Vacation Visions specializes in family vacations, luxury bucket list and milestone trips, women’s tours, cruises, all-inclusive resorts and romance getaways (honeymoons, destination weddings and anniversaries). We are a full-service, leisure travel agency.
Staci Blunt, CTC, CTP – Owner
Qualifications & Experience
Certified Travel Counselor (CTC) with the Institute of Certified Travel Agents (ICTA).
The CTC designation is the pinnacle of travel industry professionalism. The CTC curriculum covers business development, contemporary issues, and professional development. CTCs must possess at least five years of full-time travel industry experience and are required to earn ten continuing education credits each year to maintain their designation.
Certified Tour Professional (CTP) with the National Tour Association (NTA).
The CTP designation indicates a professional commitment to continued education, growth, and excellence in the packaged tour industry. Requirements include professional study, continuing education program requirments, a research paper and five years of full-time travel industry experience.
Family Travel Specialist & Arizona Board Member with the American Society of Travel Agents (ASTA).
The family travel market is growing and diversifying. This certification course addresses the unique needs of various types of families, planning the family vacation: do’s & don’ts, and identifying family-oriented operators and destinations.
Bachelors Degree in Recreation/TourismManagement from Arizona State University.
20 years of Industry Experience
Manager & Director-level positions previously held with America West Airlines, Hostelling International/AYH, Tempe Convention & Visitors Bureau, All Aboard America Tours! & the Arizona Office of Tourism.
Multi-destination travel experience
- USA (49 states)
- New Zealand
- South Pacific – French Polynesia (Tahiti) & the Marquesas
- South Africa
- Central America – Costa Rica, Guatemala, Belize
- South America – Peru
Destination Specialist Certifications
- New Zealand
- Costa Rica
- Cayman Islands
- Latin America
- North America
- Hawaii (state) and Oahu
- Las Vegas
- Disney – College of Disney Knowledge Graduate
- Club Med All-Inclusive Resorts
- Sandals/Beaches All-Inclusive Resorts
- Various accomodations programs – Brisas, ResortQuest, ASTON, Outrigger
Mother of two
Why Use A Travel Agent?
Because, without a Travel Agent, You Are on Your Own!
Travel is one of the most researched items on the Internet. Even the most casual user is amazed at the availability and diversity of information. The Internet is an incredibly powerful tool. It may, in fact, provide so much information that one can easily become confused and get an attack of information overload. Whatever the circumstances, once you’ve done your Internet search nothing can replace the value, objectivity and service that an experienced travel professional provides in helping you plan a memorable, safe and rewarding trip.
More About the Benefits of Using a Travel Agent (as quoted from ASTA)
An Open Letter to Travel Editors from Joseph A. Watters,
President, Crystal Cruises
|Dear Travel Editor,
“Why should I use a travel agent?” As a veteran travel executive, that’s a question I’m often asked. Today, with the overwhelming number of sources for travel information (the Internet, cable television, newspapers, magazines, guidebooks, etc.), it’s no wonder the consumer is confused. Yet that’s precisely why the services of a professional travel consultant are more valuable than ever.In January, the television news magazine, 20/20 , reported the results of a test in which travel agents beat consumers at uncovering the best airfares. However, it is much more than the “lowest fare” that provides the compelling argument for a good travel agent. The best thing an agent can do is to match up a traveler with the vacation that’s right for them. The professional travel consultant builds relationships with their clients to learn their interests and lifestyles, as well as their dispositions. Below is a list of some of the important services, which are either provided free or for a nominal charge, by travel agents:1. Distilling the product information: Through an on-going and time-consuming process of familiarization, continuing education and customer feedback, the agent becomes a travel expert.
2. Investigating and supplying competitive information: No single supplier is going to advise a consumer that a better route or a better fare is available on a competing carrier.
3. Staying abreast of the most current and timely promotions: Via daily faxes, agent-only e-mail transmissions, and their relationships with their district sales managers, agents are obtaining the most current promotional information.
4. Analyzing the current promotions: The cheapest is not always the best.
5. Clarifying the fine print, such as cancellation penalties and restrictions: Again, the benefits of a professional’s experience can save a traveler money . . . and headaches.
6. Making recommendations for travel-related options: Travel agents share the experience and knowledge they accumulate about a variety of travel topics – from where to eat, where to shop and what to pack.
7. Simplifying the research and subsequent transaction: Like a personal shopper, agents can provide one-stop shopping for travelers who require air arrangements, rental cars, cruise accommodations and hotel stays – with suggestions that are in the best interest of the client, not the supplier.
8. Enhancing the trip with value-added benefits and amenities: Agents can add to the client’s experience by sending a bottle of wine, providing a special land package, a specific escort or other customer amenities.
9. Using their clout to obtain the best possible in seemingly impossible situations: Whether it’s airline seats, hotel rooms or cruise space, the travel agent has more buying power than the consumer.10. Getting problems resolved: The agent serves as the consumer’s advocate in the event something inadvertently goes wrong.The use of outside service providers for many transactions, such as tax preparation, isn’t questioned. Similarly, if one is going to spend hundreds or thousands of dollars, as well as a good chunk of valuable leisure time, it makes great sense to use a professional.I hope you’ll consider sharing this information in future consumer interest columns.Sincerely,
JOSEPH A. WATTERS
Vacation Visions has been featured on Good Morning Arizona (News Channel 3), News Channel 12, and in the Arizona Republic.