Travel agents are trained to understand and analyse their client’s needs and wants; they are often best placed to help a client truly understand what it is they want from a holiday and are skilled in helping them come to this realisation themselves.
It’s important that travel agents understand the drivers and decision making processes behind holiday selection; that’s why the best of them are so thorough and ask lots of questions. Don’t be alarmed by this; it’s the sign of a good agent.
In this day and age of online travel stores, it can really pay to go back to the old fashioned approach of a face to face meeting when booking your holiday. Here are some of the reasons why people choose to book their holiday through a travel agent.
The Best Options at the Best Prices
Yes price is important, but customers are looking for the whole package; the best overall solution to their holiday wants and needs. Travel agents can provide this by carrying out a detailed qualification and needs assessment analysis at the start of the appointment. They’ll want to know dates, the quality of accommodation required, amenities required, cancellation policy preference, number of children, etc. This will enable them to suggest the best destinations for you and your family.
And of course this will help you get the best price too; but you’ll be able to choose between the best price at a number of different destinations. It’s not all about price, but a good agent will find multiple good deals for you and not just return the cheapest option.
Value for Money
Which leads us on nicely to the next benefit – value for money. Let’s face it, if the hotel is not right, the golf course is too shabby, or the entertainment is too lame, customers soon forget about the extra money that was saved. Customers want to feel like they have got a deal, but with a travel agent you have more control over the quality of the deal you’re getting.
The cheapest option isn’t always the best and a good agent will be able to tell you which deal is the best value for money, as opposed to the one that might just save you a little extra.
Going back to the needs analysis we talked about earlier, because your agent has spent the time doing this upfront and getting to know your preferences, they can suggest added extras which can enhance the value of the package on offer. Yes this is going to cost a little bit more, but think of the tailored value you’re getting; you aren’t compromising on the type of holiday that you desire and you’re getting exactly what you want at a price that you’re comfortable with. This is true value.
Knowing the Product on Offer
Product knowledge is one of the key advantages of using a travel agent. Their level of insight is something you just can’t get online or via a search engine and this alone makes the trip to a agent worth the time and effort.
Travel agents are trained continuously in the packages and holidays they have on offer and this makes them best placed to help you find your ideal holiday. Often certain travel agents specialise in specific types of holidays or destinations. If you know where you want to go or what sort of holiday it is that you’re looking for specifically then you could search for an appropriate niche holiday provider.
One indication of a quality travel agent who knows their products is some form of professional accreditation. This shows that they have gone to the effort of getting registered and making sure that their practice is of a high and consistent standard. Look out for the following types of accreditation: CTC, CTA, DS, MCC or ACC.
Security and Safety
Let’s face it, we live in a dangerous world and travellers’ heightened anxieties around security and safety are well founded given the events of the last fifteen years or so. A good travel agent will be able to update you on any safety concerns regarding the area you are going to travel to and will be able to advise on any do’s and don’ts when you’re out there.
As well as things like terrorism it’s important to know about naturally occurring hazards and things like freak weather. Any travel agent worth their salt will be able to give you sound advice around these tricky subjects.
Health and safety is another concern, particularly when traveling to a foreign country. Travel agents will know the safety records of the hotels they use and any which fall below the required standards won’t be used again. This provides peace of mind to any traveller booking through an agent.
A Huge Time Saver
Time is precious and, as the saying goes, time is money! You might think that visiting a travel agent is more time consuming than booking online, but in reality it’s a time saver. Getting that highly personalised service means that you’ll actually find your ideal destination quicker than if you spend time trawling the internet yourself for the perfect match.
Again, we’re going back to the agent taking the time to get to know what you want and using their expert knowledge to match you up to the perfect holiday. This is worth the journey to the office, please be assured of that!
The piece of mind you get by going through an agent is a lot more reassuring than booking via another means; to get that level of assurance yourself is going to take far more time and effort on your part. You’ve got to compare prices, check independent reviews, sort flights out, book extras (if you even can) and do a whole host of other things too. Trust me when I say using a travel agent is a much simpler process.
So there you have it; some compelling reasons why travel agents matter! They really are an absolute must if you want to get the best out of your holiday!
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