Nesbitt begins Ship2Shore time in Blyth - March 8, 2018
BY DENNY SCOTT
Blyth resident Jeff Nesbitt is turning a long-time passion into a new part-time vocation, but he hopes that, given time and effort, it could grow into even more.
Nesbitt, who has a full-time job and runs a part-time demolition business, recently finished his Travel Insurance Council of Ontario (TICO) certification and has partnered with Ship2Shore Holidays to become trained as a travel agent.
Nesbitt works with Ship2Shore Holidays, sometimes out of its Mildmay office, which is set to move to Wingham shortly, as well as out of his Blyth home.
He offers all kinds of vacation planning options, but says that what drew him to the business is his specialty: fully-planned, short-term trips.
“It’s something I enjoy doing,” he said. “I’ve been booking trips for friends and family for awhile so I decided to pursue it.”
Nesbitt said he loves travelling and doing research for trips, so it was a natural move for him to get his certification and start working towards being a travel agent.
“I love finding the best places to see and to eat,” he said. “The people I’ve done it for before think I’m good at it. I have had friends say I should branch out into this and, in their minds, I know where to find the deals and where to go.”
He said that kind of planning, providing a full itinerary with events, transportation and accommodation, seems to be an under-serviced area.
“It’s good for anyone really, but it works well with groups of couples looking for a long weekend trip; people looking to go to a sporting event like a Toronto Blue Jays game in Boston or other small groups that want to travel together.”
He said he has planned events like a couples’ retreat to Nashville and a girls weekend in Miami, as well as family vacations to Washington state.
“The more I looked, the more I noticed no one was doing these shorter trips as a specialty,” he said. “No one sits down to offer a full itinerary for two- or three-day trips.”
Nesbitt said those kinds of trips are needed these days because it can be difficult for people to find the time and resources to be away from home for a week or two. He also said that Blyth and the surrounding area is in a unique position that makes the trips more attractive.
“We’re fortunate that we live in an area that has a lot of destinations close-by for a weekend,” he said.
While his eventual plan is to be his own agent with an affiliation with Ship2Shore, currently he is working through the company to get started.
“This helps with the training,” he said. “I wanted to jump into my own thing and hit the ground running, but this lets me learn and lets them have a bit of an expanded service. It’s a win-win.”
Nesbitt was certified in December and has been training ever since then and getting ready to offer his services.
“I wanted to make sure the customers would be happy,” he said. “I wanted to take that time to get ready.”
Ship2Shore has three specialties, thanks to Nesbitt. He offers short-term trips, like weekends away, while his fellow agents offer expertise in all-inclusive vacations and cruises. While each agent has their own strength, Nesbitt said they all offer full-service programs for every kind of vacation.
“It’s nice to have those different fields of expertise to be able to bounce ideas off of and go to with questions,” he said.
While the job is part-time now, Nesbitt said he wouldn’t mind if it became more of a full-time job.
“The worst-case scenario I see here is it being a worthwhile part-time job that I enjoy,” he said. “I certainly wouldn’t mind getting my own space and having it be a career eventually.”
Currently, the best place to reach him is at home. For more information, contact him at 519-523-4448.