KK Chronicles: Nora Parry
Finding a trusted advisor can be tricky and travel is no exception. As the new generation of travel advisors, KKTWW is dedicated to delivering a safe and seamless travel experience while crafting meaningful memories for our clients. How do we do that and how does it set us apart from the rest of the industry? It’s not as simple as offering good service and some added hotel benefits. With visits to over 100 countries (on all 7 continents) and a combined 150 years of valuable industry experience, our talented team of travel professionals offers an unparalleled expertise and a unique ability to exceed expectations through a thoughtful and collaborative approach.
We understand travel planning can be extremely personal, and we’re launching KK Chronicles so you can get to know our advisors and get a glimpse into what they’re seeing in the ever-evolving luxury travel industry. First up, we have Nora Parry, one of our top travel advisors based in San Francisco.
What made you want to join the travel industry?
I grew up in a big, adventurous family that really encouraged exploration from a young age, so joining the travel industry right out of college seemed like a great way to combine my interests and experiences up to that point. I first started working for a New York City-based Public Relations firm that specialized in luxury travel, and while PR was ultimately not for me, it was an excellent introduction into the industry. Subsequently, I took time off to volunteer in Nepal and backpack throughout Asia while figuring out my next career move, knowing that I wanted to remain working in travel. I have always loved planning trips and researching the latest travel developments around the world, so becoming a travel consultant was not only a dream job for me but a logical next step!
Backpacking through Asia sounds like a dream! Which was your favorite country you visited on that trip?
I spent a great deal of time traveling solo and volunteering in Nepal, so it holds a special place in my heart. From the Himalayas in the north to the jungles in the south, the country is so diverse and rich in varied experiences. Not to mention the warm people who welcome visitors with open arms.
What are the biggest benefits of working with a travel advisor? Do you have any tips for travelers searching for the right travel advisor?
One of the greatest benefits of working with a KKTWW travel advisor is that we are able to secure complimentary amenities and VIP treatment due to our extensive relationships with key industry players. Our clients feel confident that their investment will result in an extraordinary experience. When searching for the right travel advisor, it’s important to find someone who listens to your needs and preferences so that they can make recommendations truly tailored to you. Travel is very personal, and each trip should be created with that particular traveler in mind.
How do you make sure the itineraries you plan exceed the specific needs of your client?
I take time to gather a full understanding of my clients’ travel styles and preferences so that I am confident we are able to create itineraries that are fully customized to their personalities and interests. I always ask my clients to tell me about their preferred cadence of travel. When building an itinerary, it’s fundamental to know if they like to be on the move every couple days to really maximize their time or if their travel style tends to be a bit more relaxed. Additionally, many people like to start off with a packed itinerary and end the trip enjoying several days of total leisure. It’s important to get a great sense of their ideal pace as I wouldn’t want any of my clients to ever feel too rushed or without enough activity.
The logistics of traveling are a little challenging right now – how do you help your clients navigate this tricky time?
It is important to stay informed on the constantly changing travel regulations and requirements to ensure that my clients are completely prepared and their trip can be as seamless as possible. There is a lot of misleading and often confusing information out there, so it is our responsibility to identify the facts and effectively communicate them to our clients in an easy and accessible way.
We hear you’re getting married soon! Are you planning to take a honeymoon?
Our May 2020 wedding was postponed to May 2021; therefore, our honeymoon plans were also paused. We just found out that we are able to move forward with our wedding next month and are thrilled to be heading to South Africa and Mozambique, the ideal combination of adventure and relaxation, this fall for our honeymoon. We cannot wait to experience Cape Town along with its surrounding winelands, safari in Kruger National Park, and finish off the trip lounging on the beach.
What travel trends are you seeing for the summer?
With the current travel restrictions still in place due to COVID-19, many of my clients have been opting for vacations closer to home – Utah/Arizona, California, Hawaii, Mexico, and the Caribbean are all very popular destinations at the moment. As more and more people are able to get vaccinated, I am noticing that my clients are eager to venture further – South Africa, Mozambique, and the Maldives are a few countries that my clients are visiting within the next several months as these destinations currently allow US travelers.
Do you have a favorite property that prioritizes sustainability?
As a brand, Six Senses pioneers noteworthy sustainability practices around the world. Yao Noi is a gorgeous island situated between Phuket and Krabi in Thailand, and the Six Senses’ Environmental and Social Sustainability Policy focuses on multiple areas, such as energy efficiency, water and waste management, social commitment, protecting natural surroundings, air quality, and noise control. Guests are welcome to get involved with these movements as the eco-resort offers an array of sustainability-focused activities, such as the opportunity to join the Six Senses team at a local school to help teach conversational English, tour the local area to learn more about the hornbill and mangrove conservation as well as the clean water programs, and visitors can also encourage their children to learn how to compost at the property’s Junior Eco Warrior Program.
Lana’i is a small island off of Maui that is home to only 3,000 locals and two Four Seasons properties. As part of the Four Seasons’ sustainability efforts, both hotels source much of their high-quality produce directly from the local Sensei Farms’ solar-powered greenhouses for a true farm-to-table model. Every meal I had at Four Seasons Lanai was better than the last!
What sets KKTWW apart from the rest of the industry?
The industry is constantly evolving, and KKTWW strives to be on top of the latest travel trends and partnerships to ensure our clients always have the best experiences all over the world.