Louise Pond is no stranger to travel or business. A keen travel enthusiast, she and her partner love taking regular holiday breaks exploring and seeing other parts of the world. After leaving a wonderful career in retail fashion to start a family, Louise transformed her passion for travel into a business and is now an independent travel agent. She is the proud Founder/Owner of Louise Pond Travel. Recently, the team at Herts Review got chatting with Louise about her business and the travel industry.
Louise Pond Travel is a Hertfordshire based independent travel agency that can source some of the best holiday packages thereby saving you time, stress and money. Many UK adults are time-poor juggling work, home schooling and other activities. As a mum and entrepreneur, wearing many hats and juggling many tasks, Louise believes there is a gap in the market to help other busy people like her find the best travel solutions for their budget.
“I am passionate about travel. When I signed up to be an independent travel agent, my initial goal was to take advantage of discounts I could get for myself. It was about saving money from my travels and getting rewarded as well. Eventually, I extended this service to family and close friends. It worked out very well and I thought why not help as many people as I possibly can.”
“Before I had my son, most of my time was focused on work. I was an Area Manager with a big team and lots of responsibilities. So, I have been there and completely understand that a lot of people are busy every day. With our busy lives, who wants to spend hours online searching for the best packaged holiday that is a good fit for their budget? Well, I am saying that you don’t have to. Leave it with me and I’ll do all the work for you.”
Whether you are after a short break, luxury break, group bookings, packaged holidays, cruise, ski break or a UK staycation, Louise Pond Travel can find the perfect deal for you within your budget. While the current travel restrictions to limit the spread of covid-19 had led to limited travel, it is expected that once we get through this phase, there will be a surge in demand for holidays and travel. Now is the time to get that holiday and have something to look forward to.
There are a lot of holiday deals and travel packages available right now. Many airlines, tour operators and hotels are extending their booking dates. For some airlines, you could book 18 or 24 months ahead. Some cruise operators are also taking bookings for 2024. Louise is advising that you get your dates arranged and your trip booked as soon as possible. With a lot of flexibility with bookings, you can cancel and get your money back if your situation changes. It is even better when you book through her agency.
Now a full-time mum after leaving a 12-year career in fashion retail, Louise was looking for an opportunity that offered freedom and flexibility. “Although I loved my job, it would have been very difficult to carry on with all that responsibility while also giving my young son the care he needs. I was an Area Manager looking after 45 stores. The travel alone would take me away from home. I just couldn’t do it. So while on maternity leave I had to decide on what I was going to do next. Something I am passionate about but gives me that flexibility. For me travel is it.”
Louise came across an opportunity to build a business as an independent travel agent, got through the training and certifications and launched her agency. She is an affiliate of InteleTravel, the US-based global travel management company that partners leading hotel and resort operators and key players in the hospitality industry. When you book a holiday or travel package through Louise Pond Travel, it is processed on the InteleTravel system and they offer 24-7 support and great customer service.
Louise Pond Travel is also ABTA certified. ABTA is the trade association for UK travel agents and tour operators. It offers protection over customer payments to travel agents. Therefore, more safety and security to clients dealing with travel agents.
“I love the flexibility that I can work from anywhere at any time of the day without compromising my service to my clients. Over the last few years, I have observed that people are spending more time on experiences than on physical items. So I see a lot of opportunity for growth for my agency.”
“We are all going through a tough time right now but we will get through this. I am positive about the future. In the next 12 months, I would like to have provided more clients with hassle-free holidays and help more families travel smarter while taking advantage of some great travel offers I have access to. I also run a special deal of the day or week on my social media platforms”
“Don’t be frightened to travel! There are better days ahead. Get something booked today”
Contact Louise Pond Travel via email firstname.lastname@example.org or on Instagram @theponderingsofme.
The series of lockdowns in the UK due to the Covid-19 pandemic may be taking a toll on you, getting away from it all might be one of the things on your mind.
Where do you want to go? Tried booking a flight online? Are the options overwhelming? Can’t find the right deal that works for you and your family? Well, LevarTravel may have a solution for you.
LevarTravel is an independent travel agency offering personalised travel options across all budgets. As travel experts, they search for the best deals that match your budget thereby saving you money and time. Whether you are considering a holiday or a short break in the UK or abroad, LevarTravel can find the best holiday packages meaning you enjoy a fun-filled and relaxing break.
The founder of LevarTravel, Jamie McKay spoke briefly with Herts Review outlining why he started the travel agency and the plans for the next year.
Jamie has worked in the hospitality industry for some years. He is part of commercial sales team responsible for hospitality and sponsorship at Watford Football Club at Vicarage road. For Jamie, working for a football club is what he always wanted to do. “It was always my dream to work for a football club. When the opportunity came up I jumped at it. I sell matchday packages, hospitality tables, 5-star lounge and sponsorship packages [front of shirt or LED boards]. I make sure our guests have a great experience when they visit the stadium for events or on match days.”
“Working for Watford Football Club has been a great introduction into the hospitality industry and I have always wanted to add travel to the package. With my job, I travelled for sales and promotions projects around the world. Obviously, with the current restrictions on movement, the club’s hospitality programme has slowed down for now.”
