Travel agent says not to panic amid death at resort


Knoxville, Tenn. (WATE) – After a couple from Maryville were found dead at a Sandals resort in the Bahamas, some people might be wondering if they should take their next big trip, especially to other countries.

According to a local travel agent, now is not the time to cancel your plans or panic.

Lina Shatara has been a travel agent for almost 40 years. She planned getaways, pilgrimages and educational tours and made many trips herself. In fact, she has been on several familiarization trips, or familiarization trips, before the clients.

“Fam trips are designed to equip attendees with adequate product knowledge to sell to customers or publish for media coverage. Travel companies organize familiarization trips to introduce their company and products to people who resell them or cover them in the media. »

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“It’s up to us to go and experience the service, the food, the cleanliness,” Shatara explained. “So that we know what the customer is looking for and find the right complex with the customer.”

After nearly four decades of travel planning, Shatara knows how to ensure not only a fun trip, but also a safe one.

“Research is key,” Shatara said. “Researching what people have said about the resort in great detail and the area itself. I use Trip Advisor quite a bit, which means researching what people have said about the resort in great detail and about the region itself.

Shatara encourages its customers to research their destination location, reviews, nearby places and find out what type of people will be staying there. Also, although Shatara suggests telling someone you trust your travel plans, she strongly urges people not to tell strangers where you are staying.

“Crime can happen anywhere. It exists everywhere. It is up to everyone to exercise common sense and exercise caution.

Lina Shatara

Shatara’s suggestions come at a time when some people may be nervous about traveling after the death of Maryville couple Robbie and Michael Philips. The couple were found dead at a resort in the Bahamas.

Robbie Phillips, left, and Michael Phillips. Photo credit: Phillips family

Despite the tragic discovery, Shatara says now is not the time to panic.

“It doesn’t make me any less comfortable traveling on these trips,” Shatara told WATE. “Whether it’s on Gay Street or whether it’s the Bahamas or whether it’s Paris. It can happen anywhere. »

Below are additional tips from Shatara:

  1. Always buy travel and travel insurance in case of an emergency or unforeseen situation
  2. Know which agencies and organizations to call in an emergency

To know more about Shatara’s services, visit her website. You can also find additional coverage regarding Phillips’ death here.


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