Sunday, February 28, 2010

Part 4 of Series: 101 Reasons to Use a Travel Agent

Part 4 of Series: 101 Reasons to Use a Travel Agent

Just recently I had a client who had to cancel a trip. It's not fun when a client has to cancel, but that's the nature of the business - life happens. The person is great, so I have no doubt they will plan another trip soon, so that makes me feel good. The thing that was interesting was a comment that was made to me by this individual, "It's great that I don't have to track down and call all over the place. It's wonderful working with you, because I only have to call one place and everything is taken care of for me. I know there are times I can book on my own, but I just love your personalized attention - you really know how to take care of people."

That is the biggest compliment anyone could have paid me...well, short of booking a trip.

  • Confusing International Connecting Flights - Avoid International Flight Confusion travel specialists can help organize those confusing international flights that the internet search engines don’t cover.

  • Where to Go With Kids - Travel agents can help you to find great locations that are kid- friendly.

  • Trip Cancellation - Something has come up and you need to cancel your trip? If you have used a travel agent they are the only person you need to call.

  • Travel Insurance - With all the countless options for travel insurance these days, it can become confusing. A travel agent can help you pick which package works best for your needs.

  • Personalized Trips - A travel agent can prepare you a personalized trip based on where you want to go and what you want to do. They won’t give you generic website trips that are posted because the destinations are being pushed during a slow season.

*Source: American Society of Travel Agents

Sunday, February 21, 2010


I mean no disrespect, but go somewhere. All I hear everyday is how bad the economy is...nobody is spending any money...everyone is losing jobs...everyone is going crazy, but they aren't going AWAY!

Quite frankly I am sick to death of all of the naysayers expounding on all the negativity around us. Guess what, we will all persevere and we will be ok. It won't be fun, pretty or necessarily the time of our lives, but we will be ok. With all of that being said...GO AWAY!

Get in your car and do a "staycation" at a lovely Inn or Resort in your town. If you have a little extra money, go to another state, and for those who are just really living large - leave the country! Just go somewhere. The most cathartic times of our lives can be when we leave our everyday existence and try something different and extraordinary.

All too often people will put off until tomorrow, what they can do today or because of the economy, they don't even want to plan for tomorrow. Guess what, if you don't live today, you aren't guaranteed a tomorrow. I'm not trying to be morbid or condescending, but I know from experience that you are only truly living life by being an active participant in life!

Along this same vain, I am starting my preliminary plotting for the wine vineyards I'll be visiting this Spring, Summer and Fall in Colorado. I'm getting out and going, so I hope to see some of you out there going too!

*photo provided by that Chick Té from her lovely trip to Paris, France.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010


"Behold Hawaii" was one of the first movies I ever saw at the IMAX theater when it was first built. Anybody who has ever been to the IMAX knows that the screen is gigantic and simply - awesome. Watching that movie at a very young age left a huge impression on me, and from the moment the movie started I almost stopped breathing. The crashing waves and varying hues of the most beautiful ocean I had ever seen, but nothing could compare to my real life experience.

A couple of years ago, me and a few friends went to Kauai. They all thought it was unbelievable that out all of the places I'd been, I had never been to Hawaii. I guess you could say I took it for granted. When I travel I like to go to far away, exotic places. Not to say Hawaii isn't far enough away (trust me, that plane ride proves just how far away it is); and it definitely fits the bill of being exotic...I guess I just thought, "Oh well, it's a part of the U.S., so I can go anytime."

BOY, I was really missing out. The moment we stepped off the plane in Honolulu and I felt that languid breeze blow over me, I knew I was going to love it there. We jumped on another plane to fly over to Kauai, and I said to myself, "Self - you could hole up and write here." The relaxed nature of the extremely friendly natives (yes, me and my friends were invited by a complete stranger to celebrate Labor Day at their house with friends); the great food, the delicious fragrance of the night blooming jasmine, and of course - the ocean, were all more than I could have ever dreamed.

I had so many memorable moments while I was vacationing there, but one of the most memorable was on a Friday evening. We took a sunset cruise and one of the passengers leaned over and said to me, "Friday Happy Hours will never be the same after this experience!" He was so spot on! The small crew of the "Captain" and his three young, handsome and friendly "Mates" took very good care of us, but the icing on the cake was the opportunity to see the giant Sea Turtles, and the beautiful Dolphins with their babies, who swam along our boat for quite some time before high tailing it out of there before (very predictable) evening showers.

I'm not one of those people that is adverse to going back to the same places again and again, but on the same token, I believe there is so much out there to see and experience, why go back to the same places repeatedly - Hawaii won over my heart. I know several people who own time shares in Hawaii and I can tell you, I can't wait to go back again.
Right now Hawaii is on sale! Some of the best properties are offering wonderful specials to entice people back to traveling again, and with the opening of Donald Trump's newest property, Trump Tower, in Waikiki, I can say that this Chick is chomping at the bit to go back...soon.

Wanderlust is an awesome feeling, so I hope that some of you contact us at Chicks That Trip, so we can get you on your way to Hanalei - you know...where "Puff The Magic Dragon" lives.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Part 3 of Series: 101 Reasons to Use a Travel Agent

Part 3 of Series: 101 Reasons to Use a Travel Agent

Being a travel professional is just like any other consultative job that people have. We are providing a (much needed) service that is sometimes NOT recognized as being important until it's too late. I say that because there has been a lot of chatter about travel insurance; which is one of those things you wish you had - when you don't have it. Travel insurance has always been something important, but until 2001, a lot of people would forego it as "unnecessary." There was a recent story (in the travel agent community) about a relatively young person who (fortunately) HAD travel insurance and had to use it on a trip when an unexpected (fluke) back injury occurred, and the traveler had to leave the trip earlier than anticipated. They had to make only one call, and that was to their travel professional, and everything else was taken care of with minimal, to any out-of-pocket costs to that person.

Many people are under the impression that working with a travel professional costs a lot of money; it doesn't. While a lot of travel professionals charge a small consultation fee, it is more than earned by the amount of knowledge, research, and time that goes into most itineraries. Also, much like insurance, it's peace of mind. They are there to make the calls that you may not be able to make while you are traveling domestically or abroad. As a travel professional myself, I know that I perform a lot of support to my clients that really aren't "travel related," but helps them to mentally prepare for, and enjoy their vacation.

Perhaps like "Secretary's Day," they will come up with a "Travel Professional's Day"....I can dream can't I????

  • Best Value for Your Money Spent - Travel agents can help you to make your dollars go farther while you are away. They have access to finding all sorts of deals ranging from flights to hotels to dinner recommendations.
  • Location, Location, Location!!!! - Travel specialists can help you to find a place to stay pretty much anywhere you desire. So if it’s a hotel with a view of the ocean in Hawaii or a jungle hut in the Nigril foothills, a travel agent can help you make it happen.
  • Knowledge of All the Ins and Outs - Travel specialists can help bring you up to speed on the local laws and regulations of wherever your travels take you.
  • Credentials - Travel agents attend all sorts of seminars and classes to prepare themselves for trip requests like yours, in addition to traveling to many places themselves to be as informed as they can on your places of interest.
  • Tourist Attractions - Travel agents can give you a list of all the not-to-miss spots, such as. Like amusement parks, museums, nature preserves, and historical locations etc.

*Source: American Society of Travel Agents