Virtuoso Certified Travel Advisor coming down under

Deep dive education courses to be offered in Australia/NZ

Credit: The Climate Reality Project/Unsplash

Virtuoso is preparing to introduce the Virtuoso Certified Travel Advisor program, currently offered in North America, to the Australia/New Zealand market. The VCTA is an intensive qualification that travel advisors can apply to attain and is earmarked to be offered twice in 2023, LATTE can exclusively reveal.

Fiona Dalton, General Manager, AU/NZ for Virtuoso told LATTE she has been “very keen” to bring the course into the region after feedback from Virtuoso Member agencies highlighted a demand for such a curriculum.

Dalton says the accreditation carries significant weight, both with the advisors’ clients but also with Virtuoso’s partners. Comprised of a series of different modules, with learning over four-days, and with a great introductory offer, the VCTA enables owner-managers who want to drill down on topics for their advisors to become the “masters of their craft”.

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“VCTA is a course that is particularly valuable for advisors from another world who are fresh to Virtuoso and have had a solid first year in the network and now want to take their accreditation in Virtuoso to a whole new level,” Dalton said.

The course is supported by Helen Nodland, one of Virtuoso’s Director of Professional Development & Training in the United States, with Michele Duncan facilitating regionally. As LATTE exclusively revealed last month, Duncan has been appointed to the newly created role of Regional Professional Development and Training Specialist, ANZ.

“Through the course, we will start to build our own collection of accredited VCTAs,” Dalton added.

Last year’s deep dive provided education on implementing professional service fees.

“It was the course member-owners needed to not only understand how to better implement professional service fees in their business but to find

Fiona Dalton, General Manager, AU/NZ, Virtuoso

the confidence to really make it work. And not just on a client basis but with their advisors.”

“Some of our testimonials suggested that was a significant game changer in the recovery they experienced.”

“You’ve got to remember, at the same time small, luxury travel businesses were evolving in terms of the way they were remunerated for air and the way they were structured, so to professional service fees become incredibly important,” Dalton said.

“It’s not that you know you need to do it, it’s how do I do it, and how do I find the confidence to train my staff to do it? Eight weeks with us, and members can see how that makes a big difference.”

Dalton said the professional service fees course and deep dives will be rerun in region this year, led by Duncan how has the experience and access to the curriculum.

This year’s Virtuoso Forum is being held in Fiji, from 19-21 March 2023 at Sofitel Fiji Resort & Spa.

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