We had the good fortune of connecting with Shana O’Mara and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Shana, is there something that you feel is most responsible for your success?
I left corporate America in 2014 and was in network marketing. It wasn’t a great fit for me but I knew I didn’t want to return to an office. A little over a year later, a good friend (and my now business partner) suggested I look into travel after I found her a great deal on a flight. I’ve always loved helping friends find deals and the idea stuck! I started to look into ideas, and on January 1, 2016, I launched The Pixie Planner with a Facebook page and website. When I first launched, we had little more than word of mouth to get started. That word of mouth (and 4 years worth of 5 star reviews) has lead to a brand that people love and trust. Our guests become our friends and our social media followers are like family. We are proud to say that we continue to grow holistically- with our guests being our biggest driver. We are on track for our second million dollar year- all from word of mouth!
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
I started The Pixie Planner to help save people money- while still taking care of all of the details. We started with a focus on Disneyland and I used my personal knowledge of the park. I have been going to Disneyland since I was an infant, and am an Annual Passholder. I love knowing all of the ways to save time and money and I passed that on to my guests. Over the years, we have expanded our offerings and now love to offer savings and service on trips to the Caribbean, Hawaii and more. Like all travel agencies, we were hit hard by Covid-19. Throughout it all though, we have continued to offer the best service. We are proud to say we have helped get all of our customers taken care of, minimizing the impact as much as possible. Not one customer has had to sit on hold or worry, as we have taken care of all of the details. In many cases, we were also able to give them upgrades when they rebooked. We are excited to see the world slowly open back up and we will be here when people are ready to travel.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I would love to show my friend some great staycation options in the Phoenix area. I love Wild Horse Pass, the Pointe resorts, and The Buttes. One of my favorite spots is visiting the Aridus Tasting Room in Scottsdale, to experience Arizona grown wine. For food, I love House of Tricks in Tempe and Citizen Public House in Old Town Scottsdale. In the East Valley, we would go out to sushi and martinis at Blue Wasabi.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My business partner and best friend Misty Pollina is my rock. She was the person who suggested I move into the travel world. She came in as my business partner in year 3 and she balances me. I am the dreamer and she is the do-er. I am Alice going down the Rabbit Hole and she is there when I come back out, ready to help my vision become a reality.