Meet the Team
The team at Live the Journey are all experts in their field and bring travel experience from across the world. Our logistical field teams and guides are without a doubt the best in the industry and are living their journey every day by making sure that our clients get the best possible experience. Our team of travel consultants and administrative support staff aspire to be master craftsmen of our trade. We organize with unforgettable journeys in mind.
Meet our office team:
Jurgens Schoeman – Group Managing Director
Travel is all about inquisitiveness. There is nothing more exhilarating than discovering a new destination or just driving a route for the first time going from one horizon to the next. My travels have been filled with amazing things. I am hooked on natural wonders … seeing the red glow of a volcano at night excites me and the vastness of a desert makes me humble. Often routes follow the path of destruction left by wars or that of awesome historical achievements. I love exploring and visiting places to learn and broaden my view of life, but with a desire to share these experiences with people. Helping them to create life enriching travel memories. Travel always changes people and I would like to think I made a small contribution towards that in other peoples lives. Our life is one journey and we must live this journey by filling it with travel memories.
Johan van Tonder – Director of Contracting
Since I can remember I have been fascinated by the habitats of plants, wild animals but especially birds. It has always been my hobby and after six years of practising civil engineering, I decided to make my hobby my profession and formed a safari company. Specialising in bespoke tours I have been fortunate enough to bring my passion for wildlife alive. It also got me travelling and today, thirteen years and fourteen countries later, I am just getting keener for the next destination. As a traveller I love working with fellow travellers. You might say we’re birds of a feather.
Hein Truter - Managing Director Namibia
My love affair with travel started when I got the opportunity to live in some of the most extraordinary places in the world, not to mention the 50+ countries I visited during this time. While it’s impossible to forget the hustle and bustle of Taiwan and Iraq, the ravishing coastline of Vietnam, the dramatic beauty of Jordan, and the welcoming locals of Mozambique, it’s what I gained living and interacting with the local cultures on a personal and intimate level that will forever stay with me. Throughout all my adventures, I always remembered my heritage and made it my responsibility to be a proud ambassador of one of the most vibrant and beautiful countries on earth – South Africa. From 2014 I embarked on a brand new adventure with Live the Journey to expand their success in the Namibian market. Now it’s my pleasure to not only host you in this beautiful land of extremes, but to make sure that you get to really live the full experience – every magical second of it!
Rijan Visser – Director of Marketing
Growing up in a family who loved to explore Africa the seed was planted to make a career of what I love doing most ……living the journey and exploring new horizons. After university I travelled the UK and Europe, mostly working on yachts in the Caribbean and Mediterranean, but at the end my heart pulled me back to where I belong…Africa. I have visited 42 countries to date but will never stop travelling as I believe it constantly changes your view of the world in a positive way.
Elsabeth Muller – HOD: Outbound
S A Tourism was my stepping stone into tourism 25 years ago! I gained invaluable experience being responsible for and accompanying international journalists, TV crews and tour operators. Travel is a way of life for me and I have been blessed to have travelled to amazing places. My expertise lies in getting into the "shoes" of each destination that crosses my path getting to know it insight out. I have an inquisitive nature, a good general knowledge and I am always aspiring to broaden my horizons. Designing a new programme to a unique destination is a thrilling process and the fuel that gets my adrenalin pumping. Tell me where you would like to travel and I will make it happen. I love to arrange amazing trips for my clients.
Kim van der Westhuizen - HOD: Inbound
My passion for people and their stories took me overseas straight after school. During my travels I really learned and realized what an amazing country I have to call my home. The opportunity to be involved in tourism, representing our country, knocked on my door and I grabbed it with both hands. This is now close to 15 years ago and I still have the same passion and pride. The years allowed me to explore South Africa and neighbouring countries through my professional and personal travels, which gave me more insight and understanding of Southern Africa and its history. I started off as a consultant from where I climbed the ladder in a large company. When the opportunity to be involved with Live the Journey arose, who share the same passion and sentiment, it was an easy decision and natural choice to join this dynamic, passionate team.
Hennie Albertse - Managing Director: The Travel Boutique
My travelling career started back in 1999 when I travelled extensively in South Africa as well as the Ukraine. Since then, I am humbled and privileged to have been part of many people’s life enriching journeys around the world! My personal travel experiences have greatly inspired me to design itineraries with life enriching experiences. To see increased smiles & a sparkle in our client‘s eyes after a holiday gives me purpose and fuels my passion to go beyond the extra mile.
Deona Nieuwoudt - Front Office
After more than 20 years in the corporate world I joined Live the Journey in April 2016 as front office host and co-ordinator. Being part of this highly specialised travel team made me realise that nothing is more important than living your passion each day. From welcoming our guests to co-ordinating the database and arranging fabulous functions, I truly enjoy what I do. Born and bred in the beautiful Boland town of Stellenbosch with its spectacular mountains and rolling vineyards, I love the great outdoors. Life for me is summed up in good fellowship, the scenery around us and off course good wine.
Jeanette Meiring - Consultant
After school, I didn’t know what to study and settled on Tourism as this seemed like a general enough field. In my mind, I could always study for another degree afterwards. Instead, I went on to finish my Honors degree in Tourism and have been working in the industry for 9 years. My passion for travel took me overseas for a year and my passion for people and discovering the world, kept me in the industry on my return. It is such a privilege to be part of realizing people’s travel dreams. One of my favorite quotes is from Lao Tzu, “The Journey of a thousand miles, begins with a single step.”
