6 reasons to book a bespoke travel experience

Aerial view of Cape Tribulation

Jenna Meade

Posted August 05, 2021

Pack your bags - personalised travel itineraries are no longer reserved for the rich and famous.

Fancy falling asleep under a blanket of stars next to Ningaloo Reef, settling into a sunset bush dinner in the Red Centre or learning to surf in Byron Bay? Pull out your bucket list - your bespoke travel experience awaits. 

Bespoke travel experiences are personalised itineraries curated just for you or your group, focusing on unique, local and hard-to-find adventures. It’s like having your own travel agent on the ground ticking every box - and making sure your journey goes smoothly along the way.

Designer Journeys delivers these experiences in 70 countries through its global network of local designers, with more than 1500 customisable itineraries available for RACV Members to explore and enquire online with today. As an RACV trusted travel partner, we asked CEO Matt McCann to talk us through the perks of the game-changing new trend in travel. 

People walking on the beach

Beautiful Byron Bay. 


Tailor a unique itinerary

Gone are the days of lounging at a resort for the entirety of a trip. Travellers are craving more unique experiences. “Our people get you in and show you a whole new side that you might not have thought existed, like visiting a museum at night,” Matt says. From organising a historical tour so an American family could understand their Lithuanian heritage to creating an unforgettable 50th birthday celebration in Italy for a group of 40, Designer Journeys makes these experiences meaningful. And they’re accessible to everyone - not just the rich and famous. “We have our golden travellers who are a little bit older going behind the scenes and exploring culture; families who want to spend quality time together with an equal mix of adventure and relaxation, and younger travellers who want to switch off from their busy careers and have a whole amazing experience planned for them,” he says.

 Uncover your own backyard

According to Tourism Australia, Australians are keen to explore more in 2021 - and we’re eyeing off destinations closer to home. People are hungry for experiences in their own backyard to expand their knowledge of their country. “People are returning to places in Australia they’ve been before, and we’re helping them to explore them in new and different ways,” Matt says. “We’re seeing people doing the self-drive in Western Australia from Perth down to Margaret River, staying in lodges and tackling big walks in Tasmania and doing a combination of the reef and rainforests in Far North Queensland.”

Uluru during the day

Uluru is a popular destination for Australian travellers.


Connect with culture and community

Travellers are seeking curated adventures dotted with purposeful perks. They want to get closer to the culture and connect to the places they’re visiting. Matt highlights the Red Centre and Uluru among the most in-demand destinations for Australian travellers. “People want to understand the community that live and work in that area, and be able to do more and go to the places off the standard path,” he says.

Get up close to nature

Another 2021 travel motivator listed by Tourism Australia is travelling to regenerate. After a turbulent 2020, we’re using travel to reconnect and revitalise, with spa holidays, yoga retreats and multi-day hikes rising in popularity. “The trend we’re seeing is people are keen to go and do something exercise-driven,” Matt says. “To do a walk, go hiking or immerse themselves in outdoor experiences.”

Woman coming out of European bakery

When travel is back, it can take you from the centre of Australia to the streets of Europe with a bespoke trip tailored just for you. 


Receive COVID-safe travel support

A bespoke travel experience has got your back in a COVID-safe world. With your local travel agent on the ground, you’ll receive up-to-date knowledge about requirements that need to be met in each destination. “Our local designers know what’s required to get into a state, a country or an attraction,” Matt says. “They’re on the front foot, they can say, "this has changed and here’s what you need to do now.” With growing concerns about highly-populated cities and tourist sites during the pandemic, they can also steer travellers away from the crowds. “They’ll show you the insider’s way of getting around these places - and how to have a good time while you’re there,” he says.

Confidence to look ahead - and abroad

Although Australia’s borders are closed with no confirmed reopening date, Matt says many Australians are planning and booking their overseas adventures for 2022. Family holidays to Asia, culinary jaunts around Europe and skiing in New Zealand are back on the cards, with 250 of Designer Journeys’ tailored trips covered by a money-back guarantee.

“There’s a huge amount of pent-up demand to travel, with people telling us they’re desperate to have something to look forward to,” Matt says. “All of a sudden, we’ve got smiling Members who are looking ahead and feeling excited about exploring the world again.”