Fernie’s Mountain High Travel under new ownership

Lori Caravetta has become the new owner of Mountain High Travel and Tours (MHTT) believing there's a need in the area for a travel agency.

Lory Caravetta of Mountain High Travel and Tours.

As of Aug. 1 Lori Caravetta has become the new owner of Mountain High Travel and Tours (MHTT), deciding to buy the company as there is a need in the Elk Valley for a travel agency. Caravetta is a veteran at MHTT, with eight years of experience working at the Fernie based business. MHTT is a fully accredited travel agency that has more than just a variety of travel and tour options. The company also sells cruises, travel and medical insurance and has become a wedding specialist in the area.

“Being the owner of a travel agency has the amazing satisfaction of becoming part of our clients journeys, celebrations and sometimes their support in the wake of a crisis,” said Caravetta. “With all the concerns that travelers have today, with identity theft, with the internet and all the problems that can come from booking online, and with our ever changing world, with us they have accountability and professionalism.”

Caravetta told The Free Press that clients will not see too many changes to the company, with store hours remaining the Monday to Friday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday by appointment that MHTT was open previously. She also added that the company would do their best to price match travel and tours.

“When you book an All Inclusive vacation with WestJet Vacations or Air Canada Vacation or Sunwing etc. you are paying for your trip and paying the big companies commission also,” she said. “Why not let us be the travel agency that does the bookings and is accountable for that booking and make the commission from the big companies instead; it literally does not cost you a penny more.”

MHTT offers a monthly travel destination, with the popularity of the current destination; Caravetta said she’s extending the destination another month.

“Right now most of the clients that are travelling are in Europe and aboard and that will continue till the end of September,” she said.

While Caravetta agrees that Fernie and the Elk Valley is an awesome destination, she believes that she doesn’t need to twist people’s arms to travel.

“The world is an amazing place and sparking imagination and desire to try new food, new views, new cultures, and of course just having Margarita’s by the pool is not a hard thing to convince people to do,” she said. “I think it is also important for our younger generation, be it our kids our young adults, to have an understanding of the world we live in by travelling with their family or friends. It helps everyone to appreciate the beauty that we have at home and the amazing beauty our world has to imprint on us.”

The most common travel bookings are usually all inclusive get-aways that are closer to the equator than Fernie, with Mexico, Dominican, Jamaica and Cuba being listed by Caravetta as the most popular. Europe is a close second to the hot spots according to Caravetta.

“We love Europe in the Valley and the tours have come a long way from back in the day so our more mature clients prefer the prepackaged tours, they will even piggy back them on with other tours just to get the most out of the flight prices. This is a great idea and is getting very popular every year,” she said. “I find that of course the winter is busy for travel as is Spring Break but now with the love of Europe and other countries abroad and all the amazing tours we do have a year round travel community.”

MHTT will be hosting an event at the beginning of September to welcome new and previous customers to the business.

“On Wednesday Sept. 7 2016 we will be having a Chamber of Commerce Mingler and we invite all new and existing clients to come to the event and meet myself and Samantha Young,” she said. “We will have drinks and snacks on location at 652 2 Ave. from 5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. we will also be having a draw for a set of luggage so please come on by.”