Saturday, October 16, 2010
Have class; will travel
What’s the word on travel this season? How about “free?”
It is still possible to see the world for little money, and for those with ambition, even to get paid for it. Gina Henry knows - she works six months then travels the world for six months. That schedule is possible for anyone, as she explains in her popular Club Ed course “Travel for Free & Even Make Money Doing It!” (Wed, Oct 20, 2010, 6:30 - 9 :30 p.m.)
Growing up in a small Kansas town, Gina Henry yearned to follow that yellow brick road beyond the border. While earning her masters degree in international management, she learned ways to travel free. She began sharing her tips, and soon wrote her book Free Vacations & Make Money Traveling.
I caught up with her in between cruises to find out what was happening in today’s travel climate. According to Henry, a lot.
“Travel is an $8 trillion economy, and actually is one of the industries not hurt by the challenged economy,” she said. “After all, if you go on vacation every year, you are still going to go on vacation. You are just looking for good value.”
So instead of taking a three-week cruise, you might plan a shorter trip. Or instead of checking into a luxury resort, you stay at a bed & breakfast or lodge.
In a way, the current economic situation may even be a good incentive to make more people consider travel as a career.
“With my tips, people are looking at travel as secondary income,” Henry said. “They can actually grow income on travel. The idea of having this as a hobby, business, second, or even primary income makes a lot of sense to them.”
One major change in travel has been the rise of the Internet. All your travel planning and booking can be done online, with incredible deals. Henry will show how to do that, as well.
“People are just looking for more information,” she said. “I love getting a roomful of people interested in learning.”
The most frequently asked question from her students is about the status of frequent flyer miles. There is a misconception that those are too hard to book. Not true, says Henry.
“Frequent flyer miles are still a very viable option,” she said. “And you can gather them not just from credit cards, but in many other ways, such as online shopping.”
Another option for wannabe travelers is teaching.
“Teaching English at resorts is huge,” Henry said. “People don’t realize how English is the world’s business language. A young person can go overseas and study and teach around the world, with no certification. All you need to do is speak English better than the person you are trying to help.”
The curious and the serious will learn dozens more ideas in her three-hour class. Henry is happy to answer questions, and provide contact information so people can start traveling for free right away. Every year she teaches 100 seminars in cities across the country.
"It's all possible, it's all practical," said Henry, who leaves next week for India, Bhutan, and Thailand. "Anyone can do it. I like working six months a year and having six months off.”
Gina Henry will teach the class “Travel for Free & Even Make Money Doing It!” on Wednesday evening, Oct 20, at Club Ed. Her web site is www.ginahenrytravel.com. For information or to sign up, click www.clubed.net, or call 830-895-4386.