Kensington Tours Reviews

Updated Jul 27, 2020

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3.2
55%
Recommend to a Friend
Pros
  • "Yearly FAM trips (if you are meeting performance requirements, of course)(in 11 reviews)

  • "Flexibility to work from home after certain tenure(in 10 reviews)

Cons
  • "Resourcing is limited relative to the growth of the business so work life balance can be a bit of a challenge(in 10 reviews)

  • "You'll notice no one from the company calls African countries by their names; they just say Africa(in 9 reviews)

More Pros and Cons
  1. Helpful (1)

    "Great Company"

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Destination Expert in Toronto, ON
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I have been working at Kensington Tours full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    - A diverse, kind and passionate group of people. - Good commissions -Great Culture - Work from home -Fam Trips -Constant training -Monthly lunches -Social responsibility -Clear communication and strong leadership

    Cons

    -high targets -lots of meetings during your week

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  2. "Innovative Luxury Travel Company"

    4.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Destination Expert in Toronto, ON
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

    I have been working at Kensington Tours full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Work from home, company lunches, catered parties, FAM travel, benefits, RRSP match

    Cons

    Some questionable practices when trips go wrong and your commission is effected


  3. Helpful (3)

    "Outdated Mickey Mouse operation that doesn't care about you"

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I have been working at Kensington Tours full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    close to the Eaton Centre

    Cons

    They hire employees with the intention of laying them off in a few months. It is the most unstable environment I've ever worked at. You're replaceable here and they don't care one bit about you no matter how long you work there. If you're junior & want to gain experience until you find something better, great, but never stop looking. All of the positive reviews here are written by HR or leadership. There's no travel perks outside of sales department. The culture is full of favoritism and backstabbing. No matter what they decide to change their name to, Kensington Tours, Traveledge, Travelify, it will always be the same company & culture.

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  4. Helpful (1)

    "Great Place"

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Toronto, ON
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I worked at Kensington Tours full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Awesome people to work with

    Cons

    Best place to work period!

  5. Helpful (2)

    "Great culture"

    4.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Support in Toronto, ON
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I have been working at Kensington Tours full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Amazing culture, hardworking team and great leadership

    Cons

    Support team salaries are low, less room for growth

  6. Helpful (8)

    "Unhealthy, Unethical & Outdated Workplace"

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Destination Expert in Toronto, ON
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I worked at Kensington Tours full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    - Standard workplace Pros: after 3 months of working, receive benefits - Familiarization tours (but only after you make 800K for the company AFTER 1 year of working there)