I have always had a passion for travel and discovering new places and cultures. My journey in travel started in 2007 after graduating with a diploma in Travel and Tourism. Entering the market as a fresh-faced travel consultant, I learned a lot about how to work with people and the many amazing destinations out there. 10 years in and I still love every minute of my job. I have travelled far and wide and have had the most wonderful experiences along the way. From sipping hot chocolate on top of the highest mountain in Europe, to eating fresh caught fish on a beach in Zanzibar. Becoming part of the Live the Journey family felt like coming home. Here we don’t just offer destinations, we offer life experiences! We create special memories to last you a lifetime and to keep you coming back for more.
Stella Neethling - Consultant
Nothing is more rewarding than knowing you have played a part in making someone’s dream holiday a reality! This knowledge, together with my love for travel, has been the driving force behind my 15-year career in the travel industry. I am thankful to have worked for some of South Africa’s top hospitality groups and tour operators, gaining invaluable experience and travelling the globe. At Live the Journey I am surrounded by a team of like-minded specialists – passionate about sharing the adventure, unique cultures, iconic history and natural wonders of this fascinating world.
Abby Cronje - Consultant
My journey with Travel and Tourism started when I was in Grade 10 when I chose Tourism as a subject. As soon as I started, I realised that I enjoyed it a great deal and could see myself making a career out of it. After completing a course in Travel & Tourism Management, I started working in the industry and have not looked back since. I thoroughly enjoy putting together an itinerary for guests - starting with only the dates, planning and booking every single aspect of their journey until they arrive in our country. I soon realised the privilege I have of inviting tourists to this wonderful destination and having them experience as much as possible that this country has to offer in only a few days. When the opportunity arose to join the Live The Journey team, I couldn’t refuse – the name says it all!
Susan Theron - Consultant
My passion for the travel & tourism industry started when I was only sixteen. A part-time job at a hotel became permanent when my High School career ended and from there my journey unfolded in the industry. My daring sense of adventure took me to the UK where I lived and worked in London for a few years gaining extensive experience in the travel & tourism industry. Upon my return, I started working in MICE focusing on incentives and tailored travel and this has kept me motivated and traveling around Africa for 8 years. My love, pride and passion for Africa, an immense and highly diverse continent full of dramatic scenery, captivating cultures, and amazing animals makes my job so easy! Live the Journey has provided me with a platform from where I can continue to express my enthusiasm and making travel dreams a reality for that important, special person on the other side of the world.
Tanya Engelbrecht - Consultant
I ended up in tourism by accident about 10 years ago after struggling to find work. But I see it as a very big blessing! I truly enjoy putting an itinerary together for clients to come and experience our beautiful country and find great satisfaction in them returning to their own country with fantastic memories. It is an honour for me to be part of the Live the Journey family and I hope to make many more clients' travel dreams come true.
Guy van Greunen - Consultant
For 12 years I couldn’t wait to finish school but when my last day arrived I had no idea what I wanted to do for the rest of my life! I took a gap year with IALA that awoke the travel bug deep inside me. During that year I travelled extensively throughout South Africa experiencing & seeing places I hardly knew about. Thereafter, I enrolled for a B-com Tourism degree with the goal of exposing other people to the opportunity of experiencing this magnificent country in a unique way. No more day-dreaming about exotic destinations, now I Live the Journey every day!
Christene Payne - HOD: Finance
I studied my B.Compt degree at UNISA, completing my articles at a small audit firm where I left as an audit manager. After 10 years working in the corporate world I got the opportunity to get best of both worlds. Here at Live The Journey I find the place where my love for finance, people and nature meets. Nature is that one place were my soul is revitalised. As an insider I know that everyone in Live the Journey will do their utmost best to give our clients the best service possible - I'm proud to be part of this family.
Freda Fouché - Finance Department
I have always loved the tourism industry and the way it allows people to explore not just countries but also cultures. It is an industry that never stops growing and evolving which led me to study hotel management and complete my diploma at IHT Hotel School in Cape Town. Through previous experience I found that I enjoy the financial side of business and joined Live the Journey after my family and I moved to Worcester. I am very fortunate that I am in a position where I can work in an industry I love and still have time for family. I am very happy working for the LTJ Family and the opportunities we offer our staff and clients, as well as the values that the company stand for. We strive for excellence not just in service, but in quality, value and building lasting relationships with our clients, staff and suppliers.
Alida Venter – Tourplan Administrator
For over 18 years I have been working in the travel industry; from tour operator to conference specialist, from arranging fixtures for school sport groups and youth groups, handling all their logistics to corporate travel consultant as well as an incentive and events management specialist. I have a finger in every pie which has made me the expert I am today in every field. After I finished my studies, I was still unsure as to what I really wanted to do with my life, so I decided to travel first. After visiting places like Thailand, Hong Kong, Malaysia, UK, Mauritius, Qatar, Jordan, France, Slovenia and Namibia, I am still here and I still love it! Visiting, touching, living and understanding ancient history and cultures, gives one insight into the bigger picture of life.
Heidri Wessels - Tourplan Administrator
I grew up in a family who dedicated their lives to the tourism industry, especially in the Overberg district. From a time I can remember, we travelled to the different parts of South Africa which broadened my knowledge of the towns, people and nature of our country. I wish to continue my life journey as a travel consultant in the tourism industry where I can live out my passion for both people and tourism. I hope to give a memorable travel experience to my clients and walk in the footprints of my family by contributing towards the growth in the tourism industry.