Travel Specialists - AAA Minneapolis

Travel Specialists

Let AAA be your first destination when you’re planning a trip. Whether it’s a family vacation or cruise, a romantic getaway, or a business trip, a AAA Travel Specialist in your neighborhood can get you there in style, with great member savings. You’ll get hotel discounts, discount car rentals, and vacation packages that meet your needs and budget.


Headquarters Office - St. Louis Park


Specialty: Europe, Alaska, ocean and river cruises

Experience: Charlene has traveled so much, it would be easier to list the destinations she has not visited! At last count, she’s visited 66 countries and all 50 states. Charlene loves to cruise and especially enjoys the smaller ships. She has been on 44 voyages all over the world, and recently crossed the Atlantic and the Pacific in the same year. Her new passion, River Cruising, allows her to enjoy traveling the historic waterways of Europe and Asia in style.

Her favorite destinations include mountains and majestic scenery. She especially enjoys hiking and ‘back-road’ trips in Scotland, Wales, Norway and the Alps. She returns often to her favorites, Italy, Turkey, China, Iceland, and Alaska. Charlene loves history and finds herself returning to the great castles and walled cities of Europe. Charlene specializes in international travel and enjoys both helping clients design their own customized itinerary or recommending guided vacations which can best match their travel goals.

Charlene’s advice:
“Book early! The prices are generally better and you can get what you want, rather than what is left over. Also, don’t rush or try to cram too many places into the same trip.  You want to have time to experience a destination not just zip through a list of must-sees.”

e-mail: Charlene


Specialty: United States and Canada Fly/Drive trips, Disney Vacations, Universal Studios, Las Vegas, US National Parks and Mexico.

Experience: Samantha  began her career with AAA in 2010. An essential member of our Auto Travel team, Samantha learned the USA and Canada inside and out, handling accommodations, car rentals and personal road trip planning in all 50 states. As can happen with any passionate travel professional, examining all those maps got her thinking about her own adventures.  In 2017 alone she’s taken an airboat tour of the Florida Everglades, gone spelunking in Mammoth Cave National Park, white water rafting in the Rockies, hiking in Yosemite, snorkeling in Mexico, and kayaking in two of the Great Lakes. Samantha loves immersive travel; she believes her best perspective comes from experiencing a destination as much as seeing it.  As a Travel Counselor, she’s inspiring her clients to live out their travel dreams, too.

Samantha’s advice:
“Start a trip with a tour, even if just for a day. You’ll get the lay of the land and a better appreciation for all you’ll see as you continue your journey.”

e-mail: Samantha


Specialty: Europe tours, cruises including river and expedition cruises and exotic travel to Africa, China and around the world.

Experience: Cynthia has traveled many times to Europe, including, Russia, Baltic Countries, Israel and Egypt. She has also cruised many times to the Caribbean, Panama Canal and Eastern Mediterranean. Cynthia is a Princess Cruise Commodore Specialist, Norwegian Coastal Voyages (Hurtigruten) specialist and Disney College of Knowledge graduate.

Cynthia’s advice:
“Read all you can about the history and culture of where you are visiting. Pack light and enjoy your journey.”

e-mail: Cynthia



Specialty: Disney, Hawaii, Washington, D.C., and Destination Wedding & Honeymoon Specialist.

Experience: Susan has worked for AAA Travel since 2008, and during that time, she has broadened her travel resume´. Susan’s adventures include Tanzania and much of North America, including multiple trips to Hawaii, several Caribbean cruises, a European river cruise, and a cruise tour of Alaska. She’s also experienced with European guided vacations, having visited exciting cities like Paris, Rome, Prague and Venice, and the back roads of Ireland and Scotland.

Susan’s advice:
“Go and see it all. You never know when you are going to get back to your destination, so see as much as you possibly can while you are there.”

Email Susan to request information or schedule an Online Interactive Consultation.



Specialty: Scotland, Ireland, River Cruises, friend getaways, spring breaks, and European guided vacations.

Experience: Dawn began her travel career several years ago, when she worked in Phoenix for an airline. She started out at AAA Minneapolis helping members plan road trips, and is now a full service travel agent who can assist you with your worldwide reservations.  Dawn has traveled to many destinations, but her favorite is the Highlands of Scotland, where she experienced driving on the “other” side of the road. She also recently enjoyed a European River Cruise along the Danube River, and can assist you with advice or questions about booking one for yourself. .

Dawn’s advice:
“Travel light! You probably won’t  wear 6 pair of shoes.  Also: Before you go, read up on customs unique to the country you are visiting, and be respectful of their differences; you’ll be rewarded with a more enriching experience.  Enjoy!”

