If you are interested in booking a vacation, you have two main choices. You can do the work yourself, or you can choose to work with a travel agent. Although many people think they will save time and money by doing the work themselves, it is the opposite that is usually true. The next time you plan a vacation, you should consider the following benefits to working with a travel agent.
Travel agents know the best days to travel.
When working with a travel agent, you are dealing with someone who not only books dozens (or even hundreds) of vacations every year, but also someone who probably travels often him or herself. Travel agents understand the best days to travel from a budget perspective, as well as from a time perspective. If your dates are flexible, a travel agent can help you find the cheapest, most hassle-free options.
Save money on flights, hotels, and other types of reservations.
Almost all travel companies offer group rates. The problem is, when you travel with your family, you likely will not have enough people to get that group discount, even if you travel with a big family. With a travel agent, you will get the discount because they buy tickets in bulk. You may also get a discount simply because travel professionals get special discounts through professional affiliations.
It takes virtually no work when you let a travel agent plan your vacation for you.
Although you should still do a little research in order to know what questions to ask your travel agent and to make wise decisions on your travel options, you should have to spend little or no time dealing with the details of final booking and other preparations. You will save hours and hours of time!
Travel agents can answer travel document questions.
Laws regarding visas and passports are constantly changing. Although you typically still have to go through the application process yourself, your travel agent can make sure that you understand important deadlines and answer your logistical questions.
You might get insider perks with travel agents.
Some vacation options and travel perks might only be available for people who book with a travel agent. In short, travel agents know the right questions to ask. For example, if you are a newlywed and book through a travel agent, they might be able to get you a honeymoon suite for the same price as a regular room. Travel agents know how to reap the most benefits when booking vacations.
Travel agents can answer questions about your destination.
Chances are that your travel agent (or someone in his or her office) has been to most of the common travel destinations. That means that they should be able to answer your questions about the vacation. From the best restaurants to what to expect when traveling around town on public transportation, travel agents know how to answer your vacation questions.
Travel agents can recommend travel options that are more affordable.
One of the most common reasons for people not traveling more often is that travel is expensive. You might want to travel to a foreign tropical island paradise, for example, on a shoestring budget. Your travel agent can suggest a domestic sunny location, which gives you longer vacation options on your budget.
Kid-friendly travel is much easier with using a travel agent.
There are many challenges to traveling with children, especially young children. Travel agents can help you to deal with these problems. Remember, they book trips for families all of the time. Along the same lines, they can also help solve problems traveling with pets, senior citizens, or disabled individuals.
When your travel plans change, a travel agent can help you deal with these problems.
Things do not always go as planned. When this happens and you have reserved the various portions of your trip by yourself, you have dozens of calls to make, changing dates and trying to save as much money as possible. When working with a travel agent, you only have one call to make. Better yet, the travel agent might be able to get your dates of travel changed or get you a partial refund whereas alone, you might have simply lost the money.
You have a single bill to pay with a travel agent.
Instead of making a ton of small purchases with multiple receipts, confirmation and reservation numbers, you will have one big bill to pay. Better yet, most travel agents have payment plans, in which you pay a certain amount each month until your date of travel. They might even have financing plans to make things easier. With a travel agent, vacations can be stress-free from a financial perspective, on top of all of the planning perks.
Using a travel agent, online or in-person, to plan and reserve your next vacation has many advantages over doing it yourself. You do not have to go it alone to save time and money. In fact, not using a travel agent can cost you more dollars and headache than you would have had you chosen the services of an experienced travel agent.