There are sports coaches. Life coaches. And career coaches.
But a travel coach?
Formerly a travel writer, Dylan Essertier now works with people seeking travel experiences that go beyond the ordinary vacation.
“I searched for a travel advisor who would speak to ‘a woman like me’—someone who didn’t just want to escape through travels but use that time away to help me move toward my long-term goals,” she says.
She couldn’t find that kind of coach, so she became one herself.
“It wasn’t until the past five years that travel coaching has really taken off,” says Michael Bennet, co-founder of the Transformational Travel Council. He attributes the demand to the growth of the personal development industry and the increasing popularity of experiential adventures. Travelers are becoming more interested in the why and how of travel than the what and where.
“Many of my clients are less interested in sitting on a beach and forgetting their life back home,” adds Essertier. “They want to reflect, learn, reset and figure out what really matters to them.”
The transformational power of travel has been documented since Homer wrote the Odyssey. Modern travelers interested in the inner journey can relate to books like Travels with Charley by John Steinbeck and more recently, Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert. Here are a few tips from Essertier for planning a meaningful trip:
• Instead of “Where do I want to go?” start by asking yourself, “What do I want to feel?”
• Be specific about how you want to feel. If you want to feel unburdened, for example, this may encourage you to pack light, turn off your phone, and not schedule something every minute.
• Journal daily. Before going to sleep, write down the day’s high points, low points or any experiences that feel new or interesting to you.
It’s also wise to eliminate any unnecessary medical worries. Medical Air Services Association (MASA) covers best-in-class emergency air and ground transport 24/7 from home or anywhere in the world, plus transportation of vehicles, children, grandchildren, and even pets at no additional cost. With MASA, there are no premiums, deductibles or other hassles. Pay once and you’re covered. Ask an AMBA agent about an emergency transport policy endorsed by your association. Learn more online or call 866-979-0497.
When you’re away from home, peace of mind is primary. As Essertier says, “Putting yourself in the right mindset is the key to planning travel that transforms you.”