Email Dawn to request information or schedule an Online Interactive Consultation.



Specialty: River Cruising, Europe, Mexico, Caribbean, Destination Weddings & Honeymoons

Experience: Carri has been with AAA Travel since 2011. She has visited many European countries and most recently traveled to SE Asia: Vietnam, Cambodia and Thailand. She has been to Australia, Mexico, the Caribbean and many destination in the US and Canada including traveling on Rocky Mountaineer through the Canadian Rockies. Her ‘relaxing vacation’ involves a beach in Key West, FL, but she loves river cruising in Europe for the gorgeous cities and their history and SE Asia for the fascinating culture, welcoming people and amazing food!

Carri’s advice:
“Pack light. Be flexible – travel ‘hiccups’ happen all the time. Try new regional cuisine. Don’t cram too much into one trip – take time to ENJOY your destination!”

Email Carri to request information or schedule an Online Interactive Consultation.



My personal travel experience sparked my interest in a travel career, and has been my “specialty” on both the corporate and leisure side of this fascinating industry.  I have traveled extensively to southeastern Europe, the Gulf & Baltic States and the Caucasus region, as well as some of the Caribbean and Central America, and have a genuine affinity for Croatia, Greece and most of the Mediterranean.  I’m confident I can help you sort through an array of guided vacation options offered by our travel partners to these and other regions of the world.

Chris’ advice:
“Travel is a great learning experience, and made all the more satisfying if you take some time prior to travel to educate yourself about your destination.  While on your trip try to immerse yourself in the culture; in the long run you will get far more out of your experiences.” “

Email Chris to request information or schedule an Online Interactive Consultation.


Starr – Manager

Starr has been in the travel industry since 1997.  She specializes in very detailed itineraries of Europe as well as independent and guided trips to exotic destinations like South America,  Africa and Southeast Asia.  Starr’s clients have hiked the Inca Trail, rafted  in South Africa, climbed Kilimanjaro, and zip-lined in New Zealand.  She is an expert at handling the out-of-the–ordinary, so if visiting the Mt. Everest Base Camp, trekking to see Gorillas in Rwanda, cruising the Galapagos, or embarking on a safari peaks your interest, contact Starr.  If it’s on your bucket list she can help you check it off!

Starr’s advice:
“Don’t sweat the small stuff. Take time to “get lost” in your destination.  Meet the locals and immerse yourself in the culture.”

Email Starr to request information or schedule an Online Interactive Consultation.

Downtown Minneapolis

Catherine – Manager

Experience: Catherine has been with AAA Travel since February of 2007. She has traveled extensively within the United States as well as to the Riviera Maya, the Caribbean and Europe. She has numerous certifications from AAA preferred suppliers and enjoys helping people plan their perfect getaway.

Specialty: Riviera Maya and the Caribbean, the East Coast including New York City and Boston as well as European cities like London and Paris. Catherine enjoys relaxing on the beaches of Mexico just as much as visiting the museums in Chicago. She believes that travel will open up doors to experiences to learn about different people and places as well as learning about yourself.

Catherine’s advice:
Value is different than price and the cheapest price does not mean the best value. People who pay for value rarely return dissatisfied.

Email Catherine to request information or schedule an Online Interactive Consultation.


Experience: Let your curiosity take over and I’ll be your guide! Being a recent graduate from the Travel Academy, I’ve expanded my knowledge on the world of travel. I enjoy planning new and exciting destinations for my clients and working for AAA gives me an unlimited amount of resources to plan that perfect trip! Whether you are looking for a new cultural experience or a relaxing trip with the family, I will work with you and conduct the research to find that dream vacation.

Morgan’s advice:
To quote Bill Bryson, “To my mind, the greatest reward and luxury of travel is to be able to experience everyday things as if it for the first time, to be in a position in which almost nothing is so familiar, it is taken for granted”.

e-mail: Morgan


Experience:  After graduating from the Minneapolis Business College in Travel and Hospitality, Maggie found a home here at AAA Minneapolis. She settled in as a go-to professional in our Group Travel department and has recently moved to our Downtown branch office in a new position as a personal Travel Counselor. She has a strong passion for travel and loves helping her clients have the most fun and enriching experiences possible. Maggie’s personal travel experience includes recent journeys to Italy, France, Germany, Switzerland and Ireland.

Specialty:   Maggie loves working directly with clients and assisting with the research involved with bringing travel dreams to life.

Advice: “Twenty years from now, you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the things you did do.” –Mark Twain

Email Maggie to request information or schedule an Online Interactive Consultation.

