Chestermere is gaining a new business sure to please the traveler within us. Expedia CruiseshipCenters has pulled into the Chestermere Towne Square at Bay 16, 140 East Chestermere Drive.
The town has been without a travel agency for a few years leaving a gap in this service. With no local office travelers have resorted to internet bookings that are time consuming and often a gamble when it comes to finding the best value and experience.
At the helm in the new office is Manager and Owner Vicky Barzey who brings over 14 years experience to the table. She is partnering up with brother Marty Fulkerth from Chestermere and local business owner Jed Snatic in this new venture.
Barzey who had a banking background took her first cruise in 1999. From then on she was hooked and pursued a new career path by joining the St. Albert travel agency she had booked through. She has never looked back and now has 30 cruises under her belt. Her most recent journey through the industry led her to Sears Travel where she was ranked Number 1 in Western Canada. Barzey said coming back on board to offer her cruise expertise is like “coming home. ”
Expedia CruiseshipCenters is stepping forward to provide full service with superb client care not only in the Cruise Industry but in all aspects of travel from insurance, land, sea and air travel, including coach and rail tours, corporate sales to all inclusive packages. Barzey will be joined by fellow Travel Consultant Lorna Constantine as well as Dawn Pecharsky, Outside Sales Consultant working the Lacombe Market.
The passionate and knowledgeable Barzey said, “Out of the gate we already have 30 years combined experience and expect to hire more consultants by the year end. We expect to be with you before, during and after your holiday.”
The aim of ExpediaCruiseshipCenters is to make the entire vacation experience as easy, affordable and pleasurable as possible with a client focused approach. The agents will determine the needs of the client do the research and narrow down the choices. They believe they can find something for everyone and a bonus is that their network can access offers of reduced prices even after the original booking. “I was able to reduce one couple’s cruise cost by $300 each.” Said Barzey.
Cruising presently is leading the growth in leisure markets with 80% of its clients coming from North America. Albertans are the highest demographic group taking advantage of the cruise ship experience. This form of holiday has the highest repeat and highest satisfaction. One in 4 Canadians will use ExpediaCruiseshipCenters as their gateway to a cruise ship holiday.
“If you have never been on a cruise it may be surprising to see the level of service, amenities and entertainment,” said Barzey. Crew members are hard workers who act as family on board. She explained that there are cruises with full Broadway Shows, Stars on Ice on indoor Rinks, Dancing with the Stars contestants, just to name a few choices of the very high caliber entertainment provided.
Barzey is also quick to debunk the myths that cruises are too expensive, that motion sickness will ruin a holiday and that travellers will be bored. “We can find something for everyone. As far as queasy travellers, we put them in the center of the boat, have them face forward when travelling and give them tips on eating.”
The agency will also be able help groups who have specific requests for their vacation experience on board such as quilter retreats, business conferences, Moms and Tots, and even scrapbookers. Parents with babies as young as 6 months are now being accommodated giving families more options for vacation plans.
Access to all the major lines will be available including Princess, Ama, Celebrity, Waterways and the very popular River Cruises.
The new Expedia CruiseshipCenter opens its doors July 22. They hope to have ongoing travel shows at local venues throughout the year. Hours of business are Monday to Thursday 10AM to 6PM, Friday 10AM to 5PM and Saturdays 10AM to 4PM.
“It’s fine to browse the web and see what you can find, but before you hit the pay button call us and see what we can do.” It all comes back to service as Barzey explains, “You’re not going to get service coming out of a computer screen.” She jokes about her day with a paintbrush in one hand and the other picking up the phone to talk to a repeat customer looking for new holiday plans. Barzey along with her team are more than likely to provide a vacation experience that will keep you coming back for more and a vacation that starts before you leave her office.
For more information visit www.cruiseshipcenters.com/chestermere or call (403) 263-3500.