About Melanie And My Travel Experience
1. About Melanie – Professional Travel Experience
OK let’s start with some facts and figures about my professional travel experience.
- Regular business travel to Denmark and also trips to Germany and Sweden
- Extensive travel around the UK for 6 years and away for a minimum of 6 months per year
- Lived for one season in Lake Garda and another in Lake Como with week-long stays of guests from the UK. Lake Garda tours included weekly visits to the Dolomites, Verona, Venice, Lake Tour and Limone. Lake Como tours included weekly visits to Lake Maggiore, Lake Lugano, Lake Tour, Milan and Bellagio.
- Spent a season working as a hotel representative in Lake Garda covering the Veneto region. This involved doing all the health and safety checks for hotels as well as meeting and greeting guests including those from the Orient Express.
- Taken tours all over the world on behalf of various coach holiday companies including;
- German Christmas markets – Cologne, Trier, Rhine, Moselle, Dresden
- Special events tours including Wimbledon, Formula One, Golf Tours, Robbie Williams and other concerts
- Private group tours including a Cambridge Alumni tour
- Multiple trips (over 5) to China including cruising the Yangtse Gorge before and after flooding, Shanghai, Beijing, Chongqing, Xian, 5 day cruise along the Yangtse.
- Multiple trips (over 5) to Australia including Perth, Darwin, Cairns, Sydney, Brisbane, Adelaide, Melbourne and Uluru. Including a wildflowers tour, driving down the East Coast from Cairns to Sydney and multiple Best of Australia tours.
- Multiple trips (over 5) to the Azores including stays on Sao Miguel, Faial and Terceira with multiple visits to Pico Island.
- St Petersburg to Moscow cruise with 135 British guests.
- Tour to the Baltic States including Latvia, Lithuania, Finland, Norway and Estonia
- Multiple tours to Paris including Paris city tours (by me)
- Multiple tours to London including London city tours (by me), theatre breaks, New Year’s trips, Windsor and Windsor Castle
- Multiple tours of the UK with American guests including tours and commentary throughout (by me) and stays in Bath, Caernarfon, York, the Lake District and Edinburgh
- Multiple Highland Railway tours (over 20)
- Tours of Scotland and England including short break trips, two week in depth tours of Scotland
- Multiple tours to Lewis, Harris, Isle of Skye and Shetland
2. About Melanie – Travel Background
In the 1970s I was lucky enough to enjoy long haul holidays and had some great experiences, not least having a birthday cake with candles presented to me on a British Airways flight to America (that was when you could smoke on a plane!).
I was also a member of the British Airways Junior Jet Club, which not only kept kids entertained on flights but also arranged lots of activities and trips in the UK too.
My first job involved working for a Danish company which meant there were lots of trips to the factory in Denmark including driving across to Denmark when I was 17.
Later I moved into travel full time thanks to my first partner who was a coach driver and introduced me to the life, and it’s something I have done ever since.
Travel really is my passion and I now enjoy solo travel. My bucket list is ever expanding!
3. About Melanie – What It’s Like Travelling for Work
Most of my travel has been for work purposes, initially travelling to events and exhibitions all over the UK and Europe and later as a Tour Manager.
It is a different type of travel from leisure travel.
Most of my travelling has been done leading a group of holidaymakers, mainly British, overseas and latterly leading groups of US guests around the UK.
This makes it a different experience too.
I am often busy when away sorting out problems, confirming flights, and getting supplies and in the old days before WiFi was in hotels you would often find me at an internet cafe trying to catch up on emails and messages related to the tour.
The photo above is me at Lake Lugano when I was based in Lake Como. We used to visit weekly and it was always a nice place to spend the day. It’s quite an old photo and was during the time when I was too scared to fly!
When travelling with groups I never stray too far away from the vicinity of the hotel we are staying in, just to make sure I am on hand in case something is needed.
Often I am working with a coach driver which can add another spin on the work experience.
4. About Melanie – Solo Travel Adventures
In the last couple of years, I have discovered the joy of solo travel and it has been a revelation. I have enjoyed solo stays in Portugal, Spain, Istanbul and Baku and I have lots more solo trips planned.
Whilst there are moments of being scared and uncertain I love the sense of achievement and I love the fact I can do what I want when I want without having to compromise (something I am not very good at anyway!)
5. About Melanie – My Fur Babies!
The hardest thing about travelling is leaving my family, although that is easier now than it used to be as my nephew has gotten older. However, leaving my dogs just gets tougher.
My dogs have been my best friends and kept me company through everything life has thrown at me over the last 12 years or so. They sleep next to me at night and they snuggle next to me on the sofa.
As I write this, during the Covid-19 period of life, they have been my constant companions now for 9 months. I have never been at home so much and they have kept me calm and sane through this craziness, helped me to focus while I work and helped me to appreciate life when at times that has been a bit harder to do.
I think the reason I love dachshunds, in particular, Lotty and Christy are my 3rd and 4th, is their characters. They are strong willed, independent and not very biddable – much like me!
9. About Melanie – Where You Can Find Me
Here’s where you can find me online;
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