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Why Use a Travel Agent?

Tuesday, September 2nd, 2014 | BLOG | No Comments

Why It Pays to Book with a Travel Agentkeep-calm-and-use-a-travel-agent

Booking a trip often proves to be an extremely stressful, grueling undertaking. You can spend hours online searching for deals on flights and hotels, bouncing from one website to another in pursuit of the perfect price. This kind of process is o ften headache-inducing: According to a recent survey by the I.B.M. Institute for Business Value, approximately 20 percent of more than 2,000 travelers worldwide said it took them more than five hours to search and book travel online. Faced with countless choices for flights, hotels, car rental, and tours, some consumers are dumping the DIY approach. To quote James Shillinglaw, editor-in-chief of Travalliancemedia, “There are simply too many travel products in the market today for individuals to decipher on their own. You need a guide to help you cut through all the different things out there that are available.” There’s a difference between price and value. Here are six reasons to consider booking your next vacation with a travel agent:

  • Save time
  • Save money
  • Learn what you want
  • Connections
  • Authenticity
  • Knowledge
  • Troubleshooting

  Taken from: http://money.usnews.com/money/personal-finance/articles/2012/04/30/why-it-pays-to-book-with-a-travel-agent

Do you remember the days when it wasn’t a faceless online search engine that helped you find the best deals on flights, but real live people called travel agents? One source says she scours the Web for deals but says her agent beats the prices she finds. Plus, the agency alerts her to local customs abroad and tosses in perks, such as setting up tours at popular sites so she doesn’t have to wait in lines. “We’ve outsmarted ourselves by not taking advantage of the knowledge that travel agents have.” In some cases, travel agents don’t charge their clients—for example, an agent who books a cruise may earn a 10% commission from the cruise line. Others impose booking fees—say, $35 for an airline ticket—or require a deposit that they’ll keep if you cancel. The more complex or luxurious the trip, the more useful an agent can be. Agents have an inside track on deals and upgrades, and they can quickly solve problems or change plans while you’re on a trip. Let’s take a scenario such as the passengers on the stranded cruise ships faced when they finally reached port and their cruise was terminated early. If you had a travel agent, you could already have a nice air-conditioned hotel room waiting for your arrival or your airline tickets could already be rebooked so you just have to head back home instead of waiting hours on end for someone to help you find a place to sleep. Maybe you would even like to just stay at the beach a few days. All arranged for you while you wait to get back to dry land. Taken from: http://www.kiplinger.com/article/spending/T059-C000-S002-travel-agents-vs-do-it-yourself-online-travel-book.html#h4kumdxu8DpDDJUG.99

Even for budget travelers, the overall experience can offer better value, was found in a recent test of agents versus online search engines. This survey showed “Agents won nearly every time, on both price and service. In other words, the agents suggested alternate routes, gave advice on visas and just generally acted, well, more human than their computer counterparts”. Taken from: http://frugaltraveler.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/02/14/is-the-best-travel-search-engine-around-the-corner/

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