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If you fancy a road trip in the USA, then you must read this article

Updated: Jan 7, 2023

In connection with my trip to the USA in 2022, I met several Norwegians who know a lot about vacationing in the USA, and this article is about Kjetil Sveistrup, who runs the travel company, Hop A Long Travel (Hopalong). We sit and have a cup of coffee and Kjetil tells us that he is from Kåfjord in Nord-Troms and via several stopovers he ended up in St Augustine in Florida. He emphasizes that he also lives in Norway and that his family there is important to him,,

Kjetil Sveistrup ute på fotojakt

He smiles proudly and goes on to say that in 2009 Hopalong Travel AS was started in Trondheim and the idea was to develop group tours to the USA, specially adapted for Norwegians. The smile remains lose today and he goes on to say that the first customer was his old employer, AMCAR Norway. After the success of the first trip, we understood that this was a good idea and that we had hit the spot later the customers flocked and the trips have become many. What was the reason why you chose this particular type of trip. The answer comes quickly. I love to travel and experience new places and the USA has always been my favorite destination. I quickly learned that the vast majority of people want and need a little help with the planning in order to get the most out of both the trip and the money. Remember the US is a big country and if you don't have experienced people to help you, you may end up spending more searching than just traveling straight to your destination. At my own expense, I must vote here. I myself have been to the USA many times and most recently in the summer of 2022, I drove over 3,500 miles. Yes, I learned a lot about this very thing,?and as it says in the "mountain wisdom rules", listen to famous people. Les gjerne mer om mine opplevelser - klikk her

Tell us a little more about what you offer. Yes, I'm more than happy to do that, he says and the smile is still loose, this is something he's passionate about, I think in my quiet mind and he continues: We put together and offer complete tour packages with a day-by-day program. In addition, we have experienced that the more we put into the package, the more satisfied the customers are. This is everything from flights, hotels, rental cars, and other transport. At the same time, we always focus on ensuring that each tour participant has full freedom to arrange the days as they wish, but within the framework of the tour program itself. We suggest attractions and activities, but since we most often use a rental car, the participants retain the freedom they want.

lite utvalg av leiebiler

It could be when they want to check out of the hotel, when and where they eat lunch, which individual activities they want to participate in, and which detours they themselves want. It turns out that when the participants get to know each other, they often plan together, but everyone keeps the actual program and the main attractions. They become like a big family after a few days and it's really nice! He adds that if there are requests for shared transport, they adapt buses and or other suitable-sized vehicles so that those who do not wish to drive seals will also be able to take part in these great experiences. There have probably been some challenges along the way since 2009. Kjetil thinks about it a bit, - yes, but no more than the usual small business challenges, such as not having enough hours in the day. Tell us a bit about who is traveling on your trips. He tells willingly. We mostly have small groups on trips throughout the year. Most of these travel on their own, but we have groups between 15 to 25 and larger group tours on set dates each year. Some of the tours are open to everyone and often advertised on our website, but we also offer private tours for specific clients and their employees, customers, and or members of an organization. We often have company trips to fairs and with professional benefits and company visits are also very popular He continues, trips to trade fairs are always popular, so in March 2023 we are going with a group of Norwegian entrepreneurs to a large building and construction fair in Las Vegas. In addition, fair trips for the car and truck industry are very popular.

If you were to choose a holiday trip for private individuals that are particularly popular, which one would you choose? No doubt, he says with a big smile, - Route 66 and if I may add one more, it's music tours along The Blues Highway I wonder if the participants are happy and if old customers will return. Yes, I can answer that with a clear YES. On every trip we run now, there are many who have been there before and most of our new customers have received a recommendation from someone who has already been on a trip with us in the past. We sit down and take a look at the program for 2023, and Kjetil this looks very exciting! Yes, that's right, and these are tours we know people will like. First, we have the Blues Highway, along old Highway 61 that winds north from New Orleans, along the Mississippi River, towards Memphis, and on to Nashville. I vote yes because I can guarantee that this trip is fantastic because I experienced this myself in 2022. (read here)

Then comes my dream trip, which I have not yet had the chance to experience, because the last time I planned it, the pandemic stopped me in 2020, but now I just have to be happy. Yes, that's right, Kjetil. Our trip on Route 66 goes all the way from Chicago to Los Angeles and takes a 3-week trip. It's quite a long time, I say. Yes, it may seem that way, but if you want to enjoy the trip and experience everything that is on the way, then three weeks is a must!

Furthermore, we have a unique car tour with a Corvette and Woodward tour which is for people with a great interest in cars, and there are actually quite a few of them. Otherwise, we have trips to Las Vegas /SEMA tour and Florida tours in November (see above) After all, we adapt the tours to the customers' wishes and, in addition to corporate customers on professional tours, families, and couples often travel on our tours, which are open to everyone. Some have traveled extensively in the USA before, while others are first-time travelers and on the larger group tours, between 20% and 30% are first-time travelers. Where in Norway do your customers come from? They come from all over the country and continue. Eastern Norway probably accounts for the largest number, followed by many from South-Western Norway, but as I said, they come from all over Norway. What they all have in common is that, like us, they have an above-average interest in the United States. If I summarize your trips, there is a lot of car-related content, with car meets, racing, exhibitions, or fairs. Yes, that is correct and it is connected to the fact that many in the car enthusiast market and Amcar markets know us well. Spouses, children, and friends are often included, so the customer group expands. Since we have received more requests, we also have more tours with a focus on music, sports, nature, big cities, etc., yes, now we appeal to a much wider audience, and we also have many great USA tours on the block, he hurries to add with a big smile. I thank Kjetil for the talk and encourage anyone interested in the USA to follow their websites!



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