Fodor's Travel Talk Forums

Fodor's Travel Talk Forums (
-   Cruises (
-   -   Transferring a Booking to a Travel Agent (

Linda3011 Jun 17th, 2019 08:28 AM

Transferring a Booking to a Travel Agent
After hours and days of looking for a cruise we finally decided on a Viking cruise, booked through Viking then we received an email form a Travel Agent who I'd previously contacted about booking the same cruise but then we decided to go through Viking, the TA tells me that if I transfer my Viking booking over to them them then I will receive OBC as a thank you.....has anybody ever done this and would it be worth it??

whitehall Jun 17th, 2019 08:41 AM

I haven't done it, but have cruised with others who have. It is my understanding that all cruise lines allow this option, out of deference to travel agents, but some may not allow it once the final payment has been made. The obvious benefit of booking with SOME TA's is that SOME have better rates (and incentives) than the cruise line offers. Cruise lines prefer not to lower the perceived value of a cruise (so they leave much of the discounting to TA's, especially the larger national companies). We have used cruise as a way to get bids from a few of those larger companies who participate, and it has worked out well in the past. I personally would not use a TA for booking any type of travel in this digital age, but sometimes, as in this case, they might be able to provide a perk. I can see zero negatives with the switch except that, if you want to switch cabins, for example, you will have to go through a middleman to get it accomplished.

chepar Jun 18th, 2019 08:40 AM

I always use to get bids on a cruise I'm planning. But first I do a lot of research on the cruise line's website and have all their information on pricing for the different cabin categories so when I get the various bids in, I know I'm comparing apples to apples to see if I'm really getting a deal or not.

I've booked a number of cruises through a large TA that I've gotten bids through and each time I've been offered OBC, a free cabin upgrade and/or other perks. Sometimes my family does multigenerational family trips - last year a group of us did a Baltic cruise. I bid/booked the cruise for all of us through and the large TA that I've found usually gives me the best prices.

But as noted above, some TAs offer better rates than others. My mother uses her own TA and for the Baltic cruise we all took last year wanted to see if she could match the bid being offered by TA I had obtained through The prices were not even close - but I attribute it to the fact that the TA I received the bid from was a very large agency specializing in cruises that probably by volume alone can offer the perks they do.

I don't see a downside in switching to the TA, but I would find out if they're charging you a booking fee that might negate some of the OBC you'd be receiving. Also I guess it would depend on how much the OBC was - if it was just a small amount I might decide it wasn't worth the hassle.

jacketwatch Jun 18th, 2019 10:23 AM

Yes you can, no worries. In fact when we were on a Royal cruise we booked another onboard and they transferred the booking to my TA right then and there.

worldinabag Jun 19th, 2019 08:05 PM


The only downside with transferring your booking to an agent is that you can no longer deal with the cruise company direct. So any issues like cabin, meal times, itinerary changes etc. will need to be addressed through your TA. If your confident your agent is professional and responds promptly to your concerns you may well get a better deal with your TA.

fmpden Jun 22nd, 2019 06:16 PM

We use Costco travel a lot for cruises. When we deduct the cash rebates we receive afterwards nothing bets their prices. We don't get OBC but that really is just a discount and it is the total final price that counts.

jacketwatch Jun 23rd, 2019 06:54 AM

Originally Posted by fmpden (Post 16940900)
We use Costco travel a lot for cruises. When we deduct the cash rebates we receive afterwards nothing bets their prices. We don't get OBC but that really is just a discount and it is the total final price that counts.

Ok if you are a member.
However we used to use Costco for our vacations and yes then the prices were the best, by far in some case. .
We primarily cruise now and use an excellent TA. We do pay a bit more but the service is great.
Though it is seldom sometimes we get great air from the consolidator her agency uses. For example we got biz ORD-NRT and full insurance for our trip for $500.00 less than I was seeing for just the air alone.

gbelle1 Jun 23rd, 2019 02:12 PM

Is this for a Viking river cruise or ocean cruise?
Aren't the river cruises supposed to be relatively "all inclusive." If so, what would you use OBC for?

whitehall Jun 23rd, 2019 02:15 PM

It is an ocean cruise. River cruises don't go to Barcelona and Rome. :)

Linda3011 Jul 2nd, 2019 12:55 AM

It’s an ocean cruise, use OBC to upgrade drinks package, extra excursions, spa etc

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 03:18 PM.