What’s on your travel playlist?
Today, travel is more than a plane ticket and a stamp in your passport. For people (and donors) everywhere, it’s a vessel for reconnecting with the world, creating new memories and leaving your handprints and footprints on the world.
For nonprofits, it’s a way to reimagine and revolutionize your fundraising strategy. By bringing an element of excitement to fundraising events, one-of-a-kind travel packages can enhance your creative strategy with a wealth of opportunities for optimization and customization. Typically, travel produces high-ticket proceeds in tandem with easy fulfillment. Now, that’s a playlist that everyone will add to their lineup!
Welcome onboard the OneCause Flight Number 2021 with service form Anywhere to the Destination Of Your Dreams. To get ready to rock your re-entry to travel, fun, and one-of-a-kind vacations – plug in your earbuds and press play.
Here’s our amazing, jet-setting travel playlist.
The first album on our playlist has dynamite packages that are sure to radiate the travel vibes that your donors are looking for. Our first hit has the lucky winners west to Los Angeles, where they’ll score Loge Level Tickets to the 2021 American Music Awards with access to the exclusive after party. Then a drive along scenic Highway 1 north to the Napa Vineyards, where a private wine tasting and tour of the Schramsberg Cave awaits your donors, courtesy of Winspire.
It’s time to head east and link up with Charity Ace for a 5-night stay in a ski-in/ski-out residence located in Telluride, Colorado. After time in the mountains, Charity Ace will take your donors further east to explore Boston, while staying in the iconic Fairmont Copley Plaza and enjoying the North End to the Freedom Trail food and history tour. To round out the American tour, they’ll head south for a 3-night stay at the Renaissance Nashville Hotel with a private tour of the Hall of Fame and Ryman Auditorium.
Our next album has all the European vibes covered. The Mediterranean air is calling your donors’ names, as Winspire treats them to a 5-night luxury stay in Athens and Mykonos with an exclusive guided tour. Opa!
Then, they’ll travel like heiresses as they make their way to explore the rivieras with a 4-night stay at the Fairmont Monte Carlo and One Day French and Italian Riviera tour. Chocolate caliente y churros anyone? That’s right! Off to Spain. Winners will do a 4-night stay in Bilbao and San Sebastian with a private dinner and museum tour for two. No European adventure is complete without Winspire’s coveted Game of Thrones Journey that features a 6-night stay in Dublin, Antrim Coast, Belfast and Historic Castles, with special Guinness VIP tickets.
In the queue next is an album that will take your donors Down Under. In Melbourne, Auction Packages has curated an all-inclusive stay at the Park Hyatt. After a night at one of the most glamorous hotels in the world, then enjoy the Great Ocean Road Tour. Winners can cool off at the world-famous Bells Beach or end the day with the quintessential Australian backyard barbie. Then, off to Sydney for a once-in-a-lifetime Hunter Valley Wine Tasting Tour.
Before the plane lands, there’s time for one more album that screams island rejuvenation. Reggae music blasts in Jamaica. With Winspire, lucky travelers will indulge in a 5-night stay at the Hyatt Ziva centered in the famous Montego Bay. Then, off to meet Charity Ace in Barbados to stay in a private villa with a personal chef. No Caribbean tour is complete without an exclusive scuba diving excursion. Luckily, Winspire can hook travelers up with a 5-night all-inclusive stay at the Thatch Caye Resort with ultimate scuba diving for two.
Touchdown and welcome to the long-awaited, ultimate vacation. Now that you’ve (hopefully) added our travel playlist to your queue, you may be thinking to yourself – “How can I implement these showstopping packages into my organization’s fundraising strategy?” Well, look no further. Together, we’ll travel from your starting point to your donors’ destinations and everywhere in between. It’s smooth cruising from here!
Read on to learn:
In the wake of COVID-19, the idea of “wanderlust” is ever-present. As restrictions begin to lift and we return to normalcy, CNBC’s Jim Cromer says, “It [travel] is going to be a boom here in this country, and I don’t think people are ready for it.”
In fact, our travel partner, Auction Packages, says, “So far, in 2021, we see more and more supporters anticipating their next vacation by getting behind nonprofits’ missions with the purchase of travel and unique experiences!”
How can you be ahead of the curve? By enhancing your silent auctions with the limitless possibilities that a travel package offers. Traveling for good is so attractive in the fundraising space because there is nothing like hopping on a plane, knowing that you helped the charity of your choice make a positive impact in one’s life. According to American Express, more than half of Americans have a distinct travel budget.
Our travel partner, Winspire, says, “46% of donors who bid on travel packages stated they have a budget of at least $10,000 for these types of vacations … and a recent study of the philanthropy landscape showed that 47% of donors say they had more to give.”
Why not give to you, by bidding on travel packages that are priced well, support a good cause, and create memories that are priceless? It’s a win-win-win!
