Member Success Story: How the ATTA Helped the Explorer’s Passage Take Root

3 June 2014

The Adventure Travel Trade Association exists for and because of our members. Our membership program is designed to help businesses thrive by providing access to the global adventure travel community and all the business development ideas that come from it. The more time members put in to using this community, the more fruit their membership will bear.

The Explorer’s Passage (TEP) is a tour operator member of the ATTA that focuses on well-researched itineraries that tell a story. TEP chose to dive in and utilize a large portion of what ATTA has to offer to its membership pool. “We had the benefit of having access to a vast array of adventure travel industry resources to launch our company,” founder Jeff Bonaldi says about how TEP came to be. “From building out our staff, to finding the right guide partners to obtaining the necessary legal and industry advice, the ATTA has helped make building each and every area of our company easier.”

Bonaldi explains some of the key resources TEP has been using from their ATTA membership:

Adventure Career Center

The Adventure Career Center is designed as a job listing tool specifically for the adventure travel industry. The Explorer’s Passage took advantage of 40% off job postings for members and subsequently hired two individuals for their Adventure Consultant opening. "By driving more qualified applicants to employers, the Adventure Career Center has saved ATTA Members and other companies in the industry countless hours,” says ATTA President Shannon Stowell.


The ATTA helps tour operators and other companies within the industry connect with ATTA members, resulting in mutually beneficial business partnerships. The Explorer’s Passage, for example, was introduced to Jeff Ment of Rome McGuigan, P.C.  for help with legal advice. Richard Weiss of Strategic Travel Consulting helped during TEP’s initial business development, and operational and marketing strategy came from Russell Walters of Northern Outdoors (Weiss and Walters are both educators for ATTA’s AdventureEDU programs). In addition to these personal introductions, Bonaldi was able to use the ATTA Member Directory, The HUB and ATTA’s site to search for potential tour partners and tourism boards.


The Explorer’s Passage admitted that as a start-up tour operator, it was difficult to identify an E&O insurance provider to work with. Through another personal introduction from the ATTA, Bonaldi was able to connect with a fellow member who went through a similar process and even got a quote through the same vendor.

The Explorer’s Passage is a fresh face in the industry, but the ATTA has helped give Bonaldi and his team a good head start in getting established. “As we enter the next stage of our development,” Bonaldi says, “we continue to leverage the numerous resources the ATTA has to offer. The relationships we are building by attending networking events and reaching out through the HUB have been greatly helpful in growing our business.”

The Explorer’s Passage is looking to expand its offerings to new locations across the globe and plans to use ATTA members to create exceptional adventure travel experiences for their customers.


For questions regarding your current membership with ATTA or inquiries for accessing benefits, exposure opportunities and networking, please contact the Member Advocate for your region:

Europe: Ulrika Larsson, [email protected]
Latin America: Rebeca Yanez, [email protected]
Everywhere else: Sarah Earp: [email protected] // +1 (360) 805-3131

For questions about becoming an ATTA member, please visit our Membership page or contact [email protected] to get connected with the Business Development team in your region.