Why is Staycation important and How to Plan a Perfect One?

doesn’t want to relax every now and then?

Currently, life has become so busy and fast, and we all need an escape from our daily routines. But the thing is that planning a trip somewhere can be really time- and money consuming. The question is: how to escape your daily routine if you have no time for planning even the shortest trip? A great alternative to the classic vacation can be a recent trend: staycation.

As the word explains itself, a staycation is a vacation-like experience without moving away too far from home. But the goal has left the same: break the vicious circle of the nine-to-five regime and take a break from your everyday life.

Why a staycation?

That’s a practical question.

Firstly, travelling to locations that are distant becomes increasingly more expensive. Airplane tickets, transportation and accommodation expenses all add up to thousands of dollars. While on a staycation, somehow, you can easily save on the most expensive part – tickets and transportation, which makes it affordable.

It’s also much convenient than taking a vacation. Unfortunately, planning a vacation is often easier said than done. The worst parts of it – logistics, transportation, and planning. Just imagine, you get almost all the benefits of a vacation without losing the precious time on planning the routes, packing your luggage and killing time at the airport or on the plane.

Besides, a staycation is a great chance to know the city you live in all over again! I’m pretty sure there are parts of the city you’ve never visited before or restaurants you’ve always found great but too expensive or a museum that you can never find the right time to visit. During a staycation, you get the perfect opportunity to fill in those blanks.

Bonus point for pet lovers! You don’t need to leave your cutie pie in the hands of your friends or family! No more worries and begging for sending pictures of your cat or dog or lizard every two hours – your four-legged loved one can join you in your staycation.

If you are convinced that a staycation is a great alternative to a vacation, let’s go to the main question:

How to plan a perfect staycation?

Turn everything off

Let’s start with the basics: turn off your phone. Okay, maybe not completely, as you’ll definitely need it for taking pictures, but make sure you mute the ringers and the answering machine, and do an “out of the office” message from your email, as well as tell your colleagues that you’ll be on vacation and not available for any communication – you don’t even need to say that it’s a staycation.

Plan

Think of the places in your city you’ve always wanted to visit but never had time nor money to do so. A staycation is a perfect chance to treat yourself – chic restaurants and a luxury spa, places and things you’ve never had a chance to do and visit. The list of places and activities is of the biggest importance here because all the planning you can delegate to a local travel assistant from E.C. Just tell what you wish to do and see and let a E.C member do their magic. Why plan and search yourself if you can get everything done and tailored to your wishes?

Book a hotel/rent an apartment

Staying at home while on a staycation is always an option but let’s think: is it really a good idea? Will you feel that you’re on vacation if the space around you stays the same? Plus, if you stay at home, you’ll have the temptation to spend “just a little bit” of time on redecorating, decluttering or something like that – which is good but it’s not the staycation! Let’s remember the main goal which makes a staycation work as well as a vacation: take a break from your day-to-day life. Is it possible while staying at home? In my opinion, not so much.

Book a nice hotel with a spa or some extraordinary apartment or even a house – you’ll instantly feel that staycation vibe.

Invite your friends

Another benefit of a staycation is that you are not separated from your friends and loved ones and finally can meet the friends you couldn’t meet because of your schedule. You can invite them to join you for any part of your staycation – for a dinner or to visit a party together, or even invite them to your temporary home. The good news is, that they don’t need to stay with you for the whole week or two and you can enjoy some precious time with yourself as well.

Staycation is a great and money-saving idea. Do you think it’s worth a try?

Let us know.

E.C.

5 Reasons to Use Personal Travel Assistants

Personal Assistant can be crucial if you are having a busy life and you can’t afford to spend time on managing your work. If you’ve watched USA Network TV Show, ‘Suits’ you probably know Donna – who is a personal assistant to one of the main characters, Harvey Specter. Her fans admire her for being able to run any kind of errands in a very quick, efficient and elegant way. I bet at least once in your life you’ve wished to have such an assistant. It’s totally understandable, we’ve all been there and we all deserve to have someone dedicated and resourceful behind our backs.

Having a personal assistant is still considered to be a luxury. So, you might think if you are not a big boss you’d never feel the privilege of having someone like Donna, who is always there for you, ready to help and make your life more carefree. But in fact, it’s neither a luxury nor a privilege.

If we think about the situation when you need a personal assistant, the answer is obvious: when you are abroad. No matter if you are a business or a leisure traveller, you’ve definitely experienced the need for a local insider while being in a foreign country. And that’s where Exclusive Concierge comes into play, making personal assistance both accessible and localized.

If you are still wondering why you need travel assistance services? Maybe this life will change your mind!

Saves time

I wonder, how much time was spent on trip advisors by all the tourists searching for recommendations? Add to that all the hours spent on finding transfers, accommodation, public transportation information, places to do and to see… I bet that if we summarize these hours we’ll get a couple of decades.

