SHADYSIDE - Shadyside's Mindi Moore always wanted to work in the travel industry. That was her intended field of study upon entering the collegiate arena.
But Moore, like many others embarking on that journey, had a little too much fun early on and decided to return home.
She began working in the home health industry, but that pang she felt to work in the travel and tourism field never subsided.
T-L Photo/MIKE HUGHES
MINDI MOORE of Moore Fun Travel in Shadyside is ready to assist you in all of your vacation and trip planning.
Moore has successfully battled cancer and figured it was time to stop dreaming and start living.
After some web surfing, she came across online training to become a travel agent and Moore found her avenue into the industry.
Now Moore operates her agency, Moore Fun Travel, out of her home in Shadyside and is looking to help area residents make the most out of their trips and vacations.
"Life is too short to not do what you want to do," she said. "This is what I've always wanted to do and after I finished my training, I decided that a home-based travel agency was the way to go."
There is an advantage to working out of her home, aside from construction or rent costs, plus monthly utilities and other fees.
She receives commissions from the airlines, hotels and cruise ships she deals with. But because she's independent, Moore is able to set her own agency service charges that help to keep costs down.
Moore is also able to utilize her background in home health to better serve a subsection of her client base ... those with special needs.
She is a SNG Certified Accessible Travel Advocate, one of fewer than 500 nationwide.
"I am specializing in cruises with the Special Needs at Sea group," Moore said.
"So many people would travel if they knew there was an option out there for them.
"I can have whatever the client needs delivered to the ship, hotel or theme park.
"It's great for people with a permanent disability or even short term. If people need oxygen or need scooters or motorized wheelchairs, it's available and I can make sure they have it ready.
"My experience in working with the elderly and special needs patients because of my medical background makes me more accessible as a travel agent to be with those with special needs as an advocate. They can explain what they need and I will know exactly what to look for and what to make sure they have."
Moore knows that it's an interesting and equally challenging time to become a travel agent. Seemingly every year, more and more vacationers are bypassing assistance and hopping online, booking their trips and tickets through online vendors like Travelocity, Orbitz and Priceline.
While that method does have its advantages, so does working with a licensed agent.
"We have access to certain, we call them portals and tools," Moore said. "We can book tickets and packages in advance and have everything you need, from travel and vehicles to rooms and entertainment taken care of ahead of time and it's all included in the overall price.
"We give you everything you're going to need. Plus, if there's a problem, I'm only a phone call away and will work to get it resolved quickly."
Moore is generally open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. She is located at 4444 Highland Ave. She may be reached by calling 740-325-1479.
You can come to her or she will travel to your house or a predetermined location to figure out what is the best package for you.
You can also visit her at her website at www.moorefuntravel.com