Much like letting a pilot fly a plane, shorten your to-do list by allowing a travel partner to select your packages and guide you along the way. 365 fundraising is a year-round job, and operating a nonprofit is certainly a tall order. Put the focus on your donors, creating impact and telling stories; a risk-free travel experiences company will do the rest. It is also important to note that travel partners are knowledgeable about booking flights and hotels, and they often have the key to those one-of-a-kind, show-stopping experiences and packages that you’re looking for. Northern Tanzania safari tour for two, anyone?
Now that you’ve chosen a travel partner and drafted a travel package wish list, what’s next?
Keep reading for some inside tips on maximizing the use of travel packages for your next auction or event.
Many people in the fundraising space will immediately conflate a travel package with a live auction, and a live auction is a great place to start. But the optimization and flexibility does not stop there. Travel packages can also be used in a specialty category in a silent auction. You may want to consider using a raffle and note the opportunity to be advantageous in minimizing risk. For example, by saying, “We must sell at least ‘x’ number of tickets in order to fulfill the travel package,” you’re providing your organization with insurance and the chance to switch a travel package to a cash prize if the minimum number of tickets sold is not achieved.
Another insider tip is to use travel as an incentive within your Peer 2 Peer program, rewarding your top fundraiser/donor with a free trip.
A nonprofit’s favorite question to hear is, “What can I do?” If a donor approaches your team with a desire to contribute to your event or silent auction, it is a great idea to ask them if they would be interested in covering the cost of a trip. Think about this example: Your nonprofit cost for a travel package is $1500 and the retail value is $3000. You can get $500 each from three donors, to which you can recognize an in-kind donation of $1000 each in accordance with the trip’s value. They can then underwrite this donation. At OneCause, we love win-win situations! The donors will receive an in-kind donation for a higher retail value, and you’re receiving an underwritten donation that covers the expense of a trip.
Don’t be afraid to offer doubles, heck, even triples! If a certain package is popular with the “bid now” button, you can contact the second bidder and notify them that a second trip is available. Two heads, or, in this case, two plane tickets are better than one! Same holds true for your live auction. Que up a second package and permit your auctioneer to announce a second experience on-the-fly to underscore the “Ooohs” and “Aaahs.”
Ben Farrell, Owner, Custom Benefit Auctions, shares his experience, “Selling multiple trips is always good because it means more money for the charity. There are many ways to offer multiple sales. One is the surprise method, ‘Okay everyone the donor has just agreed to donate a SECOND trip!!!’ Another way is to offer the trip at a fixed price. If the price is great, you can sell lots of trips. One charity sold over 30 trips at an event as the last item offered in the night!!”
It’s a yes from us! Our team at OneCause strongly recommends that you search for an auctioneer, specifically one familiar with nonprofits, high-end auction items and various types of events, whether it be in-person or virtual. To receive the highest yield on items like the travel packages mentioned above, it’s all about your positioning and marketing ability and an auctioneer will help you get there, providing that important return on investment.
Farrell commented, “A professional fundraising auctioneer brings experience from previous events, techniques for efficient and profitable fundraising, creative ideas on all aspects of the event from sponsorship strategies, interactive games, creative auction ideas, timeline considerations, ticketing, raffles, and Fund-a-Need opportunities. In today’s climate, experience with online events is essential.”
Why not make travel destinations the donor’s choice? Travel is a very personal matter. Not everyone likes to ski and, believe it or not, not everyone likes the sun. Come up with a catchy name for your travel package: for example: ‘Mountains or Beaches, You Pick,’ and give your donors a choice for added excitement and engagement. The ‘choice’ approach is key to attracting the greatest number of bidders.
Farrell explains, “The biggest component…is choice for the bidders. If bidders have a choice on where to go, when to go, and how many people can go, then there’s more interest. For example, offering a trip a Fairmont Resort and Spa, is good. However, offering a choice to pick any Fairmont Resort and Spa destination…..that’s much better.”
If you’re wondering how to auction travel in a virtual setting, you’ve come to the right place. The answer is Virtual Streaming Events by OneCause. After experiencing decades upon decades of extravagant, in-person events, we know how challenging it can be to think outside of the box especially given these unique circumstances. Luckily, we’ve spent months thinking about virtual innovation to develop a platform for you to host and execute the event of your dreams and broadcast to your donors’ living rooms. Before planning your virtual event, we recommend reading our featured success stories and networking with fellow nonprofits as well as your technology provider to discover how to deliver the exact donor engagement that you’re looking for, whether your donors live five miles from you or thousands of miles away.
There are so many ways to highlight and bring excitement to travel packages through a live broadcast:
So, you’ve created your travel playlist and begun to pack your bags. Before you depart, we’ve compiled an important list of questions to ask your travel partner before takeoff:
It has been quite the ride! As our journey ends, we hope you’ve jotted down our insider tips and begun to build your own travel playlist with your donors in mind. We can’t wait to see where your nonprofit will travel next and with the new “Choose Now, Pack Later” program by OneCause, we can provide the tools you need for a seamless flight.
You have reached your destination. Where to next?
For more information on creative ideas and efficient methods in fundraising, be sure to check out these additional resources: