Gillian Scatliff, cofounder of G&T Weekends, talks with us about how she uses MoonClerk to allow her to accept payments from international clients as well as pay her through installment plans.
Can you tell us a little about G&T Weekends?
We provide all-inclusive, luxurious (without the luxury price tag) weekends away for young professionals at chateaux, palaces and villas throughout Europe. During the day, our revelers (as we like to call our guests) enjoy activities like horseback riding, cooking classes and wine tasting. At night, we enjoy dinners catered by local chefs and dance all night to music played by our international DJs. Our trips are perfect for those looking for adventure, who love to travel, who love to meet new people, and who are too busy to spend weeks at a time planning holidays.
What are your day-to-day responsibilities?
Every day is different for me! I am constantly searching for new properties and planning every detail of our trips: this includes liaising with property owners, caterers, bus drivers, dive shops (for our sailing trip in Sardinia this year), florists, tour guides and vineyard owners… you name it! I also work out liquor and wine orders.
My co-founder, Tess, tends to handle more of the development of our business, so we touch base every day to go over our growth and plans.
How did your business get its start?
We hosted a weekend away for 60 of our friends at a luxury manor house in the English countryside in 2014. We planned every last detail, from bussing everyone to and from London, to providing catered meals, to providing staff to pour martinis for our James Bond-themed party, to organizing clay pigeon shooting and country walks. Our friends have busy lives and stressful careers – they loved being able to just show up for a weekend of great fun without lifting a finger. G&T Weekends was born, and our following trip was at a 17th century palace in Tuscany.
What have been some key factors in growing your business?
We take a lot of extra steps to make sure our clients are happy. This has encouraged a ton of word-of-mouth promotion to other guests.
We have been careful to save money any opportunity we can without sacrificing the quality of our trips – this includes asking for a lot of discounts and negotiating ways to cut back on costs that are beneficial to suppliers, as well.
This year, we also hired our first employee who manages our social media outlets. This has been hugely helpful to us, by both growing our business and allowing Tess and me to focus on actually planning the trips, and the bigger picture of our company.
What do you use MoonClerk for?
We now use MoonClerk for our international guests so they can pay in installments for their trips. Our (four or five day long) weekends are around £700, so guests appreciate being able to pay over a few months instead of up front.
We also have our payment for optional activities bookings on MoonClerk. Our guests use MoonClerk payment forms to pay in advance for champagne tastings, snorkeling, and tours.
Why did you start using MoonClerk?
We use Stripe on our website for people who prefer to pay upfront, and GoCardless for our UK customers who prefer to have direct debit installments taken from their bank account, rather than use a credit card.
Go Cardless in only available for UK bank accounts, and we weren’t able to find another system that allowed our clients to pay in installments.
Our trips are for young professionals, who often can’t afford to pay large amounts of money upfront for holidays. Paying a little bit each month on a credit card is a much easier option for our guests. This is hugely incentivizing for potential customers of ours.
What made you decide to use MoonClerk?
MoonClerk has an easy-to-use back end system, has a user-friendly checkout process, and has international capabilities.
What was your experience when switching and getting started with MoonClerk?
Great! MoonClerk is very easy-to-use – we started receiving payments the same day we activated our account!
What do you like about MoonClerk?
MoonClerk is incredibly easy to use, both for G&T Weekends and for our guests who are using it to book with us. MoonClerk’s low fees are also very helpful, and we like that we are able to easily integrate the payment form links into our website and emails.
How has MoonClerk improved or helped your business?
MoonClerk has improved our sales by giving us access to international customers, as well as organize our payments for activities.
Any advice for others who are in similar industries?
Take risks with new concepts and ideas. We are always on the lookout for ways to keep our trips new and exciting – don’t let your concept go stale.