Alongside guided group tours, travel clubs offer globetrotters a chance to see the world alongside fellow explorers. And for Group Coordinators in particular, starting a travel club and joining our Group Travel Program makes it easy to keep the wanderlust flowing year-round, whether or not you have a trip planned. Need some travel club ideas? Here are our tips for how to create a travel group—and make it as inspiring as can be.
Give it a name
When starting a travel club, begin with a name. Giving it a catchy, witty, or otherwise memorable title lends it authority and recognition—especially when recruiting new members. “[A name] lends credibility,” says Group Coordinator Pat, who leads the Time Zone Trekkers travel club. “When I publish an article in the newspaper, I can say ‘Time Zone Trekkers’ Upcoming Trip’ instead of using my name.”
For extra help getting your travel group to take its first steps, read this: Becoming a Group Coordinator: Recruiting tips
Host regular meetings
Still wondering how to start a vacation club? Take Group Coordinator Pat’s advice and help it off the ground by organizing frequent meetings. “Our meetings are very informal,” she said. “We normally spend about 30 minutes [chatting] before we get down to business.”
Group Coordinator Ann didn’t just start a travel club: She leads two with over 150 members each, spanning the entirety of Maine. ”Travel is always the hot topic,” she says. “The group members joined specifically to meet other people who are interested in travel, but there is no pressure for them to enroll on a tour. However, many become good friends and travel buddies, now or in the future.”
Types of get-togethers you can plan
- Snacks and drinks at a member’s house
- A group hike along a nearby trail
- A trip to a museum with exhibits on potential locations
- Parties that match the theme of an upcoming tour: food and wine, adventure, etc.
- Movie nights, with films from or set in the places you’ll visit
- Whatever else inspires you!
See how traveler Lisa put our tips into practice by visiting these Outlander filming locations on tour in Scotland
As your crew grows and you begin planning more group tours, you’ll find yourself with more on your plate than when you were starting a travel club. If you want to make the 24 hours you have in a day stretch even farther, tap another member to be a junior Group Coordinator. They can lead an upcoming trip, help plan future vacations, and brainstorm travel club ideas. That way, you can split responsibilities, gain new perspectives on recruiting, marketing, and planning—and have an extra set of hands to help you after your travel club takes off.
Help a fellow Group Coordinator find some inspiration: 10 amazing things in Ireland to experience with a group
Expand your community
A crucial part of how to start a travel group is learning how to maintain an influx of interested recruits. And there’s no special secret for it—leverage word of mouth to attract travelers who love a good tour. Members may come and go, but that constant rotation brings new faces who might be interested in going on tour each year or every few months.
Ann echoes the idea that travel clubs are a great way to meet like-minded people. “Members will make friends with each other and want to travel together if the opportunity is there,” she explains. “I have made wonderful friends that I never would have known had I not started this meetup.”
Ways to grow your travel club
- Create and promote a social media group
- Hang flyers in local businesses (and ask friends to help)
- Encourage existing members to introduce your travel club to their networks
Learn how other Group Coordinators inspire repeat travelers for group tours