Published on Friday, July 29, 2011
How it could have been
Guy Snelgar has been working in the industry so long he almost qualifies for a carriage clock, but he's still waiting for that call from Simon Cowell. Here he takes a trip down memory lane...
What was your first job in travel?
I took a three-week temping contract to drive the delivery van for Travicom back in 1989, shortly before it became Galileo UK. That turned into a permanent job working in the warehouse, shipping videcom terminals out to agents, followed by roles in implementations, sales and account management. And I have never quite managed to escape travel since then.
What was the high point of your career?
I know it sounds like a corny answer, but it was actually being successful in getting my current job at GetThere - running the sales team covering the whole of EMEA. For me that meant working in some markets which were brand new to me, which always makes life interesting. Plus I'm lucky enough to work with a really good bunch of people who take their work seriously, but not themselves!
What was the low point?
After I left Galileo in 2002 I decided I needed a big change, so went to work as a director of sales for a major hotel chain. Unfortunately, after a pretty frustrating few months, I realised that the hotel industry wasn't for me and we parted company. I think you're either a hotel person or you're not? I guess I wasn't.
What's your biggest regret?
The moment a couple of years ago when I realised that I wasn't going to make a career from my secret other life as a musician. Don't get me wrong, I love working in travel, but I'd rather be on a tour bus somewhere or drinking poolside in my Bel-Air Mansion. Still? after 20 years of hard gigging, recording, filming and even the odd TV appearance, I finally had to accept that the day job in the travel industry is what pays the mortgage. And let's be honest, it's not cool being a 40-year old wannabe!
What would you be doing now if you weren't in travel?
Probably playing drums in some dodgy wedding band and busking in tube stations during the day!
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The recent insolvency of Low Cost Travel Group, one of the large players in the travel industry had a big impact on the travelers, hotels and all related players from both wholesale & retail arms. There were about 27,000 people on a holiday who had booked through the company comprised of a €200 million wholesale arm and €500 million OTA / retail arm.