Travel Agents – The Value They Provide

Most Internet “surfers” are of the volition that online travel websites are the cheapest means to book travel.  This is not necessarily so. 

Travel professionals who tap into the right resources will have a plethora of information at their fingertips.  They are constantly receiving updated promotions from the various suppliers they use.  Besides if the “surfer” finds a great price on a vacation package, the travel professional with the help of his suppliers, can meet and/or sometimes beat the pricing by a few dollars.  If you were traveling, wouldn’t you want to be able to call and speak with and possibly meet with the travel consultant you’re working with?

Utilizing the skills of a travel consultant will certainly provide you the most “bang for your buck” in my humble opinion.  Granted there are some who are more skilled than others, but isn’t that something you’ll find in any field (ex:  accountant, attorneys, doctors).  While you might perhaps consider getting a second opinion from these professionals, why not do the same when researching for a qualified travel agent.  There are several ways of doing so.  While surfing the Internet is the easiest means of locating a travel consultant, one should do due diligence about finding out about this person’s credibility.  Why not make an appointment to meet with one!  If they’re not amenable to meeting with you to interview, then it might be a strong possibility that this person who is calling themself a professional, very well may turn out to be one who does so for a hobby. 

Most travel professionals pride themselves that they are educated in their field and receive a designation (or credentialing) from the Travel Institute.  If a travel consultant has a designation, it is a pretty good indication that they are serious about their profession.  Designations include CTA, CTC, MCC, to name a few and.  These would appear after the travel consultant’s name.

Another key indication that the person they would want to assist you with your travel arrangements, is to go to some of the supplier websites (i.e. Sandals, Beaches, Royal Caribbean, Princess).  Some, not all, suppliers will have a “travel agent locator” on their website and if you search the zip code, the travel professional’s name will appear if they have taken extensive courses with the help of their travel supplier.  Please know, however, that this is not the case with all suppliers.  

Once the traveler has identified a true travel professional, they have a friend for life who will want to share their own personal experiences with.