors, and the best hotels in each destination.  I have had the honor of traveling to some of Tauck’s best locations such as the Canadian Rockies, Best of Australia, Alaska, Paris, London, and Costa Rica. Most of my Tauck tours have been on their Bridges product which is the main focus for multi-generational family travel.

I have traveled to Galapagos with National Geographic on the Ship Endeavor, swimming with marine iguanas, seals, and turtles were at the top of my bucket list. I cannot believe how much I learned! Having expert naturalists with you the whole time is great, while they educate you on the animals, food, and destination.

As well, I have experienced some amazing river cruises with AMAWaterways, Uniworld, and Viking. I would have to say I could not pick a favorite between the Danube and the Rhine as they both have such beauty and history all their own. The best thing about river cruising is docking right up to the city centers and being able to experience each town which is just a few steps away. It’s a floating resort, with most ships not holding over 190 passengers.

As for the larger cruise ships I have experienced sailing on Azamara Quest and the sister ship, the Pursuit.

Both are small ships (for cruise lines) and offer all-inclusive itineraries on board. As well, the shore excursions with longer overnight stays on most itineraries will keep you busy.

My favorite new adventure is going to be group travel. I have escorted a few groups with Viking on the Grand European. Last December I was able to set up my son’s destination wedding in Cancun at the beautiful Hyatt Zilara.

My other group was a fitness trip I took with members from my gym which included Yoga on the beach, water aerobics, and city walks.

Travel makes memories, and experiencing new foods, cultures, religions, and lifestyles all add so much to our lives. When you can share these experiences with your family and friends they stay with you forever. A lifetime of memories!

My favorite thing about being a travel advisor is not only am I able to travel the world and share my experiences every day, but I also am always learning something new. Making travel memories is what I do best.

Get in touch with Kymm at kymm@awtravel.com
Or call at 505-294-5031 Ext. 235

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