Travel insights from Carl Howard, travel agent at Bentley Hedges Travel and founder of Breaking Bread PdC

I Love Mexico and I Started a Tour Company to Show It

As an agent who specializes in destination weddings and romance travel, I have spent a lot of time with groups (and personal vacations) in Riviera Maya, Mexico. I have many friends who work at various hotels in the region. The constant negative media attention on Mexico in general and Cancun and the Riviera Maya in particular is frustrating. With a good friend in the region, we have been working on experiences (not a traditional tour of ruins, nightlife, etc.) with a goal of helping to dispel the media-influenced "fear factor" of the region. Our program, called Breaking Bread PdC, also helps to support a senior community in the area as well as collect school supplies for children in need.

Breaking Bread PdC is a multicultural tour experience that allows hotel guests to meet and really learn about the people who live in the area. From the original meaning of "sharing the loaf," hotel guests will visit the home of one of our local hosts and break bread together, sharing a light meal or snack and beverages. By meeting local residents in their home, talking and exchanging ideas, we can share the “secret” that Quintana Roo is a world-class destination rich with culture, history and wonderful, hardworking, friendly and interesting people.

Our detailed interview process, which includes a home visit with each of our hosts (we call them our bakers), has given us an amazing group of hosts to share their love of the area as well as great food, history, culture, music and more.

Breaking Bread Experiences include a host of the client's choosing, a meal or snack plus beverages, and private (non-shared) transportation to the host's home. We realize hotel guests get nervous or anxious at the thought of leaving their resort. For participants' peace of mind, their driver will remain with them until they return to their hotel. Subject to our host availability, an experience can be scheduled any day of the week and includes either 4-hour or 6-hour door-to-door transportation and experience.

Future plans include Breaking Bread Small Group Experiences for birthdays, anniversary, engagement, bachelorette parties and special holiday events. We also have plans for Breaking Bread Community Experiences. Ideas for these include regular (monthly) events with a local pet rescue mission, interaction with a senior group and a local ecology group working with the sargassum problem.

Our main objective for starting Breaking Bread was to develop a cultural program that makes clear to visitors why Quintana Roo is considered a world-class destination rich with culture, history and society in the comfort of the homes of local residents. You can learn more about us and our bakers on our website, our YouTube channel, our Pinterest board or by following our hashtag #breakingbreadpdc on Instagram. We feel confident that our project will help to change opinions of this beautiful region – even if by just one loaf of bread at a time.

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