There’s also a problem with some trip advising recommendation services: you need to spend plenty of time trying to find relevant information, but even in that case you risk stumbling upon fake reviews, out-of-date information or not finding any info at all.

Exclusive Concierge local assistants will save your valuable time. All you need to do is describe your request, tell about your plans and preferences, and what do you know! Our Exclusive Concierge will make sure that your trip be the memorable ones.

Save your money

Using the information found on the Internet is not the best option when you’re going abroad. The chance to overpay is extremely high almost in every aspect of planning a trip: tickets, accommodation, and especially attractions and entertainment. Moreover, in almost every city there are tourist traps most travellers fall for and spend loads of money on. So, going to the overcrowded tourist restaurant which you found might be not the best idea and cost you a fortune.

Did you know that, for example, in Italy, in some places located in the tourist area you need to pay not only for your meal but also for just being in a restaurant? A local assistant will prevent such embarrassing and expensive mistakes by providing you with reliable insider information.

So, having a trustworthy local assistant not only allows you to feel safe and carefree while abroad but also helps you avoid all the typical tourist traps and save some money. In addition to having your back, your local travel assistant will recommend you best places and hidden gems according to your needs, interests, and budget.

Get access to tailor-made services

No matter how difficult and complex your request is, it is possible to find an Exclusive Concierge travel assistant who is ready to do that for you. Starting from everyday issues like meeting upon arrival, accompanying during your stay or booking a room in a hotel or tickets for the game to something really challenging. Imagine you need to travel somewhere for business purposes, but you suddenly fell ill, and you need someone to negotiate on your behalf. Sounds like a really challenging request, but it can really be done on Exclusive Concierge!

Speaking of business travel, personalization of travel assistance services is especially important because usually business trips are strictly limited in time. So, in that case, personalization and tailor-made services are the key, whether it’s about finding a co-working space for your business team or assisting and translating for you during a conference and finding business contacts.

Or, let’s say, you’d like your bachelor party for six of your friends to be organized in the country you’ve never been to. This is a real Exclusive Concierge use case. As you can guess, the request has been fully completed.

Exclusive Concierge Personal Travel Assistance Gastronomic Tour

Want to have a gastronomic tour in the best bars and pubs in the city? No problem! Need an assistant for translating at the conference, booking tables or arranging visits to doctors? Here you are! Need a transfer to the stadium and recommend the best sports bars? Sure thing! With Exclusive Concierge you can have it all.

Summing it up, having a personal travel assistant, whether it’s a business or a leisure trip, gives you a unique opportunity to get accessible tailor-made services according to your needs, interests, and budget and allows you to get the most of your trip.

Gain authentic experience

Authentic is a big buzzword in the travel industry and that is for good reason. According to the latest travel trends, authentic experiences and a desire to step off the beaten track are on their rise. We are all tired of typical tourist spots and standardized tours. Today’s travellers will rather save money on plane tickets than on impressions because travel is much more than just plane tickets and a booked apartment. It’s about new experiences, new people, and unforgettable local feel which you only can get if you have a local insider.

More and more tourists travel abroad to enrich their knowledge base and broaden their cultural horizon. Trips are now planned not only just to visit some places but also to try something new, achieve the goal and feel the unique local flavour: attend a traditional Chinese Tea Ceremony, try Italian appetizer, or see the area with the greatest street-art in the city.

Exclusive Concierge not only allows you not to think about problems like the language barrier, lack of information and insecurity but also gives you an access to such kind of authentic experiences and local expertise. It’s like having a local friend who is at the same time your personal assistant ready to deliver excellent service.

Make connections

And finally, making new connections. It’s hard to argue that it feels amazing to be part of local community, be surrounded by resourceful and likeminded people and dive into the genuine local atmosphere.

Having a personal travel assistant not only allows you to benefit from localized tailor-made services but also gives you a chance to feel and live like a local, surrounded by motivated and trustworthy people who are ready to have your back no matter what.

Moreover, connecting with a local for business matters gives you access to local expertise and local networking, which should not be underestimated within the context of business relations.

Localized services delivered by trustworthy resourceful locals can really make us reconsider the way we travel. Want to try? Contact Exclusive Concierge for life changing experiences.

How Concierge Services Can Improve Your Bottom Line

Employers today are increasingly looking to enhance their benefit programs to become an “Employer of Choice.” Achieving and maintaining this status can prove to be difficult as the cost of benefits rise.

What can employers do additionally that will best serve most of their diverse workforce? What benefit programs will have the most impact on productivity, morale, recruitment and retention, and be cost-effective to offer? Concierge services may be the answer.

Why Offer a Concierge Program?

