Fort Lauderdale, Fla. (December 1, 2021) – The number one travel agency franchise for veterans, Dream Vacations, recently awarded five military veterans with free travel franchises as part of its 10th annual award-winning annual business plan contest “Operation Vetrepreneur: Become Your Own General.” To celebrate the milestone, one military veteran also won a berth at the Dream Vacations 2022 River Cruise Summit aboard the AmaMagna. Currently more than 35 percent of franchise owners within Dream Vacations are military veterans and in the past decade, the travel agency franchise has awarded 56 free franchises valued at nearly $700,000 to deserving military veterans.
“Military veterans and their families have sacrificed so much so we can live the American Dream, and we are privileged to be able to support them in their business ownership dreams,” said Drew Daly, senior vice president and general manager of Dream Vacations. “Every year I am impressed by the caliber of candidates and this year was no exception. I am excited to see what this year’s recruits will accomplish with the resurgence of the travel industry.”
The Dream Vacations franchise contest was open to former members of any of the five branches of the U.S. military (Army, Air Force, Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard) who are retired, off active duty and/or honorably discharged prior to the contest start date this past May and are residents of the U.S. Candidates participated in a rigorous three-part application process which included creating a business plan, video essay and phone interviews. Nearly 3,200 people have applied for franchise ownership through Operation Vetrepreneur since 2012.
To celebrate the milestone, one military veteran also won the grand prize of a berth at the Dream Vacations 2022 River Cruise Summit aboard the AmaMagna. This year’s winners are Army and Air Force Veteran Anthony Cinquini of Glendale, Ariz.; Army Veteran Renault Ellis, who also won the berth on the River Cruise; Air Force Veteran Derek Sampson of Madison, Ala.; Air Force Veteran James Steele of Mandeville, La.; and Army and Marine Corps Veteran Jeff Williams of Troy Ill.
“My military service instilled qualities in me that shaped my business mindset and goals today,” said Vetrepreneur winner Sampson. “These qualities, along with my core values and determination, are essential to my success as a franchise owner. The travel industry fascinates me. I had a strong desire to see the world when I joined the Air Force. Although I never visited the top locations on my bucket list, I did experience cultures I never imagined seeing. These experiences only intensified my passion for travel. I want to help others experience the joy and excitement of traveling.”
All military veterans who purchase a Dream Vacations travel agency business receive a 30 percent discount off the initial franchisee fee. Veterans also receive an enlistment package valued at more than $5,000, which includes waived administrative fees valued at $1,350. In addition to having access to the Command Center, an internal portal with veteran-specific training and veteran-themed marketing assets, all veterans and Gold Star families receive a waived training fee for a business partner and the ability to hire active-duty military spouses and veterans as associates at a discount. Additional veteran incentives include the ability to move residences and stay in business, travel discounts for military customers and access to veteran networking groups.
As the only travel franchise to receive a 5 STAR ranking from VetFran, Dream Vacations proudly supports military veterans and is consistently recognized by leading industry publications as a veteran-friendly franchise. It was ranked the #1 franchise for veterans by Entrepreneur magazine in 2021, and other recent number one rankings include Military Times and Forbes. Additional recognitions include inclusion on G.I. Jobs annual “Hot Franchises for Veterans,” US Veterans magazine’s “Top Veteran-Friendly Companies”, USA Today’s “50 Top Franchises for Military Veterans” and recognition by MSC Cruises in its Seaside Salute Award. The Operation Vetrepreneur program won gold from the Travel Weekly Magellan Awards and the IFA Franchising Gives Back Awards.
Dream Vacations is committed to being “Rich in Diversity” and empowers all owners, franchisees and employees to reach their highest potential by leveraging their broad range of talent, experiences, personalities, viewpoints and ideas to generate business growth.
Military veterans and community heroes who are passionate about travel with an entrepreneurial spirit who would like to be part of a travel agency network that cares more about its agents, travelers and military veterans, should visit www.DreamVacationsFranchise.com or call 888-249-8235 to learn about franchising with Dream Vacations.
About Dream Vacations
Travel agents with the top-ranked home-based travel agency franchise Dream Vacations have the resources to plan and create seamless vacation experiences for their customers while offering the best value. A member of the International Franchise Association, Dream Vacations is part of World Travel Holdings and has received partner of the year, a top-ranking status, by all the major cruise lines as well as national recognition for its support of military veterans. For more information about Dream Vacations, visit www.DreamVacationsFranchise.com. Like Dream Vacations on Facebook at www.facebook.com/DreamVacationsFranchise, follow on Twitter at @Dream_Franchise and watch its videos at http://www.youtube.com/DreamVacationsBusiness.