HOW TRAVEL AGENTS WORK?
You have spent endless hours surfing the web and are overwhelmed with “to good to be true” hotel websites. When you asked around at work, everyone had a different must-do vacation idea. You have so much information that you start thinking it might be easier just to stay home. Then you begin to wonder how Travel Agents work.
A Travel Agent who specializes in your destination of choice can be an amazing guide because they know how to match you with the right destination and the right resort based on your criteria. A great Travel Agent has in-depth knowledge of the destinations they represent, they know the lay of the land, and draw on a broad base of experience to guide you to your ideal vacation.
BUT I LIKE TO PLAN MY OWN TRAVEL…
Agents aren’t here to take the planning away from you. They are available to work with you to create a better version of the vacation you are imagining. Great Travel Agents are there to assist with your reservations and they know the best ways to elevate your trip. Your Agent can provide destination information and recommend experiences that most people don’t even know about. For instance, they have on-the-ground contacts who they’ve trusted to take care of their clients for years. They know tricks of the trade and want to share these with you.
“Time and time again our clients rave about the knowledge of our seasoned travel professionals. Many of our repeat clients become more like family because we take the time to get to know them and we always their best interests in mind,” says Jennifer Byrne, CEO of The Tropical Travelers.
HOW ARE TRAVEL AGENTS PAID?
Plain and simple, resorts pay Travel Agents a commission after you travel. Vacation Travel Agents create packages for their clients and are compensated by the hotels for doing so. In some cases, specialized Travel Agents will charge up-front fees for travel such as Destination Wedding planning, multi-stop entailed European travel, etc. But generally, Travel Agents are paid solely on commission, much like a realtor. This is why it’s important to follow through and book with your Travel Agent who has generously provided information and trip pricing up front.
How do I find a great Travel Agent?
Start local. Google “Travel Agents Near Me” and do some research on the options that you find. You may find a local Travel Agent who specializes in exactly what you are looking for. Referrals from friends is also a great resource. If your friends had a great experience, ask them about the process.
Once you do find a Travel Agent you’d like to consider, set up a time to talk and make sure they are a good fit for your travel style. Even after a few minutes of conversation, you should be able to determine if they have a passion for the destination and experiences that interest you most.