Travel Hound

By Heidi Kerr
The Surveyor

Some jobs are more fun than others, and being a travel agent is definitely one of those jobs.  Kina Palmer and her husband Leon moved to Berthoud in September of 2009.  The couple relocated from Boulder, where Leon worked for University of Colorado and Kina worked for Destination Travel.

Palmer has been a travel agent for nearly 12 years. Three years ago, she decided to open her own travel company.  At the time, Palmer was showing the couples’ champion Wirehaired Pointing Griffon, so Palmer decided to name her company Travel Hound.  She now works out of her Berthoud home and travels to her clients — either their homes or a local coffee shop — to help them plan their vacation.

The majority of Palmer’s customers are return clients, and her forte is setting up vacation packages.  With the rise of the Internet, you might think travel agents are a thing of the past, but you’d be wrong.  “There’s actually been a return to travel agents lately,” said Palmer. The fact is, the Internet is impersonal, and many people enjoy the one-on-one relationship they develop with their travel agent.

“A lot of my clients will look online because they love to do their own research, but once they find what they are looking for they will have me go through and do the whole booking because I can fine-tune it for them.  Also, if there’s any problem I can take care of it without them spending hours and hours trying to take care of it themselves,” explained Palmer.

Palmer also has an Internet site for her clients to utilize, called www.travelhound.us. “I can’t help as much with my Internet site,” explained Palmer, but she likes to have the option available for clients.

Although many of us feel we are getting the best price when booking on the Internet, this is not always the case.  Just recently, clients came to Palmer.  They were having a problem with a cruise they had booked through the Internet. To their surprise, Palmer was able to fix the glitch as well as save them $150.

“My job is to find the best deal,” stated Palmer.  She went on to explain, for economic reasons, many tour operators she works with are now price-matching, which also helps travel agents match or beat online deals.

Palmer’s expertise not only saves her clients money, but also time.  People can spend hours putting a vacation together, while Palmer can do it quickly and efficiently.  Peace of mind is another important feature offered by a travel agent. When booking on the Internet, travelers often know very little about the trip they have purchased.  Palmer has traveled to many places and has been on numerous cruises, and her experiences and input are invaluable to her clients.

Cruise packages are always popular, but right now world travel is on many vacation planners’ agendas.  “Right now I’m working on packages to New Zealand, Japan, Europe, Israel and, of course, Mexico.  Mexico is always popular because it’s such an easy get-away from Colorado,” explained Palmer.

Though she has traveled the world and taken many “trips of a lifetime,” Palmer says Hawaii is probably her specialty.  “I just love the Islands,” said Palmer.

“I’ve also learned a lot about Mexico over the years.  As a travel agent you have to get to know the resorts down there,” said Palmer, who also feels very confident booking her clients fantastic cruises.

Some of her own most unforgettable travels have included Tahiti, Fiji, Egypt, Europe and cruising in Alaska. One of her favorite trips was to Fiji.  “Fijian people are probably the friendliest people we have met in our travels.  It’s a genuine friendliness too,” said Palmer.

If you’d like to learn more about how Kina Palmer can help you plan the perfect vacation, call Travel Hound at 303-902-8567 or e-mail her at travelhound@comcast.net.

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One Response to “Berthoud Weekly Surveyor Article”

  1. Ha! I just googled you and this came up! Your new site is lookin’ good!

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