Archive for the ‘Business Travel’ Category

October 16th, 2011  Posted at   Business Travel

Cruise Planners-American Express Travel began back in 1994 when Michelle Fee, Marvin Davis,and Lynn Korn started their partnership. Five short years later they began selling franchise opportunities. They are currently headquartered in Coral Springs, Florida and their product is the sales of cruise vacations. As of 2009, they had over 800 US based franchises and they are currently seeking expansion in the United States.

Cruise Planners charges a franchise fee of $9,995 and an ongoing royalty fee of 3% of the gross sales. They do require that new franchisees have a minimum net worth of $15,000-25,000 and a cash liquidity requirement of at least $9,000. A new owner may finance the franchise fee, but in-house financing is not offered. A Cruise Planners/American Express franchise can be run from home and can be operated on a full or part-time bases.

The parent company offers a variety of tools to help the new franchisee to market their business. These tools include professional postcards, flyers, brochures, banners, and print ads which can be personalized for each franchisee. The also offer a web-based marketing program that offers services from web site design to email marketing and weekly e-newsletters. Cruise Planners/American Express offers a 6-day orientation training as well as continual training and education through a program they call “Cruise Planners University” which is offered at the corporate headquarters in Florida.

Although the marketing tools and training programs look to be excellent, a new franchisee should keep in mind that they will need to take full responsibility for their marketing efforts and all expenses incurred by it. Success with a Cruise Planners franchise depends on your ability to market yourself and close sales. Before entering into this type of endeavor, the new franchisee may want to invest some time and effort into learning effective sales and marketing techniques, if they are not already proficient in this. (more…)

October 15th, 2011  Posted at   Business Travel

Cruise Planners, a part of the American Express company has a travel franchise business opportunity for the entrepreneur wanting to work from home. Here is a simple review of this unique franchise business.

Cruise Planners is part of the American Express company and is a travel franchise opportunity for anyone who would be interested in creating a work from home business. With many more ships being set to sea over the next few years this could be a hot business opportunity for many individuals.

The opportunity comes with the following to help individuals to succeed in their business:

• Highest commission levels in the industry

• Turn-key, award winning marketing and advertising programs

• Lead generation and website programs

• Enormous buying power and group inventory

• CPU – our continuous training program

• Proprietary accounting and customer management software

• Dedicated support staff

The marketing program will be a must as this is truly a work from home business. Of course this opportunity will have only a limited amount of training when it comes to marketing online. Learning how to effectively drive traffic to this business will be a must and purchasing the needed Internet marketing training should be considered. Driving qualified FREE traffic online does have a learning curve, but this learning curve can be made simple and extremely effective.

Cruise Planners is a solid franchise business opportunity for the entrepreneur looking for a work from home business. There are many incentives for individuals to choose the travel packages offered because they are allowed to use an accumulative point system, book a pre- or post cruise hotel stay, transfers and sightseeing tours to enhance your clients’ vacation and hosted group travel packages. It is best however to complete all due diligence into this opportunity and look into Internet marketing trainings available to assist you in building your travel business online. (more…)

September 15th, 2011  Posted at   Business Travel

The question has been posed time and time again and the answer is relatively simple. The reality is that the ability to accept all major forms of payment is most preferred. Some businesses will accept a personal check and in-turn, accept more unnecessary risk than is advised to do so.

So there are a couple options for both processing credit cards as well as accepting checks that can not only make your customer base feel more comfortable doing business with you, but cause a substantial increase in the amount of sales for that given month. For some time, MasterCard and Visa were steady with almost the same risk profiles associated with their credit cards which ended up to be towards the lowest rates available in order to take credit cards. Then came the Discover card. This card from within the fee structure was always a little higher on the rate profile and carried with it many more feature benefits than either MasterCard or Visa. The card issuer, in this case Discover, could then pass part of these rates to the consumer in the form of benefits, e.g., frequent flyer miles, points toward products or services etc.

All cards are not created equal. The rates usually fluctuate between 2%-4% of the total transaction. Many in the affluent market segment usually use AmEx for their purchases in order to take advantage of the points offered by American Express usually on their travel expenses and reimbursement packages. On the flip side to this coin, the merchants have to eat the cost of the transaction while the consumers are protected. This is for many merchants a difficult choice. Credit cards processing in the United States currently runs over 75 million transactions per day on average, so there is a wide spectrum of products that card issuers can offer in order to service the consumer accordingly. The ability to take credit cards is a choice by most merchants while for instance in Chinatown Flushing, Queens, New York, the entire city runs on cash only because Chinese merchants do not wish to pay taxes and also do not wish to create a record of the transaction.

American Express offers your business the ability to accepts credit cards from an affluent market. This market has by far the largest purchasing power in the world. The largest recorded transaction was for a Yacht for over $24 million on a Black American Express card. American Express is very vigilant when it comes to card protection services. They have careful fraud monitoring programs in place that make sure that if there are any transactions that are out of the ordinary or just plain, not supposed to be there then the merchant services account will “red flag” the transaction and prompt the machine to need approval either by telephone conversation that the person who is holding the card, is in fact the person that is the owner of the same card also. Processing credit card transactions is vital depending on your market segment. (more…)