“It’s all about getting to know what the client needs”: An Interview With Travel Assistant, Fern Eddowes
‘Passionate, Professional, Personable.’ That’s our motto here at Rapid. We’re passionate about what we do. We always work in a professional way. And, as you’ll discover when you book your business accommodation or travel with us, we go to great lengths to make sure there’s always a person on the end of the phone, not some automated robot.
So, to help you get to know even more about the people behind Rapid, we’ve put together a special series of interviews that dig a little deeper into what motivates us to help you save time and money and make working away feel that little bit closer to home.
In the hot seat today we have one of our dedicated Travel Assistants, Fern Eddowes, who’s responsible for making sure you have everything you need when it comes to your accommodation and travel. We drop in on the conversation with Fern telling us about her previous role as a flight attendant:
FERN: Vegas flights were always the craziest.
RAPID: That’s not a surprise. I guess there’s a lot of celebration. Or commiseration?
FERN: Yeah. Some people are very happy on the way. But some are less so on the way back! One time I remember a passenger banging another over the head with a shoe. That was a weird flight.
RAPID: Haha. Sounds like Odd Job from James Bond was on board! Wow. I bet you saw some strange things. But I guess it was a great experience for working with Rapid?
FERN: Oh yeah, it’s been really useful. I’ve travelled so much and stayed in so many hotels during my time flying around the world. It really helps with understanding the experiences our clients go through. I feel like I can relate to those little details people often overlook when it comes to business travel and accommodation.
RAPID: That’s interesting. And when it comes to little details, as a travel assistant for Rapid, you really do take care of everything, right?
FERN: We try to. From the moment you choose to bring Rapid on board, we’re at your disposal.
RAPID: So how’s it actually work? Let’s say I decide to book with Rapid and call you up. What happens from there?
FERN: We try to get to know you to begin with. We’ll have a little chat about what your needs are. We figure out what is a must for you – whether it’s a particular hotel, or location or a particular train, or flight. And we obviously figure out where you’re traveling, how many days you need to be away, all the details of your trip.
RAPID: And then you work your magic?
FERN: Haha. Kind of. Once we’ve figured out your needs, we’ll get to work sourcing everything for you and seeking out the best deals. Once we think we’ve got everything set and have identified the most cost-effective options for you, we’ll put a draft itinerary together for you to check off. Once you’re cool with it, we get to work booking everything.
RAPID: And to be clear, you guys book everything. The client doesn’t need to worry about any of that?
FERN: Exactly. We book trains, taxis, accommodation and any flights you might need. We’ll even sort restaurant reservations if you need them.
RAPID: You really are a complete travel assistant!
FERN: We try to be. But of course, it’s all there to access for the client too. We have a great online portal where they can get all the ticket information, boarding passes and stuff like that. We’ve even figured out a way you can collect train tickets from the station machines with your own card, even though we’ve booked it.
RAPID: So the whole trip is documented and covered? There’s no worrying about whether you’ve clicked the right button or booked the right dates of travel and all the weird panics you go through when booking stuff online these days.
FERN: None of that. We do it all. And we’ve got your back during the trip too. We’re on call 24/7 so if you arrive somewhere and there’s a problem or your schedule changes for any reason – we will jump into action.
RAPID: And you cover people aboard too?
FERN: Yes. If you need a taxi booking to get you from one side of Paris to the other, or if you need an extra night in a hotel in New Zealand – call us at any time during your trip and we’ll sort you out.
RAPID: That’s cool. But a weird question: how do you actually know how to sort all this stuff? Booking a taxi in the UK is hard enough – let alone booking one on the other side of the world.
FERN: A lot of research and a lot of building up contacts. Over the years we’ve developed quite a network and wherever we don’t have a contact, we soon do the research and we’ll be on the case very quickly.
RAPID: It’s those connections and knowledge that saves people a lot of time, right? The fact they don’t have to worry about any of it!
FERN: It sure does. I think it’s one of the biggest benefits of having us do your booking for you. It’s not just that it’s cost-effective. It’s the fact our clients save SO much time.
RAPID: Great stuff. As someone who’s travelled the world and has surely been in situations where you’ve forgotten most things at some point, what’s the one thing you always pack these days?
FERN: Always pack your own headphones.
RAPID: Ah, now that is a good tip!
FERN: They’re always the first things in my bag – I can’t travel without them. I use them to listen to music and for my laptop to watch movies. Plus, if I’m on a plane, I hate using the ones they provide. Let’s face it: they’re never usually very good.
RAPID: Ha. You’re right. They never seem to fit properly on my ears.
FERN: Yeah, I make sure to always have my own.
RAPID: What about destinations? Having flown all around the world, where’s the best places you’ve been.
FERN: I like America. New York is a place like no other. So is Vegas. Everyone should visit those places at least once. But, you know, the place that comes to mind most is Philadelphia.
RAPID: That’s different.
FERN: Yeah, I can’t put my finger on why exactly. But I loved walking the streets there. It was such a beautiful place in its own way and I have a lot of good memories there. Definitely recommended.
RAPID: Thanks, Fern. That’s really interesting and great to get your insight into the whole process of booking with Rapid.
FERN: No problem. And if anyone reading this and thinking about using Rapid for their business accommodation or travel, I’d say go for it and just give us a try. I know once people use us the first time, they’ll want to keep on coming back.
If you want to enjoy the experience of having a travel assistant like Fern on hand to help you, why not get in touch with us to see how we could make organising your next business trip that bit easier.
You can call us direct on 0330 090 41 42 or email firstname.lastname@example.org