At Home in HawaiiMarch 1, 2006 By: Camie Foster Home-Based Travel Agent
Home-based travel agents can find plenty of ways to sell the islands
Hawaii is such a versatile, satisfying destination that you'll find your clients returning to you—and the islands—time after time. The islands boast a wealth of guided soft adventures, including hikes, bicycle tours, kayaking excursions and snorkeling cruises. Such activities let families feel as though they're delving into Hawaii's natural and cultural history, and when an outfitter handles the details, parents and kids can focus on having fun.
You may also want to coax clients to set aside a morning or an afternoon for a horseback ride. Trail rides often provide a singular view of Hawaii's heritage and natural beauty. Resources
Hawaii has a strong paniolo (cowboy) tradition, and many rides traverse private land, giving riders a chance to see parts of the islands only accessible with permission. Outfitters also are accustomed to working with novice riders.
Although you'll want to encourage your clients to plan ahead for key activities, be sure you craft an itinerary that lets them explore at their own pace. Suggest they book a rental car so they can sightsee at their leisure. Each island has a necklace of public beach parks, inland parks and networks of trails.
Families will find a number of attractions, from zoos to museums. Another activity that may tickle the fancy of parents with pre-teens is a self-guided walking tour. Hotel concierges are a great resource for specific suggestions nearby.
A number of lodging options help families stretch their budgets. Most hotels let two adults and two kids share a room without paying a surcharge, and seasonal promotions can give families a break on booking a second room. Kids-eat-free promotions are a perennial favorite.
Try suggesting a condo stay, too. A one- or two-bedroom unit generally is fitted with a full kitchen, which means families can whip up breakfast or the occasional dinner, if they like, as well as stocking a picnic basket for days they explore.