ABOUT MONTAGE TRAVEL
Cassie Tetro, founder of Montage Travel.
Hello! In case we haven’t met, I’m Cassie, a travel advisor and self-confessed travel addict in a long-term love affair with Europe. I consider myself a citizen of the world; I’m based in Atlanta, was born in New York and also have Italian citizenship. And every time I travel, I can’t help but feel like a part of me belongs to that destination too.
As a travel consultant, it’s my job (and passion!) to build personalized itineraries to anyone looking to make the most out of their european vacations, based on their own interests, needs and travel style.
Montage Travel is the result of both a lifetime of daydreaming and passion for traveling and, oddly enough, a frustrating experience. I’ll get to that in a bit – but first, you need to know a bit more about me.
You see, I’ve always been a very methodical and detailed person. I like things organized, from working papers and bookshelves to shopping lists. Every decision I make is based on research, detailed comparison or benchmarking.
Now, back to my frustrating experience.
Years ago, I went to Paris for the first time. It was a 7-day trip to one of the top cities on any tourist’s bucket list. Based on what I just told you about me, you could guess how I’ve spent all of my free time in the months before traveling abroad.
That’s right… Research, research, and more research!
After all, I was going to the City of Light! Top destination to the hopeless romantics and home to the Musée du Louvre, the fabled Cathedral of Notre-Dame, Eiffel Tower, and so much more!
So, over the duration of months, I had soaked in all the information I could and made a list of all the top attractions and activities I wanted to visit and experience. In my head I had become a top-notch travel expert…
…only to realize I had failed.
On my very first trip to Paris, I didn’t do the #1 thing on my list: go up the Eiffel Tower. I kept putting it off to a “clearer day”, a “less busy day”… Before I knew it, it was our last day in Paris and we didn’t have time.
The feeling of missed opportunity invaded my thoughts.
As if that wasn’t enough, I also didn’t fully enjoy most things because of how physically and mentally exhausted I was after the first couple of days. I had packed my itinerary too tight – and that was incredibly hard on my travel stamina. Everything felt rushed, nothing was truly savored.
Since then, I have learned two things (and these may very well be my biggest tips to all the “do-it-yourself” travel planners out there):
But the story didn’t end there!
That unfortunate experience was the biggest lesson I could’ve wished for. My approach to trip planning changed completely. I became so much better at figuring out how I could optimize my travel itineraries based on my personality, pace, interests and other variables.
Over time and the more often I traveled, the more my friends and family would come to me asking for travel advice. The advice turned into crafting itineraries for them to follow.
And because my custom itineraries allowed them to live such memorable journeys, these friends and family members would encourage me to turn my hobby into a business – they thought plenty of people out there would really love the service and appreciate the personal commitment I put on building each and every travel plan.
That’s how, after a lot of researching, networking, personal commitment and time investment, a passion became a hobby; and that hobby brought Montage Travel to life.