You've heard about travel agents, you probably even see posts and mentions of them often, but you still hesitate about using a travel agent for your vacation. Here are some of the more common questions and myths I hear about using a travel agent. If you have more questions that aren't on this list, please reach out and I'd be happy to answer your questions.
Myth 1: Travel Agents are expensive Not true. In fact, travel agents love to save you money and sometimes your trip will be less expensive through a travel agent. Travel agents are usually paid commission by the tour companies, hotels, and cruise lines - and you're paying the same amount that you would pay if you booked with the cruise line (or hotel or tour company) directly. They don't charge you more when you use a travel agent, they pay commission to the agent - in fact, some cruise lines will only let you book through a travel agent. And before you ask - a good travel agent would never steer you towards a particular cruise line or tour based on the commission - we want you to be happy so that you book with us again and tell your friends about us too! Myth 2: I Don't Need A Travel Agent Because I Have The Internet Not true! Travel agents add a personal touch that you won't find on the internet. You can research all you want on the internet, but when it comes to booking, don't lose the personal touch of a travel agent. Most people I talk to don't realize that online booking sites are actually travel agents - they get paid commission just the same way that I would, but when you book with them you're just a number. There are so many customer service horror stories about booking online through these websites. When you book with an individual travel agent like Keepsake Travel Designs, you become part of our family. We are always here to help you with your vacation, from before you book until after you get home. Myth 3: Travel Agents Are Just Trying to Rip Me Off Not true. Travel agents can book the same deal that the cruise line is offering, and sometimes have exclusive deals and packages that aren't available elsewhere. If I show you a flight that is more expensive than what you found online, ask me why - it's probably going to be because of the routing, layovers, times, etc. I want you to enjoy your vacation and not risk a layover in the snow on your way to paradise. If cost is your top priority, let me know at the beginning and I will make sure that you get the cheapest option as well. Sometimes people are worried that if they give me a budget, I'll add things in to hit the max they're willing to spend - again, not true. I need a budget so that I know what you're looking to spend so that we can realistically plan and that you're happy with the vacation that you're taking.
Myth 4: All Travel Agents Are The Same Not true, most travel agents specialize in different things. It doesn't mean that I can't help you if it's not my area of expertise, if it's something that I'm not comfortable booking, I can give you information on an amazing travel agent that can help you. Travel agents specialize because it allows us to be experts on specific things - giving you better information and service on your vacation.
Myth 5: No One Uses A Travel Agent Anymore Not true. According to ASTA (American Society of Travel Agents), travel agents sell 87% of cruises, 81% of tours and packages, and 47% of all hotels. So why are people using travel agents? The same study showed that travel agents save clients an average of almost $500 per trip - and save them least 4 hours in planning time. So if the added customer service and personal touch isn't enough for you to consider using a travel agent, maybe the idea of saving money and time will help. Ready to plan a trip? We offer free planning sessions, and would be happy to meet with you on the phone to see if we can help you with your vacation!