Coasters & Castles Travel History
Coasters & Castles Travel began by high school friends, Lynne Macolini and April Botta. Lynne and April both share the “Disney gene,” a passion for all things Disney and an obsession to learn as much about Disney destinations as possible. Both had vast experience planning personal trips as well as trips for family and friends for years.
Lynne began professionally helping clients with their Disney destination travel after being laid off from her job and seeing a friend’s travel business on Facebook. She had found her dream job and was excited to join an agency to further develop her travel planning expertise.
April had a similar start to the business, being also laid off and noticing on Facebook that Lynne was a travel advisor specializing in Disney Destinations. She had been trying to think of how to turn her Disney obsession into a business and was excited to learn it was actually possible. With Lynne’s help, she joined the same agency.
We started working together at vendor shows almost immediately and learned that we worked really well together. We found we shared many of the same values and principles, and we complemented each other and could fill in each other’s thoughts. While at a show, April mentioned that she would like to open her own agency someday. Lynne laughed because she had the same plan. We went from someday to 10 years from now, to 5 years from now, to 2 years and then a tragic event for a friend made us realize how precious time is and that we do not know wat tomorrow brings, so we said let’s do it now.
We started our research on what we needed to do to make it happen. Thus began a lot of hard work, meetings, and notes to develop an organization that we could be proud to own. We apply our work experience, with Lynne having a strong financial and management background and a masters in Leadership, and with April having many years of retail management, marketing, training and personnel development to the creation of our agency. We have both been to Walt Disney World over 30 times, have been on Disney Cruises, and have been to Disneyland. We both look forward to our first adventures at Aulani and an Adventures by Disney destination.
On January 5, 2016, we made our dream a reality. We opened Coasters & Castles Travel. We are determined to make this a unique experience for advisors and for our clients. Training, development, and support are the cornerstone of what we want for our advisors. We would rather have less advisors who have the opportunity to learn, develop, and grow into great advisors then to have a high number of advisors that are just left to their own to sell what they can. We do not and will not ever have sales quotas. We believe in investing in our advisors, and we welcome contributions from our team to make Coasters & Castles Travel a truly great organization. We work with our advisors to set goals for themselves and to help them achieve those goals.
Culture is a top priority for us. We feel that our advisors are members of our family and we are extremely proud to see the special friendships that have been created within the agency. We also welcome partner teams. We have had mother/ daughter teams and spousal teams.
We started 2018 with a new designation. We were honored to have earned the distinction of being “Earmarked” by Disney. That means we are an “Authorized Disney Vacation Planner”. This is a great honor and responsibility.
In June of 2019, Coasters & Castles Travel was honored with the President’s Award from Travel Leaders. This award was in recognition of our huge sales growth in 2018.
In January 2020, the agency expanded into two new specialties Cruises (Ocean & River) and All-Inclusive Resorts.
In July of 2020, we were honored with the invitation by Universal Orlando Resort to be a “U-Preferred Partner”. This is similar to the Earmarked program that Disney has. We are very excited for this opportunity.
We were excited to be promoted to the silver level with Universal’s U-Preferred Program in January of 2022.
Coasters & Castles Travel has expanded into travel to Europe in 2022 and plan to add Destination Weddings and Luxury Travel by the end of the year. This will be under a D/B/A: CCT Destination Weddings and CCT Luxury Travel. Each will be designated as a division of Coasters & Castles Travel.
Our Advisors choose the specialties that they want to learn and build their business in. We do expect them to complete the training for these niches before being designated as a specialist in each area.