In today's digitally driven world, it may seem unnecessary to work with a travel agent to book your next trip abroad. But before you click away to start comparing flights, we want to make the case that a travel agent might be a tool in your travel arsenal that you don't want to disregard!
Working with a professional travel agent can help you experience the world in a new way, and often their expertise can help you avoid some of the frustrations many of us experience with booking and going through our travel plans along the way.
If you're thinking of booking an upcoming trip, here are some of the best ways to work with a travel agent to ensure your next vacation is the best it can be.
Paying For Expertise Can Help You Save
While it may seem counterintuitive to pay someone to help you save money, a travel agent has a skillset that is geared to help you do exactly that. While you may feel that using a travel agent is simply paying for the convenience of not booking travel yourself, they also have industry knowledge that can help you take advantage of insider deals like upgrades, hard-to-book destinations and popular attractions that are tough for the average traveler going at it solo to find.
Since many agents are members of larger travel networks, it means they have visibility and connections that can help you book the vacation of your dreams without the frustrations of trying to negotiate them yourself. Agents in larger association networks have access to cool perks and unique offerings for clients. Often, upgrades like free breakfasts, Wi-Fi and better rates for larger accommodations are just a bonus of booking with an agent.
Plus, there is something to be said about the value of your time. If you're crunched for time or find the various options in booking to be dizzying and not exciting, working with an agent can save you several hours in trip planning and they can handle your entire experience from A to Z.
Agents save you time, from conducting research on your destination to booking rental cars, tours and flights, They can also can sprinkle in the extra touches -- like champagne when you get there!
Avoiding Costly Mistakes And Delays
Time is precious, and if your next winter vacation has little room for error (or a plan-altering snow storm) working with a travel agent can help you sidestep some of the most common frustrations that arise when you're traveling somewhere and you can't afford to miss a day.
Travel agents know which airports experience frequent weather-related problems, and which are located in the most ideal hub locations for a quick-to-implement plan B, should a problem arise. Using a travel agent can help you have a trick in your back pocket should something come up, like a delayed flight, bad weather or unexpected life event.
Planning For Long Term Goals Beyond Short Term Trips
While your first thought may be to use a travel agent solely for your most immediate needs, a travel agent can also help you plan and curate a long-term travel plan that will help you strategically cross items off your bucket list in an order that saves you time and money.
For most of us with big plans to see the world, it can be a challenge to know what country to do when, and how to pace our visits over the course of years. If you dream big and want a long-term plan for travel, a guide to help you strategize and balance a plethora of bucket list trips from hot air ballooning in New Mexico to taking a Viking River Cruise in Europe or even a safari in Africa, establishing a relationship with a travel agent can be wise.
Together, you can plan for the next trip and for the next five to ensure you don't run out of time or money along the way. Additionally, a travel agent can factor in other metrics that make your trip perfect -- like weighing the best times of year to visit, or setting your timeline around other rare events that could impact your travel, like the World Cup, the Olympics or political instability. A good travel agent can make the impossible possible -- step by step.
So, whether you want to attend the Olympics in your lifetime or avoid it like the plague, a skilled travel agent can help you craft a long-term travel strategy that will make your bucket list of travel destinations a reality, instead of making it feel like a herculean task.