“I try not to make family gatherings all about the business,” says Bob Drinkhouse, owner of A Ambassador Travel in Phoenix, Ariz.
That’s not always easy when the business is a family affair. Drinkhouse started his travel agency in 1997 and brought his son on board in 2014, with his son-in-law following in 2016.
“There are plusses and minuses. It can be tough when you have to take a hard line at work, and then take them out to dinner for their birthday later that night,” Drinkhouse says. “On the other hand, they know what I want and how important it is to take care of the client.”
At A Ambassador, the agent handles all aspects of the client’s travel – from the initial planning, to taking that 2 a.m. phone call if something goes wrong. As an affiliate of Your Travel Center, which has relationships with preferred suppliers all over the world, the company is in a position to handle whatever comes their way. “You give the client more than they expect, and they’ll be with you forever.”
It’s a lesson he’s imparted to his son and son-in-law “It takes about three years to train an agent in the day-to-day workings of the industry, but both of them bought in to delivering more to our clients from the very start,” Drinkhouse says. “There are three families involved in the success of this business, so we don’t take anything for granted.”
By: Jenna Galagher