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Is it best to book directly with resorts & airlines than with travel companies or agencies?

Is it best to book directly with resorts & airlines than with travel companies or agencies?

Old Apr 21st, 2002, 12:53 PM
  #1  
lara
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Is it best to book directly with resorts & airlines than with travel companies or agencies?

I'm planning my family's summer vacation to the Caribbean & have used travel agents in the past only to be dissappointed upon our vacation arrival because I feel like they almost try to sell a package that sounds good & looks good, but when you get there it's not what you thought it was. I've been doing some searching on the internet & wonder if I should book directly with hotels & airlines or go to travel websites for package deals. Although, some of the travel sites don't offer hotels that I like in their packages. How do most of you book your vacations?
 
Old Apr 21st, 2002, 01:48 PM
  #2  
blue eyes
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My personal view is its always better to book with an agent because you can get the benefit of their ABTA(Association of British Travel Agents Not sure about U.S. though) bond.This is a guarentee to you that if your hotel or airline goes bust its their job to sort it out not yours...It may sometimes work out more expensive to do it this way but at the end of the day its worth it to get that guarentee....
Hope this helps
 
Old Apr 21st, 2002, 04:59 PM
  #3  
Trish
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I've done it both ways and seem to have better luck on my own. I have tried different agents and different companies and it seems like when I've used an agent, they've dropped the ball on details, or I've ended up correcting problems myself. Also, none have ever been to places I'm going. I get all my information on forums, so why not do it yourself if you have the time?
 
Old Apr 21st, 2002, 06:05 PM
  #4  
tina
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I get a price quote from a travel agent or a travel company then I do some research and if I can beat their price, which usually happens, I booked it myself.
 
Old Apr 22nd, 2002, 01:24 AM
  #5  
fiona
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I research places first and then phone several companies directly for quotes and also ask an agent for a quote.We used an agent for our recent Barbados holiday( £1000 saving on the holiday on "brochure" price)The last time we went I saved a fortune by booking directly with the company. So, there is no one better way- just do your research for each holiday!
 
Old Apr 22nd, 2002, 03:09 AM
  #6  
hmmmmm
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It's a matter of personal preference I think. Have used a travel agent for some trips and not used a travel agent for others. Most important is to do some research on your own before you book anywhwere. If a travel suggests a particular resort, it's up to you to get your own opinion on it. A resort a travel agent would suggest to you very likely worked for his/her other clients in the past. I don't believe a travel agent would suggest a bad place. Ultimately it wouldn't reflect well on that travel agent if you were sent to a bad place! Be clear as to what your expectations are, do some research, and be an informed traveler.
 
Old Apr 22nd, 2002, 06:31 AM
  #7  
clarice
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You can almost always get a better deal directly by calling a hotel or dealing over the net, EXCEPT at high season when they don't need to negotiate. If you use a travel agent be sure to use one who has clout with the particular hotel you are going to be staying at to get you the best rooms, etc. Regarding airlines, there are so many rules and regulations that travel agents can help alot. However, if you call the airline directly and repeatedly, you will get quoted different fares and availability all the time for the same routes. I do not think most travel agents have time to keep checking the way you can on your own. A more senior reservations person with an airline will really push and find you amazing routes and fares that a less experienced person will. The trick is, calling DURING THE BUSINESS DAY when you get the more senior people, not off hours when they are at home and the newbies are manning the phones. If you don't like what an airline tells you, hang up and call back and many times a different agent will give you a different answer.
 
Old Apr 22nd, 2002, 07:05 AM
  #8  
linda
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I always book my own and get great deals. Since you mentioned summer vacations, you will find many "internet only" specials for many places. I did last year in the BVI, and we got upgraded once we got there because it was low season!Start looking!
 
Old Apr 22nd, 2002, 07:25 AM
  #9  
Traveller
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Most definitely we get better rates through travel agent than dealing directly with a hotel. Our agent will even call us when a better deal comes up! Hotels and airlines won't do that.
 
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