Sunday, May 15, 2011

Part 19 of Series: 101 Reasons To Use A Travel Agent

Part 19 of Series: 101 Reasons To Use A Travel Agent

Have you ever been in the process of researching the purchase of a car, and all of a sudden that one model you've looked at seriously starts popping up every where you go? You can be in a mall parking lot, at a gas station, grocery store, freeway; just about any where, and you are seeing that car. Well, I've been feeling that way about travel; more specifically, stories about travel agents and their "resurrection." Five years ago, the inevitable extinction of travel professionals was being touted everywhere as being the "last of a dying breed." OUCH!

I am happy to report that the trend is now being reported in the opposite direction (like I didn't know this already). It seems not everybody feels that travel professionals are going the way of the dinosaur; in fact, I was recently reading an article in the Washington Post, whereby the author is extolling the virtues of using a travel agent, and how many people are going back to their preferred travel agents to book their trips. You can read the full story here at:

It doesn't surprise me at all, and as a matter of fact, there are more and more people I've been coming into contact with that indicate they don't mind doing some research on their own, but ultimately when it gets down to the final recommendations for lodgings, activities, and "must see/do" items, they still prefer working with a travel professional. I have said it once, but it deserves repeating; you can have 100 people who prefer to only do online banking; however, you will always have another segment (although it is a smaller percentage) that will want to have that face time with a banker. Also, for those who prefer 24/7 online access, they will still come across situations where they need to speak with a real, live person. Travel is the same thing. Yes, there is a lot of information out there, but a lot of times people like the idea of contacting one person to help them plan everything and be done with it; versus spending hours and hours trying to out beat the lowest price. There are individuals who see the value in not expending their time doing something that they can have done by someone else.

Is the Upgrade Worth It? – Your travel expert can help you save money by helping you decide if certain upgrades at hotels are really worth the extra money.
Difference in Days to Save Money
– Instead of playing around with dates on the internet for hours your travel agent can advise you on any changes to your travel dates that might save you hundreds of dollars.
Staying In-the-Know of Daily Promotions –
Travel agents get emails and faxes of daily money saving promotions.
Enhancing the Trip with Extra Amenities –
Your travel specialist may be able to arrange for those little extras like a bottle of champagne to be waiting in your room when you arrive.
Using Clout in Impossible Situations –
Whether it is air line seats, cruise reservations, or overbooked activities travel experts have more buying power than the average consumer.

*source information provided by ASTA

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