    Cons

    <b>CEO/Owner </b>: Let's start here. The CEO has an infatuation with Africa because he grew up there. You'll notice no one from the company calls African countries by their names; they just say Africa. You see this weird obsession and exploitation of the continent through their fixation on selling Safaris only and the images on the wall of them around tribal groups. They have no problem bragging about the Millions he makes a year off the backs of his poorly paid DE's. He thinks his remarks and profit is justifiable because he donates a large portion to charity. Dumping money and actively getting involved to make a change are two different things. They also says things like "Tech is just a [bad word] term used to receive funding from investors." He has confirmed he has no desire to enhance his product within the luxury travel space, which is a clear reflection of how stagnant the platform is. <b>Hire Process/Training</b>: The hiring process is long for a place that doesn't value its staff in the slightest. It's incredibly polarizing how they try to persuade you throughout the entire process of how great the working environment is, only for you to experience the opposite. No one is your "family" there. In your first group orientation to get to know the company, you do a True Colours test, a test that categorizes you and staff into personality types. Everyone is mandatory to have this near their desks, indicating their colour. The issue with this, is people are entirely too complex to box them into 4 colours of personalities. Once you're hired you will spend/waste 2 weeks in a room learning about the company. By the third week, the real work is provided suddenly, and you have to figure it out. The learning and Development team teaches you one way (as if you're selling Europe) and the minute you enter the floor the staff shows you a completely different way of learning. They will tell you to disregard EVERYTHING from training. <b>SALES!!!!</b>: The wrongest thing about this company is that it encourages staff to adjust prices so that they can make more money. You are told to add as much money as you can to a quote so you can make more commission. You are able to offer a gift to travelers like a bottle of champagne and charge them for that, which is hidden in their itinerary quote. If a customer wants to book their own hotels, they tell you to still charge them close to the hotel expense so there's no drop in the itinerary price. They've gotten the mathematics to do this crookery down to a science. It's taught to you in training. Other Sales Leads will make comments about slapping an extra 1000USD on a trip out of spite for their travelers "being cheap". They call their 90K clients "idiots" for spending so much on a trip. If you don't believe in what you're selling what does that say about you and the company you work for? <b>Team Members/Mentors</b>: Your team members do not want you there. The competitive work environments stem from being in a queue to capture leads on a trip. The more people, the fewer leads. If you're selling the same destination as another person, they have no problem in showing you their disdain for this. Team members discuss in front of you how upset they are for new hires and will not help you unless given directive from Sales Directors. Mentors are pitched to be the person you go to for guidance and who take you on coffee dates. That does not happen, and you'll notice that your "mentor" is often switched around because no one wants to help you. In a very specific incident, KT staff submitted anonymously to a town hall board how new hires are affecting their livelihood. Imagine being a new hire and reading this. This is a reflection of the hostile environment. Not to mention, there are new hires every other month because the revolving door on how many people quit but don't care to write a review like mine. <b>Product/Marketing/ TMT</b>: The platform used to sell trips is dated like really dated. For the CEO to have such a "love and passion for Africa," it is quite sad how far behind they are with what is happening in different African countries. Their main point of sales is encouraging their American demographic to spend 90K + on seeing Lions, Hippos, & Gorillas. Africa has way more to offer than animals. The "Experts" know nothing about West Africa, so it's embarrassing to overhear them try to sell it. They sell trends like Ghana's "Year of Return (2019)" after the fact and think misleading their consumers to make a sale is okay. Fun cultural activities it is not built in the system. I've yet to uncover the actual role of the Product team besides gatekeeping. The Product Team requires you to develop your tours, activities and submit it to them for approval. Not a single update to tours have been done. There are folders all over the place consisting of the information of countries. Everyone's folders and documents are different. The level of disorganization is baffling. Two people can sell Italy entirely differently depending on if they used google or yahoo for research. The product team does not provide you with the correct resources for each destination. You're told that everything is custom, but you're forced to sell an itinerary built from 2008. An example of a weird tour activity is to have a tribe in Kenya dance for you like puppets. The marketing team is a waste of the CEO's millions they sit on. They discovered how to make Instagram ads in 2020... they operate on lead generation only and stick within catering to Americans 55yrs+ this is because <b>CEO will tell you he has zero interest in catering to Millennials in the future, but he is open to acquiring their tech-driven platforms under his Travel Edge umbrella company </b>.

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  7. Helpful (6)

    "A Bad Time to Join"

    2.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Destination Expert in Toronto, ON
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    I have been working at Kensington Tours full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    - Employees are unique, talented individuals - Casual work environment - Work from home perks - FAM trips once a year - Occasional free lunches, drinks

    Cons

    - Employees are hired for their talents and unique personalities but are not given opportunities to showcase those abilities - "Expert" is a vague term now. Some people sell regions they've never visited to meet their sales targets - The commission scale is sliding despite the company constantly bragging about growth. We don't see that money in our pockets. In fact, we see much less than we used to - Everyone in leadership seems to either be an olympic Kool-Aid drinker or is totally fatigued and fed up with their role. There is no balance - The company's desire for growth directly counters their identity as a custom, luxury travel company. The clients no longer get their money's worth - The sales team is constantly blamed/under scrutiny when numbers fluctuate, despite the company toying with their mark-up and marketing to many people who are unaware of/unable to afford Kensington Tours' mission and associated pricing

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  8. Helpful (7)

    "not for intermediate, senior creatives"

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Copywriter 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I worked at Kensington Tours full-time

    Pros

    The employees (outside of leadership) are good, talented, and strong people who really want to contribute to the business, and are motivated to create good work. In theory, the brand/business itself would be exciting to work for, and contribute to, if leadership had a vision and goals for the brand, and subsequently their staff.

