Meet Indra Purmale

Indra Purmale started working as an Assistant Tour Coordinator at Academic Arrangements Abroad in August 2010. She later became Co-Manager of the entire Tour Coordinator department and then advanced to become Manager of Tour Operations and Development.


Riga, Latvia. I actually just got back from a wonderful vacation there with my friends and family.

Indra in LatviaI was also able to attend the famous Song & Dance Festival that occurs there every five years. It has taken place since 1873 and is a way for our small nation to develop and strengthen our identity. UNESCO has recognized this unique event as a Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity!

City you most recommend to friends:

Barcelona, Spain. However, after my recent trip to Colombia I find myself recommending Medellín more and more!

City you would drop everything to see:

Tokyo, Japan. I’m a very detail-orientated person, and the Japanese are all about the details, from their fashion and interior design to their anime and food creations!

Which AAA programs do you enjoy working on the most?

Indra in tallinnHonestly, I enjoy working on all of them, but I have a special place in my heart for our Baltic programs since I often get to work with our partners in my native Latvia.

I also enjoy all of the South America itineraries I’m currently working on. There always seems to be something new I discover or learn!

Special skills:

My secret Latvian language abilities. I am actively trying to get back to the Spanish fluency I had in college. I’m very involved with the trips we offer to Cuba and other Spanish- speaking destinations, so it is a useful language to have on the job!

Most visited websites:

The New York Times, Facebook, The Sartorialist, Travel + Leisure, Kayak, and Oanda (Currency Converter)

Something about you that surprises people:

I am the Vice President of the American Latvian Youth Association! Or perhaps that’s not so surprising… So I’ll divulge another one: I want to write a book someday.

Three things you can’t travel without:

An iPad mini (movies, magazines, books, news, all in one place!), iPod nano (music is mandatory!), and a comfortable pair of shoes that are also chic (gotta look good while doing lots of sightseeing!).

Number of trips you’ve been on:

Indra in HelsinkiI’ve been a Tour Director on several of our firm’s programs, but have been on countless trips throughout my life.

Growing up, I traveled extensively with my family, which inspired me to continue traveling as I entered college and eventually made my career choice, which landed me here at AAA!

As Susan Sontag said: “I haven’t been everywhere, but it’s on my list.”

Who would play you in a movie?:

Ideally one of my best friends because she would be able to portray me best, through her perspective and interpretation of me of course! If asked to choose a celebrity, I would be honored to have Charlize Theron play me in a movie. I think she’s extremely talented AND beautiful!

Anything else you’d like to add?

I love quotes and aphorisms, something I inherited from my late grandmother.  Here’s one of my recent favorites to share with you today:  “I don’t want to be the one who says life is beautiful.  I want to be the one who feels it.”  – Marty Rubin


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