coronavirus pandemic

SoCal Travel Agency Adapts to the Pandemic's ‘New Normal'

L&B Travel based in LA has received less clients and business as a result of COVID-19.

L&B Travel

This is part of a series of reports featuring Southern California businesses and the challenges they face during the coronavirus pandemic.

With closed borders, many countries have not been accessible to outside visitors during the pandemic.

This created a problem for L&B Travel, a Los Angeles based travel agency. Founded in 2006 by Svetlana Stein, the agency offers arrangements for national and worldwide leisure and business travel. Big destinations like Europe, Tahiti ,Fiji, Australia and Japan are requested most often.

But 2020 has narrowed travel options.

"Initially, it was a lot of canceling trips and trying to get refunds for everybody," Sebastian Heenen, office manager at L&B Travel, said. "Lately, the game is more or less working around what is open and what is available."

Before the pandemic, three employees worked in the office and four worked at home. Once the pandemic hit, the entire staff worked from home.

"It has allowed us to actually be more flexible and check in with clients beyond work hours," Heenen said.

"Our Yelp page is probably our most lucrative outreach material", he said. "If you search for a travel agency in Los Angeles, we are usually in the top three, if not first spot."

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