Are you making time for travel?

Pursuing your Dreams and Making Time to Travel

Deciding on what career path you may take in life may be one of the toughest decision’s you have to make as a young adult.  There are so many factors to consider. Are you able to find a job in your field? Will you make a decent earning? How long will it take to complete your education? and most of all, how much money will it cost to complete?

Growing up in a small community on the ocean front, I always felt a pull to the beautiful scenic view from my parent’s home. To wake up with the calmness of the ocean and peacefulness of my rural life made my decision for my career path an easy one.  I knew I wanted to share this type of beauty with others.


When I was very young and going to the St. John’s Airport to see my Aunt and Uncle off as they departed for their annual trip to the mainland to visit family, I remember that I was so caught up in the excitement that someone was going on vacation and would be in a new city in such a short time. I knew then that I had the travel bug in my blood.

Once out of high school, I enrolled in Travel & Tourism studies and graduated with Honours in 1988.  It was a challenge to gain employment here locally, every employer was looking for an experienced agent and I just couldn’t get my foot in their door. How was I to get experience if no one would give me a chance to prove I could do the job? I knew I could, I just had to find a way to showcase what my passion for this line of work could showcase to them.  I was not prepared to let this end my dream to travel the world and help other’s do the same.  I will pursue what I want in my life and I have to find a way to do it.  It was just before Christmas of that year that my travel school called to say there were job openings in Toronto.  I was so excited, off went my resume and, in only a few short days, I got the call.  The voice on the other end of the phone told me “You have a job if you want it”. I was ecstatic. It didn’t take me long to get ready. It was thanks to my grandfather for believing in me and my dream and buying that ticket to the “mainland” that I started my journey. I also give gratitude to my Aunt and Uncle who gave me a place to stay in this big city. It was scary for me at the age of 19 to take the transit for my commute to work. I was a fast learner and knew that if I wanted something bad enough then I needed to reach for it. I had nothing to lose but fear itself.

I started my official first job with a travel tour operator in their reservation dept. I got to spend each day talking to travel agents and learning the world of travel destinations. I loved this type of work but knew I wanted more from my career and the next move was to get working in a Travel Agency. I moved to Hamilton and started my job search and landed my next job in no time at all. I was without experience in the front line agency field and I told the employer during the interview, “please give me a chance, what do you have to lose?” I told her that I was a hard worker, can do tasks without being asked and I will do what it takes to ensure that I do the best I can if she would give me a chance. She agreed and I got the job!  I was so empowered by my own self esteem. I always tell myself, that you can do it; go for it!


Don’t be afraid to challenge yourself, look for change, take a risk and ask someone to put their trust in you.  Opportunity is always waiting for those that want to knock on the door of success.

I eventually got to move back home with 4 years experience under my belt and was working again in no time at all. In my interview for the job, I was asked where you see yourself in 5 years.  I replied in your seat (the manager’s job). I got the job!  I knew I wanted to excel in this field and wanted to be the best I could. I love challenges, taking risks and wanted to be a leader too and part of a team.

Travel has always been and will continue to be my passion.Arlene-Pic3

In April of 2014, I decided it was time for a personal change and jumped in to start my own at home travel office, opening on June 1.  I remind myself daily that it is not always about what you do, its if you enjoy doing it?  Personal and business life go hand in hand and sometimes you have to step beyond your comfort zone and be a risk taker. A good balance is what you need to be successful. My “why” for doing this job every day is to make someone else’s life more rewarding through their own personal  experience of traveling to their “dream” destination and to share my travel experiences with them and ensure they have a  perfect work-free vacation.

We all need a break from our daily routine and I know woArlene-Pic4rking for yourself can be a 7 day work week. Take time for yourself, you have earned it, so perhaps sitting on a beach with the warm breeze blowing while you read a favourite book, sailing the seas on a cruise or perhaps a trip  to explore the history of a quaint European town is your next adventure to celebrate you! The World is waiting for you.

Are you making time for Travel?

Arlene Gibbons

Arlene Gibbons is an experienced travel professional with more than 25 years in the business.  She is a Sales Travel Consultant and Manager for her business, The Travel Agent Next Door. Contact Arlene so she can share her knowledge and experience with you so that, together, she and you can come up with exactly the right vacation for you and your family and friends.  Email Arlene at or visit her online at


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