November/December 2023 Travel
T w o P e a c o c k s T r a v e l
Ana Maria Gaona & Sandy Correa
Travel for Women, by Women, with Women
What inspired you to start Two Peacocks Travel?
We are proud first-generation Latinas and daughters of immigrants who embarked on a journey from public service to founding "Two Peacocks Travel". We're a dynamic duo of travel enthusiasts with different backgrounds, education, and careers, joined by our love for making a positive impact. It all began about 9 years ago with a funny travel story about someone trying to board an airplane with a peacock as an emotional support animal. We referred to each other as peacocks in our former careers and as we transitioned out, it became the inspiration for our business name last year.
Our travel-preneur journey began in August 2022 with a focus on international student programs and special curated adventures for women, promoting a slower, more meaningful approach to exploration. Driven by watching our own high school students complete their last two years of high school remotely and not having the normal “junior and senior” activities, we knew there were other parents out there with the same dilemma, so we created an international cultural immersion program. The idea of sending our kids to Cordoba, Spain for a 2 week experience gained traction quickly and before we knew it, it became a 6 week experience and a party of 5, including our friend’s daughter who joined us. In retrospect, this was our “pilot” program.
Soon after, our initiative expanded to include friends seeking hassle-free travel experiences, leading us to organize our first group trip in early 2023. Since then, we've achieved significant milestones, successfully running two student programs and organizing five group trips across 12 countries within a year. Our commitment is fueled by passion, empowering students and women to fearlessly explore the world while infusing every trip with empathy, expertise, and a mission to break barriers in global exploration.
Today, our focus extends beyond individual adventures. We now provide behind the-scenes event support and logistics for hosts running destination retreats, responding to the evolving needs of the travel industry. As we continue to expand our horizons, our dedication remains unwavering, and our mission persists: to make a lasting difference for our valued clients, one enriching travel experience at a time.
What does the name Two Peacocks Travel represent?
Two Peacocks Travel symbolizes not just an adventure, but a movement inspiring women to break barriers. Through support, guidance, and shared experiences, we kindle the flames of wanderlust, making the world accessible and inviting for all.
"Two Peacocks Travel symbolizes not just an adventure, but a movement inspiring women to break barriers. Through support, guidance, and shared experiences, we kindle the flames of wanderlust, making the world accessible and inviting for all".
Ana and Sandy when did you two first meet?
We met in Fall 2014.
How did you both know that you wanted to become business partners and embark on this travel journey together?
Our former professional experiences brought us together in collaborating and providing solutions for some of the toughest challenges in a hospital setting. This was the foundation of our relationship. We started out as colleagues, soon became friends, and now have a business partnership.
Tell us more about the different travel services and packages that you offer.
Our 2024 calendar is filled with fun adventures, new experiences, tasting delicious food, making new friends, and venturing out to amazing places! To kick off the year, we are offering a 6- day Morocco group trip in February, 5-day Cuba trip in March, 5-days in Spain for the May festival, the student program in July, Oaxaca in November for Day of the Dead, and many others to be announced. There’s a travel adventure for everyone. We make it easy by taking the hassle out of the planning, so our travelers just show up and enjoy the experience of a transformational journey. Plus we offer a payment plan too!
Can you list your top 3 countries you traveled to?
Are there any memorable food dishes that you wish you could eat right now?
Mushel-Octopus in Croatia
Gelato in Piza, Italy
Cheese and chocolate fondue in Switzerland
Are there any challenges you've had to overcome as CEOs?
Absolutely, but challenges always have a solution and it's an opportunity to take that next step to grow. These are some of the challenges we faced:
Overcoming imposter syndrome
Balancing multiple roles
Navigating business scaling
Dealing with financial pressures
Avoiding decision fatigue
Operating in the shadow of our past
Establishing the right pace
Can you provide our readers with a daily tip on how to navigate different cultures when traveling?
This is a great and thoughtful question. These are some of our regular practices:
Research ahead of time (traditions, laws, culture, language, etc) and learn some basic phrases
Taste local dishes and engage with locals
Travel responsibly and leave no trace
Above all and important to keep in mind: be patient, flexible and adaptable
What are some words of advice that you can give to future CEOs who want to start a travel company?
Don't let the opinions of others get in the way of your journey. Focus your attention on the people who support you, celebrate your wins, and cheer you on as you keep pressing forward.
"Don't let the opinions of others get in the way of your journey. Focus your attention on the people who support you, celebrate your wins, and cheer you on as you keep pressing forward".
Outside of your business, what are some other hobbies that you enjoy?
Since we already get to travel, we enjoy taking in the cities we visit. We always stop for some local coffee, visit museums, learn about traditions, traditional foods, and history, but at the heart of our conversations we look for ways we can give back. We both have a passion for giving back to communities in different ways, which to no surprise is how we have a pending 501c3, WanderBridge, to share travels with under-resourced students.
Photographer (Cuba Trip): Christina Russo