From waiting rooms to living in basement apartments, three travel hosts tell CNBC how they got to where they are today.
Here is their story.
work: Emmy award-winning TV hostSamantha Brown’s Favorite Places“
“I went to musical theater at Syracuse University. I was desperate to move to New York City and become a theater person. I wanted to do Shakespeare, I wanted to be on Broadway.
It didn’t work. I waited at a table for 8 years. But I loved to improvise and was in an improvisational comedy group. So I kept auditioning for jobs.
Samantha Brown said the best part of her job is “not being able to travel to all these free places, but being able to spend time with people in their daily lives.”
Source: Samantha Brown Media Inc.
A writer introduced me to a production company that was looking for a host. But my audition for it had to be completely improvised. That’s how I got a job.
There is no script when you are the travel host. Still, it’s up to you to define the scene and understand the trajectory of the story and its ending. again, Improvise, the golden rule is to never say no. It’s always a yes — to keep things going.
After eight years of waiting tables in New York City, you really start to humble yourself. [but] These were the tools I had that allowed me to land a job I never dreamed of. “
Job: Creator ofstrictly gyoza” and other YouTube channels (total: about 8 million subscribers)
Start: Accounting and Wedding Videography
“I moved to the US from China when I was eight. My parents started working in restaurants and eventually started a very American Chinese restaurant. I grew up eating Rangoon on a regular basis.
Where I came from wasn’t all that diverse, but it helped that my parents sent me back to China when I was 13. Most were confined and sent to their rooms as punishment. Year. At the time, I was like, ‘Wow, that’s so amazing—people, history—I want to know more.
After college, I went to New York and worked on Wall Street for a year. Then she wanted to be flexible, so she became a wedding videographer. I lived in a small basement apartment in Brooklyn with no air conditioning and he was making about $400 a week.
But it was the first time I ate anything other than Red Lobster and Olive Garden. Taste the diverse ethnic cuisines in Chinatown and start discovering much of the heritage that was previously underestimated.
I started taking videos of my meals on YouTube as my food diary. I remember a conversation I had with a friend that the content of food never amounted to anything. I didn’t see anyone doing it online. We had about 10 registrants. Somehow this grew into something I never expected.
Growing up, or throughout most of my adulthood, I never really had a lot of money. And that’s pretty much what I do all over the world right now. “
Occupation: TV presenter of “”Family trip with Colleen Kelly”
“I applied to the University of Texas Broadcasting School. The school gave you one chance to be accepted into the program. I never sat at an anchor desk with the camera facing me. It failed miserably.
A few years later, I graduated, got my first sales job, and eventually moved to Chicago to work in the pharmaceutical industry. The money was great and I had a company car. But I wasn’t living my dream and this really started to bother me.
I got married in my early 30s, quit my job and became a full-time housewife. One day, when my girlfriend’s two girls were in school, I went to City Hall’s cable TV station and asked if, in exchange for teaching me how to edit, they could host a local entertainment show about our village. I asked “For our town of her 50,000 residents.
Since there were no other offers, they said yes. I acted confidently, but I was as green as they were.
Colleen Kelly (left) with her family at Mirabell Gardens in Salzburg, Austria. Giants of Northern Ireland filming ‘Colleen Her Family Trip with Kelly’ at her Causeway (right).
Source: Kelly Media Productions LLC
I told another mom that my dream was to host a national travel show, and to my surprise, she agreed to work with me on the show. We wrote the script, found a local cameraman for a few bucks, and made the pilot.
I had meetings with two major companies and they both said no. One network told me that women don’t watch travel shows, so the concept of family travel doesn’t appeal to them. After that, I sent thousands of emails to TV stations. nothing worked. Finally, her mother suggested calling her local PBS station. I googled the head of programming, called him (no email), and attended a meeting.
After more meetings, I learned that PBS was planning to broadcast two shows nationally, and “Family Trip with Colleen Kelly” was one of them.
We scraped it off for a year and produced 13 episodes in the first season. The show has now been running for over ten years. And best of all, I can bring my family with me.
It’s been a long and arduous journey, but I hope this story inspires others to believe in themselves, ignore the naysayers, and never give up on their dreams. “
Editor’s Note: These interviews have been edited for length and clarity.