Name: Bui Ngoc Linh
Position title: Managing Director
Company name: Sens Asia Travel
When and why did you join the industry?
I joined the travel industry in 2005 after a few years working around Asia. I found my passion on the road and I want to promote this continent to the world. So I sent my CV to tourism companies and went to interviews – and I have never looked back.
What do you like most about your job?
I love researching destinations, traveling, planning, coming up with new and creative ideas – new and exciting ways to explore destination – all this is great. But nothing beats working with people. I have met so many wonderful people over the last 12 years – locals, tour guides, suppliers, customers – they create the soul of travel for me. They are the ones who make each destination come alive.
What’s one of the biggest achievements of your career so far?
Founding Sens Asia Travel last year is without a doubt the biggest milestone of my career so far. I have grown in the job. It feels such a natural fit. I feel great everyday coming to work and have a fun and very full day with my team.
What’s the best advice ever given to you and who gave it?
“Think big in business and be true to yourself”. It’s not direct advice but thoughts shared with me by our company CEO Tran Thanh Nam. He always gives me great motivation to look out, look forward, be myself and think big!
Who do you admire and see as a role model in the industry?
I don’t really admire a specific person as a role model but I do appreciate and look up to a few outstanding leaders I have met in and outside the industry from which I have been able to create my own ways and guidelines to succeed.
What can people expect from your company and what sets it apart from the rest?
We try to reawaken people’s curiosity in travel – through personal service and travel experiences using local people and families. It is through their eyes that we can often open our own eyes more – to their lives and the world around us. Our senses can sometimes be dulled by the heavy responsibilities of life and we don’t always look up and look out. In a way, Sens Asia is like a personal journey planner providing seamless arrangements and attentive service. We are a deeply passionate team, honestly and carefully taking care of our guests with heartfelt enthusiasm and energy. We think this sets us apart.
What destinations are on your travel bucket list?
There are so many. But an Indonesia road trip, India to Ladakh, Sri Lanka, and New Zealand are all right up there on my list of musts!
What’s a memorable travel experience you’ve had (good or bad)?
The flight from Jomsom to Pokhara, Nepal in 2015. It’s neither good nor bad. But a short flight in a small aircraft with a cracked window lasting just eighteen minutes gave me an incredible sense of perspective as I reflected on my life, experiences and thoughts about the future. I can still remember my eighteen minutes as though it was yesterday.
What are three things you always take with you when travelling?
A notebook, my camera and good pair of walking shoes.
Name someone famous you’d like to travel with and a destination you’d like to go with them.
I would love to travel with Mark Zuckerberg to Myanmar. He is a great inspirational, young, passionate and active person who read a lot, jog a lot, brings insight, revelation and in some ways revolution to the world. I think the trip would be great fun.
What direction do you see the industry heading in over the next five to ten years?
I think more people will go on long haul trips. Technology will increasingly take over a lot of things. Connections are everywhere and tourism industry will flatten out and go completely online. I think tailor made journeys with personal service will growth strongly in the comfy and luxury segments. The human touch will always be vital. The future of tourism is positive for both travellers and service providers.