Travel Agents Don't Cost More
Why should anyone use a travel agent?
Back in the fall a nice lady called me wanting to do a Seine river cruise and add a few nights in Paris along with it. She had seen the big brand commercials and just knew they were the perfect fit for her and her husband. In fact she said “I want to book a “*” river cruise”, calling the brand by name.
I began to compare her chosen brand with two others that are as good, or better. What I discovered is my favorite brand (and it isn’t the famous one) had an itinerary that offered 3 nights in Paris (rather than the big brand 2 nights) along with the same cruise itinerary and cabin category for $1800 less money. That’s right, a luxury vacation that was a day longer for $1800 less. Even better, the brand I suggested is a step up from the big brand, so she truly purchased a better experience, a longer experience, for less money.
Yesterday a nice lady from Houston called me. After comparing my top three brands she selected her favorite and I booked two Rhine river cruises for $100 per person less (there were four of them) than the online price for her. She was glad she called.
There are number of good reasons to use a travel agent, but the best reason is price. Our expertise allows us to steer you toward the best offers. Our input allows you to purchase the best experience at the best price-that means the best value for you. If you reach out to the brand directly they are never going to tell you their competition has a better product or better offer, are they?
It’s the same with fun in the sun vacations. Just because a particular resort is on sale doesn’t mean it’s the perfect fit for you and your family. When we offer our “deals of the day” we still insist on talking to you personally about the resort. Why? Because it may not be right for you, there may be another brand or resort or even destination that more suitably meets your needs. We’re going to get the same or better price than you find online, so why not utilize our expertise?
How do Travel Agents make their money?
I wish I had a dollar for every time someone said to me “I’d use a travel agent but I just can’t afford to pay extra for their services”. What? Did you know you don’t pay a dime, not even a penny, extra for our services?
Here’s how it works-all travel companies (Funjet, Apple, Viking, even Expedia) factor into their pricing a set amount to pay a travel agent for selling their travel packages. If you, as the customer, go directly to the vendor (Funjet, Apple, Viking or Expedia) you get exactly the same price we get. That’s right; it doesn’t cost you one red cent more to allow us to book your vacation.
If you book directly with the travel company you not only don’t save any money (they simply put into their pocket the money already set aside to pay us) you don’t benefit from our expertise. Take that lady that I mentioned earlier, if she had called the big brand directly she would have paid more and received less. Does that seem like a good deal to you? Just as importantly, you won’t benefit from our assistance in case of a problem. Believe me, we book millions of dollars in travel annually, and even though no one thinks it’s going to happen to them, problems do arise.
Please feel free to forward this information to your friends. I want everyone to know about us, about what we do, how we do it, and why they should give the agents at The Joy of Travel a chance to earn their business.