VIP Traveler is the best new travel planning tool you didn’t know you needed

VIP Traveler is the best new travel planning tool you didn’t know you needed

Traveling will take you to the highest peaks. Planning? The lowest of the lows.

First you have to figure out where exactly to go, book your flights, find accommodation and, of course, not least how to finance said flights and accommodation. Now throw in all the added hurdles of traveling in a post-pandemic world: premium airfares and lots of cancellations and delays. It’s stressful enough to make you wonder if all that rest and relaxation on the other end is worth it.

Enter the VIP traveler. VIP Traveler is a new and free subscription service that uses “proprietary personalization technology to ensure the right trips reach the right people” — not unlike Stitch Fix. (For the uninitiated, Stitch Fix is ​​a personal styling service that offers users a completely customized experience thanks largely to a sign-up survey. VIP Traveler works more or less the same way.)

Masai Mara sand river

A river of sand in the Masai Mara at Elewana Camp

A river of sand in the Masai Mara at Elewana Camp

To test it out, I signed up for the free version of VIP Traveler. The survey includes 20 questions, which are obviously meant to create a profile of the traveler. Examples: “How do you usually fly when traveling for pleasure?” “How much would you spend per night at a resort?” “What kind of hotels do you usually stay at?” “How does your work schedule affect your travels?” “When you travel for fun, who do you travel with?” and the line “Would You Rather”. It then closes by asking you what destinations you’ve wanted to visit.

I keep my answers honest: I’m pretty middle ground as travelers go. When I travel for pleasure, I almost always fly economy. I don’t stay in hostels, I stay in 5 star resorts. I use my points to travel, but I’m not quite “The Points Guy”. I travel with my partner, family and friends depending on the occasion, but sometimes I also travel alone. Destinations I have wanted to visit include cities in Australia, Italy, Africa and Greece.

I say all this because, at least in my experience, there are plenty of travel planning tools for budget travelers and just as many for luxury travelers, but not nearly as many as just…regularly travelers. Of course VIP Traveler isn’t necessarily one of those categories, I just want to say that I’m really holding my breath for my results.

Northern Lights with Ocean Diamond

Northern Lights with Ocean Diamond

Diamond of the ocean

However, my first set of recommendations included two of my all-time favorite cities and two others I’ve wanted to visit for a long time, neither of which I had mentioned in the survey, along with a full list of accommodations and attached deals that kept said accommodations firmly within my budget. The following week, to my pleasant surprise, I received my new “Travel Finds” with all the new destinations, which again seemed very much to my taste. I couldn’t believe how good it felt to know although I still haven’t booked anything and then let them get more data. According to Josh Borenstein, co-founder of VIP Traveler, it’s just that.

“It’s where you come when you want a trusted ‘travel buddy’ – someone to guide you when you need inspiration, advise when you want something less than a specific destination or hotel, and help you get the best.” of the trip when you decide where to go,” Borenstein says. “By that we mean not only the best prices, but also the benefits of not being an anonymous Kayak booker or booking in the cold. When you book with us, you’ll be taken care of.”

Borenstein, on the other hand, is no stranger to the travel space. In addition to being an avid traveler himself, he also co-founded a company that specialized in flash memory with a special focus on travel. However, his ultimate goal was always to create a business that “made it easier for people to travel more and discover parts of the world that maybe hadn’t been on their radar, but to do it in a really different way. old.” He claims that this method is mostly broken anyway.

“There’s too much content and too much time spent looking at options, and it’s hard to decipher the nuanced truth from review sites. “We thought there was a way to personalize the travel booking experience by combining proprietary technology with the human touch of our associated ‘travel stylists,'” says Borenstein.

Radisson Blu Resort Maldives Villas.

Radisson Blu Resort Maldives Villas

Radisson Blue Resort

Furthermore, he adds, “The situation on the ground is changing every week, both in terms of regulations and how hotels are dealing with the pandemic. Some hotels have declined in terms of maintenance and are unable to attract good staff, while others are ruining it. It is convenient to know who is who. Plus, the flexibility of our ‘buy now, travel later’ options with free date changes and cancellations gives you even more choice.

This choice only increases with the VIP Traveler+ option, which gives members access to on-site destination experts for local advice, a personal travel stylist for customized trip planning, 24/7 support and VIP benefits with all bookings. While it’s certainly not the best option for travelers on a budget, for those who fly even a few times a year, it’s worth the (what some might argue) high price of admission (currently $495 per year). In fact, according to Borenstein, your first trip with a VIP Traveler+ membership will likely pay off.

“Not only in terms of access to the best rates, but also in terms of the experience we offer, access to options you never knew existed and the ease with which you can contact us about the little details that you would never be able to find out on your own or through a traditional online travel agent ,” he says. “Even members belonging to platinum credit card travel providers cannot offer on-the-spot advice or negotiate individual treatment on your behalf.”

And if you’re not in the market to book a trip? It’s also a great one-stop shop for travel inspo. In addition to your weekly “Travel Finds,” there’s a bucket list feature that lets you specify destinations you want to visit. That’s what inspired Borenstein’s upcoming trip to the new Buahan by Banyan Tree in Ubud, Bali. (“There’s literally nothing like it in the world, and we’ve got an incredible opening offer.”) And probably why, I can’t stop dreaming about my trip to Corfu.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.