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REMEMBER: According to a study by the American Automobile Association (AAA) their 2008 survey showed that the average American couple traveling in North America would spend about $250 per day for lodging and meals.
That is the ‘average’ and has nothing to do with the daily cost of accommodations for a family of four plus entertainment, shopping, etc., with the point here being that when a TS rep asks their sales guest “How much do you folks spend on family vacations each year?” the rep is asking the right question but in the wrong manner.
First the rep should be quoting reliable sources such as the AAA, Money Magazine (which also reports on vacation costs), etc., and say something like “According to the American Automobile Association, folks like yourself are averaging nearly $300 per day while on vacation and that only covers a place to sleep and food to eat. Bill, would you and Mary say your daily vacation costs for a pillow and food is above, below or running about the national average?”
And before they answer the rep must toss in (e.g.) “And of course that is just for accommodations and food, and does not include sightseeing expenses, shopping, shows, entertainment.”
Then when Bill and Mary respond the rep needs to pin ’em down to an amount: “So Mary, you and Bill are spending about (e.g.) $175 per day on vacation just to cover your hotel room and food expenses; is that correct?”
Separating the costs of accommodations and food from the rest of the vacationing budget gets the sales guests thinking in those terms and ‘even’ if they are a ‘budget’ traveler staying in really inexpensive accommodations, if they come back with an answer less than (e.g.) $100 per day they are either lying, don’t know or never gave it much thought.
Isolating accommodations and food costs should be the starting point for the ‘money they’re going to spend anyway.’ And when future projections are made on just those expenses alone the sales guests will have a better appreciation of not only their ‘money’ but for what they can do with those funds via a properly designed vacation budget. By demonstrating that to them the savvy TS Pro will laugh all the way to the bank.
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