How Southern Star Travel Defines Quality
SST's value proposition is unlike that of other companies. We offer full itineraries built around enabling you to fully engage at your destination with personal time built in to allow you to individually explore. Our enormous first hand experience of the countries we visit enables a wealth of information through education. Above all, we partner based on the shared values - the idea of travel with respect, to preserve, to educate, to immerse oneself - that our founders took out into the world long before Southern Star Travel ever came into existence.
What’s clever about traveling in the developing world is that higher levels of luxury are available to you at a less than luxury price tag. That is if your idea of luxury is in line with ours. Travelers are surely moving away from the conspicuous consumption model of luxury travel and the world is better for it. Slowly we are coming to realize that not even the developed world can sustain the most luxurious lifestyles and fewer people are interested anyway.
In addition to conspicuous consumption, luxury travel was defined by exclusivity – it wasn’t enough to stay in a 5 star hotel so the top shelf traveler found a travel consultant to book them a property. Dining in the finest restaurant wasn’t high end enough unless there was a private dining room where they could be alone. Seeing the wonders of the world was too base an experience unless they could be removed from the crowds of other tourists interested in having a similar, though less expensive, experience.
Conspicuous consumption destroys the natural environment that travelers leave home to see and walling oneself off breeds contempt from locals and fellow travelers alike. Don’t worry though, you’ll be glad to know that when we replace consumption with sustainability and exclusivity with responsibility it is still possible to provide a high quality experience that in our estimation is more valuable an experience than the luxury travel of the past.
First and foremost we are a service that seeks to answer the questions you have about traveling to the destinations where we are experts and in facilitating your trip there. Before you even contact us we are serving you by making our valuable skills and experience free for consumption on the web and leading the conversation around international travel and tourism to a sustainable and responsible future.
Having been in contact we will be in a position to tailor your trip in such a way as to be as personal and attentive to your needs as possible which is important because it just so happens that we make our money by putting you on our trips and when you come with us you’ll have the undivided attention of our guides in the field (who may even be one of our founders!) and our guides in turn are supported by our world headquarters that will always respond to any need. In this way we seek to anticipate and exceed any and all expectations you have from your travel experience.
After you have returned home we hope you’ll will stay in touch with us and the people you’ll meet through ours and their online platforms. It is our intention to do everything possible to convert you into the kind of traveler that the world needs to effect a bright future (without being pushy) and our hope that you will take what you’ll have gained in heightened awareness and broadened perspective and spread it wherever you go.
While there may not be a 5 star hotel or a fine dining experience at every stop in each of our destinations we will take you to the best of what’s around and unless you’ve been out in the world a great deal we bet we can show you a place or serve you a meal that is as lovely as any you’ve ever seen.
When we look for places to stay we look at the rooms and the kitchens sure but we also look for a culture of hospitality so that you are just getting a bed and a hot meal or two but you’ll get the experience in staying in a place that is somebody’s home and that somebody is genuinely interested in making you feel at home.
Since we put a premium on authentic experiences of connection we’ll be more likely to find that small restaurant that not only meets and exceeds our health standards but might also have that open kitchen and that passionate chef that likes to share the same room as his or her guests.
There is one area where privacy and exclusivity is perhaps even more important traveling today through the developing world than in the outdated luxury model and that’s transport. Safety and punctuality are of critical importance to us and our partners and the realities of the developing world make is so as to need private transport for most of our transfers.
Access is the last foundation of the superlative travel experience and one at which we excel. Through our experience and relationships we are better suited than anyone to make your vacation an immersive and participatory one. We and our partners open the door to the best places to suit your interests so that you can be in your destination on a deep and memorable level.
We are so richly rewarded through our relationships with our in-country partners and we want you to meet them too! You’ll remember your destination and your guide but let’s also form lasting connections to the people and organizations doing good work where we’re going. So long as we have to eat and sleep let’s not just do it in comfort and style but let us introduce you to hosts that are genuinely interested to meet you and share in your adventure.
We may be specialty travel operators in the international tourism industry and we may have a product and service that we call high quality but those are just the words we are expected to use to communicate what we do with the world. The business we are really in is life experiences and it’s a tough one but rewarding when done right. It’s also difficult to balance the high quality without breaking into the luxury price tag because how do you price relationships and experience? We do it and we try to keep it reasonable.