I appreciate what a travel agent does but...
I prefer to maintain control over my vacations.
Believe it or not, agents prefer that too. Our job is that much easier when a client wants to have some control over their activities. It makes our job that much easier when a client knows what they want, knows where they want to stay, and want they want from their vacation. You are probably thinking to yourself that if is this is the case why should I even use a travel agent. Just like using a real estate agent gives you someone to pull for you in the real estate market, a travel agent gives you pull in the huge travel market. For example, you might know you want to go to Jamaica and where in Jamaica you want to go but an agent can help you determine which type of resort is best for you depending on your group, your wants, and your budget. A travel agent is there to help guide you in the right direction. In addition, even if you want to maintain control of your trip there might be issues that come up that are out of your control. An agent can help you through all of this. Rather than having a 1-800 number to call of some booking company that knows nothing about you, you can call your agent who knows everything about you and your booking. An agent can then work to resolve the situation so that you don’t have to. Travel agents have points of contacts at resorts, airlines, travel insurance companies, and tour companies, In addition, if your agent does not know the answer they know someone that does. There is a huge support network for travel agents to get questions answered and needs addressed.
My budget does not accommodate using a travel agent.
I think this is the biggest misconception about using a travel agent. In most instances, it does not cost you anything extra. With the exception of very personalized trips, you never pay the agent directly. The agent is instead paid by the vendor whether it be the resort, tour company, etc... In other words, if an agent books you a Disney vacation you don’t pay the agent Disney does. Even better, it is the same cost to you if you use an agent or not. If that is the case why not use an agent. It is more or less getting their service for free. Even instances where clients are able to find better pricing on Expedia, Cheap Caribbean, and Southwest Vacations a travel agent can in most instances match that pricing. In addition, an agent will be one of the first people to know about special vacation pricing and can in most instances get that for their clients before it is open to the general public. Believe it or not, most of the time a travel agent can find you pricing better than the online companies when comparing apples to apples. Some travel agents do charge service fees but Harrigan Holidays does not.
My trip needs aren’t big enough for what a travel agent does.
Agents book all kinds of trips whether is a 1 night hotel stay during that soccer tournament, a weeklong trip to the shore, a trip to Disney, a cruise, an all-inclusive resort, or customized trips through Europe. The options really are endless. Most people associate travel agents with the all-inclusive resort vacation and big trips but agents can also be an great tool when booking just a standard hotel stay or renting a car. Agents have networks that sometimes have amazing hotel pricing at most major hotels and the majority of small hotels. Even if the pricing itself is the same, it will many times include additional perks that you would not get with the rack rate. Even on the small trips, agents love helping their clients. The more an agent works with you the better they are able to meet your needs. In addition, even if you don’t need a hotel but have some sites you want to see while visiting a city an agent can help with that. Often, agents can find discounted rates on show tickets, sightseeing sites, tour buses, and even walking tours.
My trip needs are too customized.
These are the trips agents dream of. It is when all of their training finally comes to use. Agents love planning those once in a lifetime trips and will do everything in their power to make it amazing. When you work with a travel agent you have someone their to think of your every need. You might have a general idea of what you want but have no idea where to start. Give a travel agent a call and they will get the ball rolling. They can take that trip you envision in your head and make it happen. Just as no trip is to small, no trip is too big. In addition, using a travel agent for those once in a lifetime trips will help to address every issue that you might not have thought of whether it be making sure you have transportation to that late night sightseeing tour you have planned, making sure a bathroom or rest break is planned as needed, even making sure that you have the correct electrical converters and money needed.
People have a set stereotype of what a travel agent is but in most instances it is far from reality. A travel agent can help you with any type of trip and will willingly help you. We are your go to person for any problems that occur during the trip. We will listen to your trip needs and be sure to address all concerns you have. Where you may think that using a travel agent is giving up an element of control, if anything it is gaining even more control. It gives you someone that can handle anything that goes on with your trip.