Charo and Anthony have known each other for many years. Both live and work in Compostela, in the old town, a few yards from the Cathedral. Charo has helped Anthony with IT, while Anthony has returned the favor with English lessons.
They have always joked about the possibility of working together, of getting something going. Until one day they found themselves talking about creating something that seemed a dream: a service company based on the Camino de Santiago . And thus the Way Services was born.
The idea was clear from the start: both wanted to contribute their knowledge and interests in the Camino, while using their contacts and business experience. On the one hand Charo already had a space in the city, her ‘Berenguela’ shop stands alongside the Cathedral, and also a ‘virtual’ space online- “elcaminotheway”.
“First”, says Charo, “there were the tours, because I knew that Anthony had personal experience in the travel industry and, for my part, I had contacts with suppliers and trusted guides”. She added that they could make an unique offer, for both Spanish-speaking pilgrims as well as those coming from abroad.
Anthony recalls that their first wish was to create a personized viagra pas cher service that would meet the needs of individual pilgrim. “We thought”, he says, “ that we only wanted to create something special that entertains and motivates us.”
Charo nods and says that’s why she’s so proud to know and personally deal with our suppliers. “Long before our customers set off”, she says, “ we ourselves journey along the way, trying out the hotels, the rural cottages or shelters that we offer. We are familiar with the food and services … We also participate directly in some of the tours, especially Anthony when Spanish lessons are involved”.
Anthony at this point cannot resist interrupting Charo: “that is the jewel of The Way Services. I’m referring, of course, to the offer of Spanish courses for foreigners on the Camino de Santiago. It is really flexible for those who choose to use it. You can either do short courses just on the Camino, with small groups and support teachers, or you can prolong the experience with lessons at the Workshop in Compostela, before or after the Camino. In fact, some people prefer to start with Spanish lessons via Skype of Hangouts, and then meet their teacher in person on the Camino”.
“For me”, adds Charo,”the technical side is also important. From the beginning, I thought we should offer tours with all the available technology. We know that some people just want to walk and forget about the phone, e-mail and their daily hassle. But it isn’t that. We want our clients to feel safe and comfortable. For example, we offer Spanish mobiles and locators that allow us to know where everyone is at any particular time. This way you can enjoy the freedom of walking on your own without there being any risk”.
“Yes”, Anthony adds, “technology is important when you want to provide a safe experience. This is an aspect that we have looked into in detail on the issue of bicycles. From the beginning we offer tours on foot and by bike, and knowing this, we provide the best road bikes at the top end of the market, with all the new features and enhancements that appear each year”.
Do you offer more than tours and Spanish courses? “Needless to say”, Anthony continues, “we offer English courses on the Camino. We have the experience and capacity to provide the same formats as with our Spanish courses”.
“Well”, says Charo, “we have big plans for the future … that’s why we chose the name ´Services, because we hope to expand our service offerings to pilgrims, for example with support services in Santiago de Compostela for those who meet with unforeseen problems, but we also want to create cultural events, guides and tours of the town and some of the landmarks of Galicia.’
Anthony concludes, “Our main concern, though, is to give everyone access to the Camino experience… even those who cannot devote too many days to walking, or want to avoid harsh conditions and crowds. I should add that we recommend the Winter Way for this very reason. I mean because it is less crowded. Finally, I want to insist that I think the Spanish courses will be a cornerstone of The Way Services”.
Thanks to the experience and success in their respective businesses, Charo and Anthony are well aware that the secret lies in maintaining high standards of quality. In addition, of course, to an unwavering desire to serve our customers.
This post is also available in: Spanish