“The internet changes the way people engage with the travel industry, but it doesn’t take away the need for service … Travel is pretty personal, and that’s an important experience for people.”
– Trevor Smith, president and manager, Maupin Travel
by Mimi Montgomery
photograph by Travis Long
Trevor Smith, 35, and his wife Jordan, 33, always knew they wanted to settle down in the Triangle – Jordan attended UNC and both have family in the area. The South Carolina natives knew the time was right when they met Tony Maupin of Raleigh’s Maupin Travel in 2014. After 30 years, Maupin was ready to move on from the company he’d launched in 1979. The Smiths jumped on the opportunity. Today, Trevor is president of the company, and Jordan manages much of the day-to-day. Maupin still contributes his guidance.
The Smiths’ plan is to expand on Maupin’s legacy, and they’ve already made strides. The company, a branch of Tzell Travel group, opened a new headquarters in Durham last July, which rounded out its presence in all three of the main Triangle cities.
Smith says that his company’s services, including its work securing the best rates for its clients, are increasingly valuable in an age of information overload. “It’s hard to trust all the information on the Internet,” says Smith. “When a customer works with one of our agents, they’re likely getting a better deal … they wouldn’t get on their own.” Plus, when you’re planning a big vacation for your family or sending employees across the country, he says, it’s nice to have a voice you know and can count on just a phone call away.
Some trips Smith is most excited about booking for his clients include riverboat cruises in Vietnam, Russia, and Germany; African safaris; and multi-generational trips with itineraries crafted for grandparents, adult children, and grandchildren.
Of course, he looks forward to doing some travel of his own, too. He and his wife are homeschooling their children so they’ll have more time for future trips. But with a six-year-old, four-year-old, two-year-old, and a newborn, that might be a ways off. “There’s an inverse relationship between the number of kids (you have) and amount of travel (you do),” he says, laughing.
Raleigh: 510 Daniels St.; Durham: 404 Hunt St., Suite 140; Chapel Hill: 604 Meadowmont Village Circle; maupintravel.com