Vacations should, by definition, be an escape — a reprieve from the day-to-day tedium that overwhelms us once in a while. Sometimes, though, the reality proves to be less heavenly and more hectic. For instance, when you’re trying to make sure that all five cousins, four nieces, three nephews and two sets of grandparents get from point A to point B without major incident, you might find yourself feeling like you are coming unwound — and not in the “sitting by the pool with an umbrella in your drink” kind of way.
Central Florida is one of the most popular vacation destinations in the U.S., with more than 72 million visitors a year, but it certainly isn’t immune to the pitfalls and perils of vacation logistics. The process of planning an itinerary and booking hotels, activities and transportation can feel like being lost in a maze. That’s why Pegasus Transportation is innovating the whole process for Central Florida with its award-winning technology, taking inspiration from its winged mascot to offer a bird’s-eye view of everything the region has to offer, and breaking ground in group, leisure and corporate travel.
Getting Off the Ground
In 1994, Fernando Pereira founded VIP’s Jet Tours, hoping to set a new precedent for the transportation service industry in Central Florida.
The company continued to grow, and in 2000, with the addition of its first 61-seat bus, VIP’s Jet Tours officially became Pegasus Transportation. Through every transformation, the company has stayed true to the goal of going “above and beyond” the needs of clients, which today number upwards of 100,000 passengers a year.
“Our whole philosophy is to put our hearts in servicing our clients,” Pegasus Vice President Claudia Menezes said. “We always strive to deliver more than 100 percent. We want to go above and beyond to fulfill our clients’ needs.”
In 2007, that growth hit a major milestone with the addition of a second location in South Florida, which was followed in 2010 with the construction of a permanent headquarters in Orlando. Menezes was brought on a year later, solidifying a team and a foundation that could sustain the company’s next steps: branching out to hotels and attractions, and implementing new technology for streamlining both travel planning and travel itself.
The first of these innovations was Web Integrated Network Group Services software — or W.I.N.G.S. With this software, available on smartphones and tablets, users can keep track of their Pegasus transportation, hotel information and attraction tickets.
With an overview of the group’s schedule, those using W.I.N.G.S can see pick-up and drop-off times and locations, as well as track their trip with GPS. The app also offers boarding checks. Using a QR code scanned with a phone or tablet, groups can see a list of each passenger who has boarded.
It isn’t just the journey that Pegasus has covered. The software also helps groups stay organized at their destination with an overview of hotel reservation details such as number of people per room, which room each guest should be in, and check-in and check-out information. Dinner reservations, attraction tickets (including those to Walt Disney World, Universal Studios and SeaWorld) and other activities can also be placed in the system, creating an easy-to-view and organized itinerary.
Reinventing the Marketplace
Further expanding its reach, Pegasus now has a booking platform as well. Pegasus Marketplace allows users to find and shop for products, services, event tickets and more. Included are Pegasus services and those of partners, like Walt Disney World, giving customers easy access to the latest events and attractions, and helping them through the booking process, all on one platform.
After nearly two decades, Pegasus Transportation has continued changing to fit the needs of its customers. While maintaining a dedication to reliable and comfortable transportation, the company has expanded and evolved, developing technology and customer service standards to reshape travel in Central Florida — ensuring that the journey is every bit as enjoyable as the destination.