A Decade of Foerster Travel: Gratitude and Resilience
Lindsay Foerster

FOERSTER TRAVEL IS…

and as usual, I am late to my own party. February 12, 2021 marked 10 years since I decided to open my own company and travel the world.  I have visited over 70 countries and experienced some of the most amazing adventures that some never even dream possible. I would own a vacation home in some destinations, and to some, I would likely never return. People do often ask me which countries are my favorite to visit, and I give them a standard reply that goes something like this: (it helps if you read my reply in a very monotone voice to get the full effect)

 “Every destination has touched my heart in a different way, so I can’t say that I have a favorite,” and for the most part, that is true.

But I think it is time to start expounding on that colorless response and share my experiences with the world.  The catch?  I have never written a personal travel blog.  I have thought about it before.  Honestly though, I have always been too busy traveling and immersing myself in the moment to actually write about my adventures, and by the time I get home where I could reflect and share my story, my mind is already preparing for my next getaway.

Travel is rarely a vacation for me, as I try to use every opportunity to cultivate new partnerships with hoteliers and key industry personnel, but as I share some of my most memorable experiences, my hope is that the pages of my story will inspire you to fill the pages in yours; one destination, one connection, and one ridiculously magical jaunt at a time.

 

HOW TO GET THROUGH THE TERRIBLE, NO GOOD, VERY BAD TIMES

I think I speak for everyone when I say that 2020 was a complete and utter train wreck of a year.  A global pandemic grounded us from travel and visiting family, kept kids from going to school, unemployed millions, and left us all wondering what the hell was going on in the world as some of our closest friends and family members were passing away from a virus that even the world’s best epidemiologists knew very little about.

From a travel industry perspective, the pandemic devastated tourism around the globe.  I couldn’t help but feel so helpless in a time when many of my colleagues were being furloughed and dozens of travel agencies shuttered.  How did we fight through?  Like so many times before, those businesses left standing had to shift from Resistance to Resilience.

For the past several months, I have had to work on getting out of my head and digging deep within myself to keep my business alive.  It has done me absolutely no good to think of every future worst case scenario, so I have had to learn to live in the present.  What do you do when your present feels less than optimistic or just downright sucks?  Well, a sucky present doesn’t change the mission; at least it hasn’t changed mine.  With each border closure, travel ban, and hotel closure – and every travel protocol since – I have had to find ways to pick myself up and focus on what I can control.  We know that absolutely nothing is certain, and if we are being honest with ourselves, nothing really ever was.  Thinking things never change gives us this empowering illusion of safety, and then boom, our safety net is gone as soon as we accept the reality. We use the term “fluid” so often these days (which by the way, I despise that word), but the real reality is, everything has always been ever-changing (and I am not one for change).

 

EMBRACING CHANGE AND CHOOSING GRATITUDE

So what happens when we start to embrace change?  Grief upon grief has been a normative behavior for many of us in today’s world, but coping with adaptation can promote a sense of accomplishment and gratitude as well.

People who wonder whether the glass is half full or half empty miss the point.  The glass is refillable. – Unknown

Life is all about perspective, is it not?  With all the blows I have been dealt, I started trying to find small wins in my day.  An employee booked a trip?  AWESOME!  My three year old son said a new word? COOL!  I actually cooked dinner? FANTASTIC!  Looking at life through the gratitude lens allows us to become resilient, and RESILIENCE IS THE KEY!

In a world and life full of so many unknowns, how do we continue to press on?  First, we must accept that the future is full of so many unknowns. Then, we must allow ourselves to feel the anger and grief of our current situation(s) and then experience that anger and grief without resistance.  Doing this over and over every single day allows us to surrender, and surrender allows us to hold on to hope without specific attachment.  From there we can make better decisions, because we make them from what is, and not from what we wish it was or fear it may be in the future.

Stephen Covey, author of the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, says “[We’re] not a product of our circumstances.  [We’re] a product of our decisions.”  So, today, right now, I challenge you to make the decision to carry on or start over, if you must.

-Lindsay

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SYDNEY S.

Always have had a positive experience and we always work with Ashly! She is the absolute best. She takes away the challenge of planning the perfect vacation by taking all the things we want and creating the perfect vacation itinerary and booking it for us. We never have to worry about anything. She always checks in to see how things are going and follows up with us afterwards. She has great experience and loves Disney as much as we do!! We would never book with anyone else. Highly recommend for any and all vacation or travel plans.

ASHLEIGH D.

My husband and I booked our vacation through Foerster with Tobie Mock and got an AMAZING deal for a week long vacation to Mexico. I think what made our booking experience with Foerster so great, was our agent Tobie. She was absolutely amazing! She was very responsive and helped us plan our dream vacation for a great deal! It was a very easy process and she handled everything for us. It was nice not having to stress about planning! I highly recommend this company and especially Tobie Mock as an agent!

RACHEL D.

Ashly was AMAZING! From start to finish she really listened to what we were trying to ultimately accomplish for our trip. Not only were we planning our honeymoon, but this was the first time we’ve been able to truly travel since we got together. She understood how big this was for us and went the extra mile to make sure it was perfect! I can’t thank her enough for her patience, professionalism and perfection! You rock, Ashly!!

JENNY P.

I have 100% put ALL my trust in Foerster Travel because they are AMAZING!!! Lindsay planned my entire wedding in Mexico and it was PERFECT. She helped me pick out the perfect resort, was calm and patient with me, and worked with all of my guest. As a bride, I had zero stress and it was all due to Lindsay and her company! She literally works miracles! I also had two other best friends get married and went through her company. She planned my trip to Costa Rica and I just got back from a two-week trip from Europe!!!! I do not know what I would do without Lindsay and Foerster Travel!!!! I 100% recommend this company!

KAMI P.

Meggie is quick and efficient! She typically responds same day and does all the work to find exactly what you are looking for, vacation and budget wise. Our vacations have been stress free from the second we think about taking one until we arrive home all because she takes care of every detail! We will never go on a vacation without her help. Thanks Meg!

HALEY V.

Briana and Foerster Travel are amazing!! They are our go to anytime we have a specific destination in mind or just want a vacation without knowing where. She is so knowledgeable and helpful with the entire process. She works quickly and is very flexible if things change. Bri does an outstanding job and makes the process so easy on me! I won’t use anyone else!

BRANDI C.

My husband and I have had the pleasure of using Meggie Hunter as a travel agent several times. She is diligent, thorough and professional. Her knowledge and expertise of the travel industry has been invaluable to us. She has always been on top of everything from the moment we presented her with our travel ideas. Meggie is lots of fun, energetic and easy to work with. We highly recommend Meggie and Foerster for all of your travel needs!

TARA L.

Tobie made planning our trip so easy! She recommended great resorts and got everything booked for us, when COVID happened we were super stressed about what would happen but she sat on hold for hours (sorry Tobie!!! but so thankful for you!) to get everything rescheduled for us! She Is the sweetest and made the whole process so fun and easy, we are so excited for our upcoming trip. I definitely won’t book with anyone else for any future travel!

JOSH G.

Sarah booked our anniversary trip to Jamaica and It was the easiest trip I’ve ever planned. She made sure we got got to experience everything on our list and got us the best prices available. I would highly recommend Sarah and the Forester team!

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