Eden Prairie

Susan – Manager

Making memories is a part of my job description, so whether it’s a girlfriend weekend, a romantic getaway, Destination Wedding/Honeymoon or that long hoped-for Europe vacation, I love to help make those travel dreams into memorable vacations of a lifetime.

Specialty: Europe, River Cruises, Luxury Travel, Romance/Destination Weddings, Honeymoons and Adventure Travel. I genuinely care about my clients, and strive to be their go-to Travel Concierge. And since I personally love to “road-trip,” working at AAA lets me enjoy/work with all aspects of my client’s travel adventures.

Specialist Training: Luxury Specialist, Destination Wedding Specialist, River Cruise Specialist and the Princess Commodore Academy.  Extensive destination/resort specialist credentials.

Destinations traveled:  Nearly all 50 states by car, Hawaii, Costa Rica, Mexico, Europe and the Middle East.  Cruises: Mediterranean, Caribbean and Alaska.

Susan’s advice:
“Travel enlarges your world and your life. So go!’

Email Susan to request information or schedule an Online Interactive Consultation.


Experience: Travel has been a part of my life since I was born. My family is from Europe and I have traveled there to visit family since I was a baby. When I finished college the only job I considered was a travel agent! I love getting to know every client and their preferences. Nothing makes me happier than to hear how much they’ve enjoyed their trip when they return.

Destinations Traveled: Kenya, Costa Rica, Europe, Japan, China, Vietnam, New Zealand, Mexico, Caribbean, Canada, Hawaii, India, Alaska

Specialty: Africa, Costa Rica, Vietnam, China, Canada, Hawaii, Mexico, ski, Europe, Croatia, the Middle East, New Zealand, Australia, Fiji, Tahiti, and Eastern India. I also specialize in groups, escorted tours, cruises, and all foreign independent travel.

Advice:Let me do the work for you!

Email Susan to request information.



Specialty:   Beach destinations, Cruising, Disney World/Disney Cruise Line, Universal Orlando, Alaska,  Spring break and family getaways, multi-generational travel, anniversary and honeymoons,  European Guided Vacations and River cruises.

Boating and going to the beach are two of Kristi’s favorite pastimes, so it’s no surprise she loves cruising and visiting Mexico and the Caribbean. She says of her western Caribbean Disney Cruise: “It was absolutely amazing: The ship, activities, service, staff, food, plus Disney’s private island…it’s magical!” She also cherishes her experiences in Europe, and among her favorite countries is Italy.  “It’s wonderful.  The historic sights and culture are fabulous.”   A river cruise specialist, Kristi recently traveled on AMA Waterways along the Danube, and plans to return this fall to France, Burgundy and the Provence with Uniworld River Cruises.

Kristi’s advice:
“No matter what happens always make the best of things and have fun!”

Email Kristi to request information or schedule an Online Interactive Consultation.



Carol – Manager

Specialty and Travel Experience: In the past few years, Carol has visited Puerto Vallarta and Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, and sailed on the Royal Caribbean’s brand-new Quantum of the Seas.  She has also recently visited Las Vegas, Universal Studios, Disney World in Florida and Disneyland in California.  She loves cruising – and all Caribbean destinations – for the blue water and white sand, and Las Vegas for the excitement and great food.

Carol’s advice:
“Relax! Things go wrong and things go right. It’s all part of traveling.”

Email Carol to request information or schedule an Online Interactive Consultation.



Specialty: Cruising, Disney, and Europe

Debbie sees travel as more than just getting on a plane an going somewhere. She truly sees it as an adventure. She says, “I love to travel anywhere. I am excited to meet new people, see new places, and observe how other people live.” Her most recent trips have been to Eastern Europe, Mexico, Florida, Bermuda, and the Caribbean. Debbie is also a Carnival cruise specialist.

Debbie’s advice:
“Enjoy the differences of where you are traveling to and appreciate others.”

Email Debbie to request information or schedule an Online Interactive Consultation.



Specialty: Domestic US, Mexico, especially the Riviera Maya, and Europe.

Experience: Dan is new to AAA but hardly new to the travel Industry.  A Tour Director for over 20 years, Dan has traveled extensively hosting groups in the USA, Europe, Mexico and the Caribbean.  Dan has wonderful stories from his adventures, including some of his favorites:  a private tour of the Vatican’s Sistine Chapel in Rome, a Rhine River cruise from Amsterdam, the Netherlands  to Strasbourg, France, and a luxury cruise between Copenhagen, Denmark and London, England.  He understands what makes a vacation memorable, and is eager to share his planning expertise with his new clients.

Dan’s Advice: Don’t hold back-see the world and what it has to offer!

Email Dan to request information.