“Offering travel packages to footballers and my clients in hospitality is an option I working on now. I offer travel and holiday packages to anyone and everyone irrespective of their budget. As an independent travel adviser, I can contact hotels and short-lets to discuss deals for my clients. So my focus isn't only high net worth individuals. “
LevarTravel is affiliated to InteleTravel, the US-based, global international travel management company serving all 7 continents. InteleTravel has over 49 partners and access to some of the best holiday and travel deals around the world. They also run a secure platform for all bookings and transactions. Therefore, when you book any holiday or travel package through LevarTravel, all payments are processed on the InteleTravel system with 24-7 support if there are any issues. It is a safe and completely seamless process.
LevarTravel is also ABTA certified. ABTA is the trade association for tour operators and travel agents in the UK and protects monies paid to travel agents. So your luxury breaks, package holidays, ski breaks, excursions, hotels, family or group bookings can safely be booked with LevarTravel.
With the uncertainty around global travel due to the pandemic and restrictions on movement, it is expected that a lot of holidays will be UK Staycations. There are predictions that there will be more visits to the Lake District, Cotswolds, Cornwall and other tourist hot spots around the UK this year. It may take a few months before we get clear guidance on what is required for international travel.
Let LevarTravel search for the best offers for your holiday. At least, you get a personalised service with a face and a name. The team are also happy to address any questions or concerns so that you enjoy a well-deserved break.
If you are thinking of booking a holiday contact Jamie by email: email@example.com
Sustainability Focused Partnership between JPA Workspaces and Rothamsted Enterprises on the Newly Refurbished Russell Building
The Russell Building at Rothamsted Enterprises, in Harpenden, has been newly refurbished to provide much-needed business office and hotdesking space for high-growth agri-tech SMEs across agriculture, innovation and technology.
The historic red-brick building, which had lain empty since 2014, has been transformed with the support of the Lawes Agricultural Trust and Rothamsted Enterprises, and the help of a £1.7m Local Growth Fund investment from Hertfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) and Herts Innovation Quarter (Herts IQ), focused on boosting agri-tech growth in the county.
The increase in workspace capacity will enable a greater number of companies to take advantage of the tax breaks, free business support and collaboration opportunities offered by Herts IQ with innovation partners Lawes Agricultural Trust and Rothamsted Enterprises.
The investment has breathed new life into the building, bringing forward modern, multi-use spaces, including 22 offices of various sizes, from 200ft2 to over 1,200ft2, a hot-desk hub for flexible working, and an open plan innovation space where entrepreneurs can meet and collaborate before prototyping their ideas and testing on-site.
JPA Workspaces, based a few miles down the road in nearby St Albans, has assisted with the design and furnishing of the impressive expansive hot-desking hub and reception areas. Additionally, they have worked closely with Rothamsted Enterprises to furnish a show office so that prospective tenants can get a real flavour for the spaces, with contemporary, height-adjustable desks, wireless charging and plenty of desktop power, to help attract and inspire prospective tenants.
Sustainability is central to the project and is reflected right through to the furnishings. Timber-based products supplied by JPA are from sustainable sources, recyclable at end of life, and accompanied by lengthy warranties. JPA’s furniture installation was zero waste and carbon neutral, contributing to Hertfordshire’s drive for sustainable growth.
With a heavy emphasis on design for wellbeing across the entire refurbishment, the scheme provides a working illustration of versatile, future-proofed office and collaboration spaces designed to enhance the user experience, mental health and engagement.
Furniture packages are also available to rent, lease or purchase outright from JPA, tailored to budget, design and individual tenant requirements. JPA maintain and support all furniture items installed inclusively within their service package so that all areas can be kept operational 24/7 or as required, ensuring the best long-term return on investment and value over the total cost of life.
“We are delighted to have been able to showcase the benefits of working with local partners for this project which has delivered measurable local impact and value for all parties,” says Graham Pulsford, the Managing Director of JPA, “and we look forward to building our working relationship with the team at Rothamsted Enterprises, it has been a pleasure”.
“We’re delighted that this iconic building is now back in use as a hub for agri-tech businesses and it has been great to work with local business, JPA, who have delivered a carbon-neutral, zero-waste furniture installation for us,” said Nicole Sadd, CEO, Rothamsted Enterprises. “We very much look forward to welcoming lots of innovative businesses to the Rothamsted ecosystem.”
Cherie Norris, Herts IQ Enterprise Zone Manager at Hertfordshire LEP said: “As the original birthplace of agricultural science in the UK, we’re pleased that the Russell Building will once again be home to the next generation of agri-tech and food-tech innovators. Our investment will support more businesses to join Herts IQ and take advantage of the world-class expertise available at Rothamsted Research, and we’re delighted to support their future success in Hertfordshire.”
Businesses in agri-tech, agri-food, climate change, farming, agricultural science and research looking for new office premises in Hertfordshire should contact Claire Wolstencroft on 01582 938500 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Businesses looking to partner with a sustainable furniture/workspace supplier should contact JPA Workspaces on or 01727 840800 email email@example.com.
From Press Release 03.02.2021