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A 12-Year-Old Travel Agent Who Booked His Parent's Vacation


If vacation planning has you stymied, maybe you want to ask a kid for help, a 12-year-old like Leo Kugel. Mr. Kugel of Silver Spring, Md., both planned and booked his family's spring vacation this year. Leo Kugel joins us from his summer camp in Becket, Mass.

Mr. Kugel, thanks so much for being with us.

LEO KUGEL: Thank you so much for inviting me.

SIMON: Who's in your family again?

LEO: My dad, Jeremy; my brother, Grady; my mom, Katrina and - also on the trip, my Aunt Nancy came and my grandma.

SIMON: That's quite a group. Who was the most difficult to please?

LEO: I think my aunt because she lives in Florida, and so, like, Florida's kind of hard to beat. So I think that was the hardest.

SIMON: How did this responsibility fall to you?

LEO: Well, my family and I were looking for a fun spring break vacation, and we didn't want to spend too much money on it. So we were all looking for a place to go that was warm and fun. So I decided that I wanted to look and try and help the family. And I saw New Orleans, and it looks like a super fun place to go. So after a couple Google searches, I found the hotel. And I decided that I think we should go there.

SIMON: You guys had a good time?

LEO: Yeah, it was awesome. I loved it all. The food was especially good.

SIMON: You know, it's usually the parents who are trying to figure out how they can ever begin to please their children on a vacation. Was it just the reverse in this case?

LEO: I think so. I mean, I definitely wanted some stuff that I like.

SIMON: Yeah.

LEO: But when I heard that the hotel had a French name, I knew that my grandma would like it.

SIMON: (Laughter).

LEO: And my dad really likes food, too, so I knew that he would like the food.

SIMON: What was your favorite food in New Orleans?

LEO: The ham. We went to this ham place on our first night, and it was delicious. We sat in the back, and there was not that many people there. But it was so good, and we ate - I ate a lot of ham.

SIMON: Were there any mistakes, large or small, from which you learned in this trip?

LEO: Well, I don't think that we got enough hotel rooms because me and - like, I - in my sleep, I move around a lot.

SIMON: (Laughter) Yeah.

LEO: And so me and my brother were supposed to share a bed.

SIMON: Yeah.

LEO: But that didn't really work out, and so he ended sleeping on the floor after I kicked him.

SIMON: (Laughter) I don't mean to laugh. How's he doing? I mean, he's recovered from that?

LEO: I think he's recovered pretty well.

SIMON: Yeah, OK. That happens in families, though. The - you know, the youngest sometimes winds up on the floor. Or actually, often - I speak from experience - the father winds up sleeping on the floor.

LEO: One night I think my dad did sleep on the floor.

SIMON: Yeah. Well, that's what you do. Leo Kugel, who is a school kid and a travel agent - at least once - he joined us from his summer camp in Massachusetts.

Have a wonderful rest of the summer, Mr. Kugel, and good travels to you.

LEO: Thank you. You, too. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.