Are Travel Agents Becoming Obsolete?

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Nov 16th, 1997, 01:34 AM
  #1
Jenni
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Are Travel Agents Becoming Obsolete?

I just read the posting from someone having trouble with her travel agent and I am running into the same circumstances booking a trip to Rome. With all of the research I have done for this trip, I am finding that I know more than the travel agents that I am calling for help. I have pretty much decided to book it myself (and all future trips as well.) I remember my parents ALWAYS using a travel agent. Is it possible to find a good one? How? At the risk of offending someone, I wonder with the internet if they are just becoming obsolete.
 
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Nov 16th, 1997, 10:32 PM
  #2
Jody
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I have no idea whether travel agents are becoming obsolete, but would definitely say that the level of service they provide has diminished enormously over the years. Remember when the folks working in a fabric store actually knew something about sewing? I, personally, would love to know where to find the "reliable travel agent" mentioned in all of the tour guides. Nowadays, it seems they book you on any flight in any hotel and go onto the next thing. For example, when we were planning our trip to Paris, the agent initially booked us on US Air. Why fly US Air when you can fly Air France for the same price? She was unwilling to find out any details for us, such as whether or not we would be able to cash travellers checks at the front desk of the hotel (we could). Always go with your instincts. If you feel the agent is not servicing you properly for any reason, get another one, or book your travel yourself. The last time I visited a travel agency, I patiently explained our requirements for an upcoming trip to Europe. I already knew which airline, flights, hotel, dates and so forth. After listening to me for a few minutes she said, "We're closing in five minutes. Could you come back some other time?" She didn't even bother to take my name and phone number or give me a business card.
 
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Nov 29th, 1997, 11:21 AM
  #3
jls
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I agree that the need for travel agents is disappearing. The Internet, travel guides and television shows (i.e Travels in Europe with Rick Steves) provide enough information for you to plan your own trip. I also have had a bad experience with a travel agent. I find that it makes more sense to arrange things myself. After all, it is your trip and your money.
 
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Nov 29th, 1997, 11:22 AM
  #4
jls
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I agree that the need for travel agents is disappearing. The Internet, travel guides and television shows (i.e Travels in Europe with Rick Steves) provide enough information for you to plan your own trip. I also have had a bad experience with a travel agent. I find that it makes more sense to arrange things myself. After all, it is your trip and your money.
 
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Dec 12th, 1997, 07:16 PM
  #5
JUDY
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I agree that there are some pretty incompetent travel agents and agencies around. I have been a travel agent for 15 years and cringe when I think about my novice years...very little training or knowledge. I now work for an agency owned by a bank and specialize in international travel. There are two of us who only do intenational travel and between us have 30 years experience. I sincerely believe if you find an agent with good experience you will save much time, aggravation and money.
 
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