Maple Grove

Kate – Manager

Specialty:  European Guided Vacations and River Cruises, All-Inclusive Vacations for Families and Adults-Only.

Kate has traveled extensively throughout the continents of Europe and North America, as well as Asia, Africa and South America. Her most recent trips have included Europe River cruising, Italy, and Costa Rica.  She feels that River Cruising is the ultimate way to see Europe – cruising the waterways slowly on intimate small boats with 5-star food and service.   She loves traveling to Mexico because the people are gracious and the history is fascinating – plus you can’t beat the sunny, white sand beaches.  If you’re thinking of a trip south of the equator, Kate says that New Zealand is wonderful. “The country is beautiful and clean, the people are friendly and love Americans.”

Kate’s advice:
“I highly recommend purchasing travel insurance to protect your vacation in case of unexpected emergencies. Having peace of mind is priceless!”

Email Kate to request information or schedule an Online Interactive Consultation.



Experience:  I have been dedicated to providing comprehensive travel services to AAA customers for more than 16 years and I would love to help you plan your next adventure.  Hailing from Australia, “Down Under” is closest to my heart!


I have completed many destination and travel partner specialist programs, but have firsthand travel experience in Europe, China, Mexico and Australia.  I am especially fond of river cruising in Europe, and recently became certified with Uniworld River Cruises and AMA Waterways. Lucky for me, part of becoming an expert means experiencing it myself.  I love the practically-everything-is-included value, and only unpacking once.  It’s a wonderful way to experience the small towns and villages as well as the imperial cities of Europe.

Xanthe’s advice:
“Take advantage of an escorted tour. It’s a great value, and you can travel relaxed and hassle free, knowing that all the details are taken care of for you.”

Email Xanthe to request information or schedule an Online Interactive Consultation.4



Experience: The Travel Business is an exciting industry, and AAA is a great place to start a career.  I thrive on learning about fascinating travel destinations and work hard to develop expertise in key hot spots around the globe. Family cruises and all-inclusive vacations are best planned by a specialist.  As an adventure lover, I’m excited about promoting warm weather destinations such as Mexico and the Caribbean, and the exhilarating activities that make them memorable. If you’re interested in activities like zip lining, white water rafting, snorkeling and diving, I want to help you find your dream vacation!

Specialty: As AAA agents, one of the first things we learn to excel at is Hertz Car rentals and hotels to anywhere in the world.  I can help you sort through options with speed and efficiency.  I also have a special affinity for vacation planning in Mexico’s Riviera Maya near Cancun in the Yucatan Peninsula.

Morgan’s advice:
“Always renew your passport one year before it expires, always have an open mind when you travel, and never be afraid to try something new!”

Email Morgan to request information or schedule an Online Interactive Consultation.

Minnetonka/Ridge Square

Sherri – Manager

Specialty and Travel Experience: Honeymoons and Destination Weddings Specialist.  I have traveled to Aruba, Jamaica, Bahamas, Grand Cayman, Mexico, Italy, Belgium, Ireland, Canada, Alaska, Hawaii, Disney, and many US States.  I have also cruised in Alaska, Caribbean, and Canada/New England.

Sherri’s advice:
“Travel is one of the best ways to spend quality time with your family. Use the time as an opportunity to step outside the box and try new things.”

Email Sherri to request information or schedule an Online Interactive Consultation.



Specialty: Hawaii, Europe, Washington D.C. and Eastern Mexico are some of the destinations Ellen lists as her favorites. Europe and Washington D.C. for their rich history, Hawaii and Mexico for the beautiful beaches, relaxed atmosphere and fun things to do.

Ellen’s advice:
“Be an open-minded traveler. Not many things in life are guaranteed and this is especially true when it comes to traveling. There are so many situations that can alter your travel plans; weather, mechanical problems, road conditions, illness, etc. You have to be open to the fact that these things happen and try to make the best of it rather than letting it ruin your vacation.”

e-mail: Ellen



Experience: After receiving a Bachelor’s degree in Travel and Tourism from St. Cloud State University, Sarah looked for the best opportunity to apply her knowledge and skills, and she found it here at AAA Minneapolis as a Travel Counselor.  Utilizing our specialized training programs and the world’s best cruise and tour partners, she’s able to help clients plan and customize their perfect trip with ease and efficiency.

Specialty: Sarah loves researching and comparing different travel options for clients. She is able to help them explore their travel options while providing personalized added value:  her expertise in choosing what will fit best for them.   Need assistance with finding the right car, air, or hotel for your travel needs?  She’d love to help.

Sarah’s Advice:
If traveling is your passion, let us help you make it happen. Life is well spent when you travel!