Concierge programs are becoming increasingly popular for companies of all sizes. The reason—the variety of services provided within a concierge program appeal to all socioeconomic groups, genders, and ages of employees. Whether targeting the needs of an aging workforce, or Generation X or Y, these programs help employees better balance their work and personal lives by providing personal assistance and fulfilling any requests.

Over the years, more and more research has been done assessing the value and return on investment of concierge programs. Based on the latest research by The Premier Concierge the impact of these programs is tremendous. The following concierge statistics will give you an idea of how these programs can positively impact your workforce.

Concierge Statistics

What Does a Concierge Program Offer?

A concierge service consists of a variety of programs. Common services offered include: securing tickets to plays, concerts and sporting events; making travel arrangements; arranging for transportation and restaurant reservations; providing resources for home and car maintenance (plumbers, landscapers, house cleaners, mechanics); providing pet care and relocation assistance; and offering gifts, flowers and hard to find items. In addition, running employees’ personal errands is a great time saver. These tasks can include picking up prescriptions; getting new tires put on a car; overseeing a plumber at the employees’ residence; food and gift shopping; shipping packages; and much more! Discounted programs, such as theme park tickets; car rentals; ski resorts; spas, fitness centres, and retailers can also be provided.

An effective concierge program can be offered in a variety of ways. These include online (through a co-branded Web site), 24/7 telephonic access, or on-site (by providing full-time or part-time concierges and errand runners).

Concierge services tend to have higher utilization than most benefit programs. Average annual utilization for employers with 1,000 or more employees is 30–50% for the first year, and higher (over 100%) in subsequent years, as awareness spreads. Smaller organizations can achieve even higher usage (300-400% annually). Communicating these programs is key to achieving a high level of usage. Effective communications include varied methods, such as brochures, wallet cards, posters, flyers, newsletters, e-mail blasts, management and employee orientations, and on-site visibility events (Health Fairs, Open Enrolments, and New Hire Orientations).

Examples of companies who have successfully implemented concierge programs are varied. High tech, bio tech, law firms, health care organizations, financial and professional services are among the many industries whose employees benefit from these programs. And size doesn’t matter—companies as small as 20 employees to those with over 100,000 employees can utilize these services.

How Cost-Effective Are Concierge Services?

Employers can easily offer a cost-effective concierge program. Many companies start by providing a telephonic and/or web-based service and gradually add on-site concierges and/or errand runners (for selected locations) as their needs and budgets change. Offering on-site staff results in a more personalized program with higher utilization and a more compelling return on investment.

Typically, concierge programs are employer sponsored and are priced based on the total number of employees, services offered and anticipated utilization. There is also a start-up fee for a customized web site and all the initial communications materials.

50 different ways to use concierge services!

Learn about ways to use a concierge.

  1. Obtain tickets to concerts, special events, and sporting events.
  2. Provide transportation services.
  3. Plan travel and vacations.
  4. Provide business referral service.
  5. Make restaurant recommendations and/or reservations.
  6. Arrange for pet services.
  7. Do Internet research.
  8. Perform personalized shopping and delivery.
  9. Run to the post office.
  10. Pick up and deliver dry cleaning.
  11. Do grocery shopping.
  12. Stop by the hardware store.
  13. Provide senior care.
  14. Provide modified house-sitting and check-ins.
  15. Pick up or return a gift.
  16. Deliver meals.
  17. Conduct a home inventory.
  18. Pay bills.
  19. Take your car in for routine maintenance.
  20. Organize your home.
  21. Provide house cleaning services.
  22. Provide courier/delivery services.
  23. Deliver lunch to nurses and doctors at the hospital.
  24. Deliver a meal—breakfast, lunch, or dinner—to your family or an elderly parent.
  25. Pick up and deliver prescriptions.
  26. Arrange for repair and service calls.
  27. Return a library book or a video.
  28. Provide new mommy services.
  29. Plan meetings, events, and private parties.
  30. Provide personal chef services.
  31. Be a single parent helper.
  32. Provide employee relocation services.
  33. Deliver gift baskets and flowers.
  34. Arrange for landscaping services.
  35. Remind you of special days.
  36. Charter a private jet, yacht, or helicopter.
  37. Assist you at your event, wedding, or conference.
  38. A concierge can arrange for a security company to assist you.
  39. Book day spa services.
  40. Find and schedule a fashion and/or stylist consultant.
  41. Organize that messy office supply cabinet that nobody has time to do.
  42. Provide occasional and emergency babysitting.
  43. Find an expert to help with estate planning.
  44. Arrange for your tee time at the golf club.
  45. Book your appointments for you.
  46. New to the area? A concierge will give you a tour of the town.
  47. Book catering services.
  48. Plan and arrange a getaway weekend.
  49. Provide office help.
  50. Assist with your move—Let your concierge unpack those boxes and put it all away!

All services available at Exclusive Concierge.