    Cons

    There is no opportunity here, and if you're senior-level and looking to make contributions to the brand and the business, it won't happen here. My role was positioned as a senior role, one where I would be providing a POV on content + copy for the marketing department, and one where I had autonomy and opportunity to be a decision-maker and lead the strategy of copy moving forward - it never happened. Every project I was assigned was either killed, or farmed out to a third-party agency. Every line of copy I wrote was rewritten. I never wrote anything that didn’t go through a considerable, unnecessary number of people – all from varying departments outside of marketing - for review/changes/iterations, and every person who reviewed my work rewrote the copy to the point I just began executing everyone else’s copy demands and ideas. Nothing I wrote actually “stuck” or got approved – and that was the circle. My workload was junior, and I went days and weeks where I had nothing to do or contribute: I’d write a couple of lines of copy for digital or social, but there was no actual business plan for how we were going to move forward in the marketing department: There was no campaigns, no original copy projects, no channels: all print, OOH, and television initiatives (et al) were assigned to third-party agencies, not in-house. A copywriter is meant to contribute to multiple aspects of the company's marketing mix, but that was the issue - there is no marketing mix. There was no marketing business plan - from the CMO or anyone in a leadership position - and when the department creatives would ask leadership for some perspective on what we were doing, or where we were going, they couldn't answer it. They didn't know themselves. The leadership micro-manages to the point any existing projects never fully get off the ground because they can't find unison in their decisions, so no decisions are ultimately made. Every deadline the department was assigned was missed - and that was standard practise. We never met a deadline because they were so loose to begin with. Projects just evaporated. We never fully realized a number of project initiatives; they just disappeared into the ether. There is no leadership: In my time, a number of leaders were either demoted or fired, and there was no replacement. The creative department never had a CD, so we lacked structure and vision, and ultimately any sense of support or mentorship. The department doesn’t have anyone to advocate for the work, nor provide a strategy on where the department should go. Leadership is, at times, shockingly candid about how dysfunctional and lackadaisical the business is, to the point you wonder why you were hired in such an environment to begin with, and because of that, the level of gossip in the department is overwhelming and it lacks considerable professionalism and decorum. You won’t be promoted: There is no opportunity for growth, despite how much they may promise you in your interview. No one gets promoted or moves up the ranks. If you’re a junior, you won’t move up; if you’re a senior, you won’t have a future. Because there are no meaty projects or campaigns to work on, you have nothing to contribute to your portfolio. It's not an environment that will boost your career or make you a stronger creative; it has the reverse affect. It got to the point where I was too concerned about jeopardizing my skills and my future career potential if I stayed.

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  9. "Good work experience - uncertain future"

    4.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Sales Consultant 
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

    I have been working at Kensington Tours full-time

    Pros

    fun workplace environment, great coworkers, independence within your role, good commission potential, work from home, yearly travel

    Cons

    terrible marketing and identity confusion, hiring too many people too quickly and the company is losing sight of their model, competition for sales and commission earnings decreasing over time. Not much room for growth. Lack of leadership where it is needed.

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  10. Helpful (2)

    "Some perks- but on a serious decline"

    2.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - DESTINATION SPECIALIST in Toronto, ON
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I have been working at Kensington Tours full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    great employees, FAM trips , potential for good commission ( but seems to be declining)

    Cons

    serious lack of communication across all levels of mgmt, unclear policies, fiscal punishment for agents, poor management, unclear expectations. Heavy work load, seriously declining employee morale , declining benefits, untrustworthy management .

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Found 77 reviews