The increase of awareness about different destinations all around the world has led to an increase in people who want to travel, and it has also increased the number of DIY (do it yourself) travelers that are using online methods to secure tickets and bookings. In fact, the use of travel agents has decreased over the years, and now less than 10 percent of people use them when booking destinations, even in other countries, according to a research firm within the industry.
However, the truth is that using an experienced travel agent carries numerous advantages. If you are travelling to a different country, it can prove daunting to plan all your activities because you hardly know the place. Planning a trip is good, but it is a tiring process.
Imagine you have to know where to begin your searching process of accommodation options, user reviews, and places to go. You also need to know the cost of all your hidden expenses, such as passports, visas like if you are getting a Uganda visa or whether your country has restrictions to certain countries, and then knowing all the non-refundable aspects of your cost analysis.
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A travel agent advises you accordingly
Travel agents in the past did not do much other than assisting you to book accommodation in the country you were heading to. However, the travel agents of today do much more than that, because they take up the role of travel advisors now.
That means when you sign up with them, they can help you sort out numerous amounts of information to help you reach an informed decision. This is similar to the role that a financial advisor plays, because they help their clients to manage their money effectively. For instance, when you are booking a flight, they can advise you on the best ones to book, where to sit, the layover you would like, and so on – based on the preferences you have. It takes away the stress of trying to decide everything on your own.
Why should you use a travel adviser?
Many people use travel agents today as a form of personal service, according to the travel agency research firm PhoCusWright (almost 35 percent of them). Other reasons can include:
*You are not an expert in the travel field
Unless you have a job within the travel industry and you have gone to very many destinations, you cannot know most of the things you can experience. Because they have extensive experience in different aspects of travel though, a travel agent can give ideas and alert you about thing you may not have thought of.
Some of them will happen to be generalists while others are specialists in specific niches, including multigenerational travel, specific countries, or in cruise travel. They will have extensive information on each of their lines of specialization, and they can help you book great spots when traveling or suggesting excellent spots for you to hang out.
*You want to make sure you do not suffer mishaps in your trip
Not all trips are created equal, and some will be more difficult to handle than others. For instance, going to a different country will have more complications in the details you need to take care of, compared to going to a different town within your home country. Sometimes you may even be planning a special trip to commemorate something, such as going for your honeymoon or planning a birthday getaway.
These are situations where you do not want things to go wrong and ruin the experience you have, so a travel agent can help you iron out all the details. They can also inform you about the English-proficient guides you can use during your journey.
*You likely do not have the connections they have
The good thing about travel agencies is that they are a collection of travel agents who have different experiences in the industry, and all of the agents under them know numerous people within the industry. Because of their large numbers, they can negotiate and get unusual benefits on behalf of all the clients under them.
A good example would be the travel agency, Virtuoso travelers, which has a collection of 340 agencies, and almost 9,000 travel agents spread out in 20 countries. Because of this, they can secure great deals with any hotel and get the best accommodation for their clients, get exclusive spa credits and complimentary breakfasts, and so on. When you decide to sign up with them as their client, you stand to get all these benefits, without breaking your bank account balance.
*You do not have much time to waste
The truth remains that organizing a trip and researching the places you should go takes much time and perseverance. And the whole process can easily overwhelm you when you are not sure of what to do. For instance, even getting plane tickets is a struggle if you are working in ordinary circumstances, not to mention the cost of renewing your passport and other transport fees.
The case gets even worse when there are problems occurring with the airline, such as in the event of a major storm, when their website crashes, or during the holidays (major peak season). Your waiting time before you sort everything out is longer, and you may not even get through to them anyway.
*You will need a safety net when anything goes wrong
Anything can happen during a trip, and you need to keep that in mind always. These incidences can include the cancellation of a flight, pilfering of a passport you fall sick on the journey, or you lose part of your luggage. Save yourself the stress of seeing things not work out the way you wanted by working with a travel agency.
They will give you a safety net just in case anything goes wrong, and will give you alternatives in case your option fails to work out.
Traveling is a stressful process when you do not know what to do and where to go, but a travel agency can help you smoothen the process and make your experience more enjoyable.
Have you worked with a travel agent?
Share your thoughts and comments with us.