Travel advising is actually Anne-Marie’s third career. In university, she studied to be a broadcast journalist, and worked as a TV news reporter for nearly six years before she realized her true passion was in documentary filmmaking. While that career only lasted for about 5 years, she enjoyed every minute of it. In 2007, Anne-Marie decided she wanted to be closer to her now husband, Mike, so she moved from Florida (where she grew up) to Savannah, Georgia.
The historic city quickly stole her heart. Anne-Marie and Mike married and settled in Richmond Hill, Georgia which is just outside of Savannah. With the change of address, Anne-Marie needed to find another career and wanted to tap into her love for travel. She quickly learned the industry and today has a portfolio of clients from all over the country.
Anne-Marie’s current obsessions are: bulldog puppies, trying old family recipes, and stargazing
Where did your love for travel start?
My mother is German, so I started traveling at a young age. My mother would take me and my sister to Germany every few years, so I have wonderful memories of staying with my aunt in Munich. My cousin used to take me to school with her and we would go all over the city together. I loved it and very quickly Germany became like a second home for me.
Why do you enjoy working in the industry?
I love interacting and getting to know my clients and then coming up with just the right vacation for them. The research I get to do is so interesting and it’s fun when your job is centered around planning something that will make others happy.
What is your favorite destination/place to visit and why?
Germany will always have a place in my heart, but I also love Africa! So far, I have seen Ghana and South Africa and loved them both. Going on safari is a thrill – I love watching wildlife in their natural habitat and seeing beautiful landscapes. Africa is a great fit for any nature lover.
Tell us about one of your most memorable travel experiences and why it stands out.
There are so many! I’ve had wonderful experiences with family and friends, but I think my most memorable trip was the last time I went to Africa. It was a trip I took alone to South Africa… and it was such an empowering experience to do an exotic trip alone and still have a fantastic time!
Give us a travel tip you don’t think anyone else gives.. or that isn’t given enough…
I have a couple…
First, do your research on travel insurance… it is not one size fits all and having the right type of policy can make a world of difference.
Second… I love packing cubes! But I don’t use them to separate my clothes… I use them to keep outfits together. So, I’ll use one cube for a couple of outfits and I’ll label the cube “Daytime”, then I’ll do another for evening outfits and so on. This system is especially helpful for cruises. This also helps me from overpacking because I have to think out each outfit before I pack it.
Based on the five senses and thinking about travelling what do you…
Like to see: German Christmas markets lit up at night, colorful architecture in Italy, local people, flowers, wildlife and nature.
Like to taste: Traditional meals, coffee, regional wine & beer, and of course specialty desserts!
Like to feel: Excitement, fluffy European duvets, awe… when I see a beautiful cathedral or magnificent landscape
Like to hear: I’ve always loved languages, so I really enjoy listening to people talk in their native tongue.
Like to smell: baked goods in the morning, bratwurst on the grill at Viktualienmarkt in Munich, wild flowers
Lastly, what do you love about Africa Travel Week (WTM Africa) and what are your sentiments on the evolution of trade shows being part virtual?
Africa Travel Week is a great opportunity to build relationships with whom I am entrusting my clients. And, I think adding a virtual component allows some to participate that may not be able to attend in person. So, it widens the scope and allows for more to learn and discover.