Online booking platforms and on-the-go apps are considered a convenient way to find the best flight, hotel and rental car options. However, travel agents are still a thriving industry. Choosing a travel agent instead of booking online even has distinct advantages in many cases.
Your travel agent is experienced.
Even if you’re a seasoned traveler, you’ve likely only booked a few dozen trips. Your neighborhood travel agent has planned hundreds, if not thousands, of successful vacations and business trips. Lean on their experience and knowledge beyond flights and hotel reservations. A good travel agent will be able to answer all your questions about the destination, as well as make restaurant reservations, schedule tours and museum visits, and help you with a visa application.
A travel agent can also find you a deal.
One reason people choose to book online is the perception of the great deal they’re getting. Let you travel agent know if price is most important to you while traveling so they can find you the best value. When a travel agent compares flights and accommodations, they take into account the fine print and extra fees, which are sometime hidden on online booking sites.
Travel agents are excellent problem solvers.
For simple trips, booking a flight and hotel yourself is manageable. For longer, more complicated trips, enlisting the help of a travel agent can help you make the most of your time.
Getting creative with scheduling and transportation methods is one advantage of travel agents. Searching a website that specializes in booking flights won’t let you know that the fastest, most cost-effective way between two cities is actually an express bus or high-speed train. Independent lodging in small towns that provide a great experience probably aren’t listed on the online hotel comparison website either.
If your trip hits an unplanned snag, you can easily contact your travel agent to help reschedule a cancelled flight. Otherwise, you’re left haggling with an airline agent who may not speak your language.
You can save time with a travel agent.
Comparing trip details in multiple browser windows can be time consuming and frustrating. A travel agent does this research for you, presenting you with just a few options based on what is most important to you.
Your travel agent will also read all the fine print of the trip you book, saving you time and possibly hassle later on.