Written on 9th March 2016

"10 Minutes with Philip Bell” - Travel Executive at The Appointment Group Los Angeles

With the growing number of businesses operating from all corners of the globe, it was important for our TAG Los Angeles team to become true experts in arranging travel on a global scale.

We recently strengthened our ranks by welcoming Philip Bell to the TAG Global Private Client & Global Corporate brands. Philip comes to us from Flight Center where he formerly held a position as an expert in international airfares and international travel. We asked him about his experience of arranging worldwide travel.

 

1. What is your role at The Appointment Group (TAG)?

I am a Travel Executive for The Appointment Group Los Angeles office. I work for both the Corporate Travel as well as our Private Clients department.

2. What aspect of your role do you enjoy the most?

Playing a role in both our Private Clients team as well as the Corporate team, my role is always exciting as the travel arrangements I make are so diverse. One day I will be arranging the ultimate luxury holiday in Hawaii, for a family of four, the next day I can be managing the travel requirements of VIP’s heading to Paris, London, Milan and New York for their respective fashion weeks.

I also like arranging complex itineraries, multi-stop journeys. I thrive when required to combine four continents in one trip, whilst bearing in mind the comfort and efficiency for the traveller, and budget control for the company.

3. What does your typical work day consist of?

It is difficult to describe a “typical day”, as there seems to be is no such thing at TAG. My days are as diverse as our client base, always a new request or challenge to overcome. I have the chance to work in an industry and company where things evolve continuously which keep thing interesting and fresh.  To be successful it is a pre-requisite to deal well with stress, multi task , never say no and have a flexible approach to your job and responsibilities. We have no ordinary days in the travel industry and TAG in particular, is anything but ordinary!

4. What do you think makes TAG different or unique from other Travel & Event Management companies?

The difference is that we can deliver complete travel services (Touring, Corporate Travel, and Private Clients) and have experts in each field to ensure that our clients get the best experience possible. The fact TAG has been established for over 25 years, means we have strong relations with many amazing hotels and airlines. We almost work in partnership with our suppliers; this allows us to ask for favours when needed but also, provide them with constructive feedback and suggestions.

At TAG we use these strong relationships, plus our personal expertise, to guide our clients in the right direction and live up to the very high standards of service expected of us.

Having worked for other travel companies in the past, the first thing I noticed working for TAG, is the attention to detail. We really care about our clients’ wishes and requirements so it’s important for us to really get to know them. The more we know about them, the better we are able to cater for them in a personalized manner and ensure their travel experience is flawless.

5. What has been your best memory so far whilst working for TAG?

Working directly with clients from the entertainment industry is not only exciting and challenging, but it also comes with its perks. Recently I was lucky enough to receive an invitation to the American Airlines’ sponsored FOX party for the Golden Globes. That was something else! The cherry on the cake being to finally meet the clients you look after in person.

6. What would be your perfect holiday/vacation?

Asia is one of the continents I’ve yet to visit. My Dad lived in Hong Kong and since I was a child hearing his fabulous stories about the city has always made me want to visit. I’d love to explore Japan, Hong Kong, mainland China and South East Asia. The culture there is so different to what we experience in the UK and US so I’d love to take my time to really indulge in their ways of life. I’m getting married next year so maybe it’ll be our honeymoon!?

7. What is your favourite city and hotel in the world?

My favourite hotel is easy, The Beverly Wilshire! I am a huge fan of the film Pretty Woman, therefore whenever I have the chance to set foot in that hotel, I feel like I’m stepping on the film set.

My favourite city is a more difficult choice. I have a few favourites for different reasons. LA because of its year-round sunny and warm weather! I love Paris, it oozes class and romance. I love London for its diversity and seamless mixture of historic and modern buildings. There is nothing like walking along the River Thames towards the city where the new skyscrapers are growing by the day, whilst St. Paul’s Cathedral still stands as a beacon of history at the centre of it all. San Francisco because there is nowhere in the world like it- amazing bridges, amazing restaurants, the streets, the cable cars.

Finally, my hometown Newcastle in North East England. It has everything! Ten miles out of the city and you’re in the beautiful countryside of Northumberland. Five miles in the other direction and you have amazing coastline. The city has incredible architecture including the Tyne Bridge (the inspiration behind the Sydney Harbour Bridge) and I may be biased but I’ve never met friendlier people than Geordies (Newcastle natives!).

8. What is the one thing you cannot live without?

It’s a sign of the times but I’d have to say: social media. My two best friends live in opposite parts of the world and my family still lives in Newcastle, social media allows me to stay in touch. I love to travel but sometimes you can get a little homesick. It’s amazing to be able to pick up your phone and be able to see your loved ones faces from across the world.

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