A spirit of adventure brought love and success to this young couple. It’s the story of how two free spirits shared their zeal and made money doing it.
Ashton Palmer and Kristy Royce first met at a youth hostel in Australia. Didn’t take long to find out that they had a lot in common. Things like working in jungle camps, snowmobiling in Antarctica, exploring the Amazon – and other places that your Triple A auto club doesn’t serve.
Palmer spent more than a decade as an expedition leader, naturalist, and operations staff. He’d made more than 50 trips to the South Pole, and navigated more than 40,000 miles on the Amazon River.
It was a perfect match. Palmer and Royce joined forces and got married.
Between them, they had no business experience or business background. But that was OK – after all they were risk takers. So they borrowed some money and opened a new business — a travel agency.
Not just any travel agency of course.
They wanted to attract like-minded people who wanted unique and remarkable expeditions to exotic destinations. In 1999 they opened their doors as Expedition Trips in Seattle.
Well, it quickly became obvious there were a lot of people like them. People who wanted to take private safaris, swim with Beluga Whales and other kinds of “experiential travel.” Travel that’s taken the firm to Antarctica, for example, more than 100 times. In fact, in 2011, Travel + Leisure’s “40 Trips of a Lifetime” issue named Expedition Trips “The Antarctica Experts.”
The Adventure Travel Trade Association describes the Expedition Trips website “as a one-stop portal to more than 350 life-changing travel experiences throughout the world.”
Obviously they found a niche: because within five years, the couple had projected sales of $6 million!
Ashton Palmer and Kristy Royce exemplify one of the axioms on our website: Pursue your passion. The things you do for love can lead to a profitable future.
Expedition Trips: Unique expeditions for the audacious traveler. Now Why Didn’t I Think of That?