About Laurie Keith
Laurie started her career in the travel industry while living and working abroad in the Dominican Republic over 20 years ago. Upon her return back to Canada in 1994, she completed a Travel and Tourism Certificate Program and started her own travel agency called "Campus Travel". Campus Travel was instrumental in assisting students to work, study and volunteer abroad.
With the success and knowledge gained from running her agency and creating unique travel packages around the world, Laurie expanded her horizons and founded and published a monthly travel newspaper called, "The Traveller's Journal." The newspaper was distributed across Alberta at grocery stories, libraries, cafes, and restaurants and was a great success for travel advertisers and readers alike. It was also an avenue for Laurie to commence her travel writing career.
In 2000, both Campus Travel and The Traveller's Journal were sold to a publicly traded company on the TSX where she was employed to manage their marketing campaign and the newspaper. When the company cease trading and closed it's doors, Laurie became the Director of Sales and Marketing at Cardinal Travel and Tours, an inbound travel tour operator. Gainful knowledge was earned by learning not only the wholesale travel business but also the inbound travel and tourism market. However, the entrepreneurial spirit prevailed and by 2004 and after completing a diploma in Web Development and Design, she started another company called, Bigworld Travel Marketing Group Inc, where she consulted travel companies on their marketing campaigns for both the inbound and outbound travel markets as well as for retail and wholesale travel companies.
In 2004, Laurie recognized the need for a specialized travel company to cater to the honeymoon and destination wedding niche travel markets as both a wholesaler and retailer. Equipped with only a concept of the business, she traveled to London, England to the World Travel Mart, and developed the first supplier contracts for honeymoon and destination wedding packages to be distributed throughout Canada. In her national product launch the following February, she hired celebrities Rob and Amber from the TV hit shows, 'Survivor' and 'Amazing Race' to act as Ambassadors to her newly developed company, Romantic Planet Vacations Inc.
In addition to running Romantic Planet Vacations, Laurie founded "The Romance Travel Show," Canada's only nationwide bridal show for the niche market of honeymoons and destination weddings. In this annual Spring event, Laurie has united travel suppliers who target and cater to this niche market to thousands of pre-qualified brides and grooms across Canada. The exhibitors, trade show, catering, venues, presentation and attendees are developed and orchestrated by Laurie year after year.
Over the past ten years, Laurie has seen a 215% growth in the destination wedding market and continues to build her businesses and brands across Canada. She has had the opportunity to travel to over thirty five countries and hundreds of hotels and resorts. She has spoken at numerous events around the world and has been showcased in the media including "The Breakfast Channel", "Today's Bride Magazine" and "Travel Weekly." regarding travel marketing and social media, unique travel destinations and the honeymoon and destination wedding niche markets.
She finally had her very own destination wedding in Playa Mujeres, Mexico in 2013.
Backed by her University of Calgary studies in Education and experience as a teacher prior to her travel career, Laurie now offers public speaking engagements relating to her expertise of entrepreneurialism, extensive travel experience, hands-on approach to travel marketing and a passion for the honeymoon and destination wedding markets.