Kelly Lewis grew up in Hawaii with eight siblings, always resigned to the fact that traveling the world was but a pipedream. Today, Kelly earns money through her travels, even founding the annual Women’s Travel Fest, a consumer travel event for women who love to travel. Before delving into the details, Kelly waded into her talk with simple questions; “How many of you like to travel? How many of you would like to travel more? How many of you would like to make money while you travel?”

If you’ve answered yes to all of the above, then for your consideration, we list some of the steps and sacrifices needed to build a business in travel.

Fight for your idea

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Kelly believes that everyone should pursue and fight for their ideas; “If you have a new idea, something that keeps nagging at you, something you know you want to do, start doing stuff about it. Talk to other people you think could help you get it off the ground.”

You don’t need money to start a business

Kelly suggested that a lot of people assume it takes a large amount of money to start a business, however, the truth is that you only need the passion and drive; “I think there’s a misconception that starting businesses means you’ve got to have a lot of money. You don’t, you just have to have the gumption to do it, and the will to be able to suffer a little bit until it gets going.”

Pick a niche


She underlined the importance of understanding your abilities and weaknesses, and steering yourself into a niche that you would perform in; “There’s lots of different types of travel within this industry. You need to figure out which niche fits you best, and from there find out what sector of the industry you want to be in. There is the media side, which I’m in, which is writing, blogging, and photography; there’s also hospitality, working on cruise ships for example. Find your niche, figure out which area you can excel in.”

Getting funding

While earlier stating money is not necessary, Kelly does confess that at some point, funding will be necessary to propel a business forward. She talked about the plethora of options when it comes to both investment and sponsorship; “There are many platforms to raise funding, especially on the internet. But the thing is, you have to be comfortable asking for what you want. Sometimes, as women, it is uncomfortable to talk about money because it feels like a taboo or something we are not allowed to do. But that’s how you get to where you need to go.”

Build yourself a brand


Perhaps the most important point, Kelly emphasised the need to position yourself and your company in a specific way. All material and produce needs to reflect this position, and it will help propel the business forward; “You have to find what success is to you. For me, I not only wanted to travel the world and be paid to do it, I wanted to be a known expert in this industry, I wanted to be one of the top women promoting other women to travel the world; and I am.”

Want to know more about building a business in travel? Check out the entire video to have access to more of Kelly’s tips in detail;

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