Travel agent for trip to Greece

Old Mar 26th, 2008, 05:13 PM
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Travel agent for trip to Greece

Can any of you Fodorites recommend an experienced in travel to Greece travel agent in the Chicago area, preferably Northwest suburbs.
Thanks!
alevi5 is offline  
Old Mar 26th, 2008, 05:49 PM
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Can't you do it yourself? I went to Thessaloniki, Athens, and Rodos this summer and I booked the entire trip myself over the Internet.

I haven't used a travel agent in 10 years and I have travelled all over the world.

Thingorjus
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Old Mar 26th, 2008, 06:04 PM
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For what its worth, I've never used a travel agent either. This summer I'm adding a side-trip to Italy during my annual trip to Greece and I've booked a plane, hotel, and tours online.

Get yourself a good, up to date travel book (I prefer the Rough Guide and Lonely Planet books for DIY travellers) and start reading away. I find that half the fun of travelleing is doing the research and prepping for it.

Besides, if you have any specific questions there are great boards like this one where experienced travelers can help you out.

Best of luck,

PL
spartakos is offline  
Old Mar 26th, 2008, 06:26 PM
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There might be a reason the OP does want a agent. In any event, alevi5, let us know why you would like to work with one; there are still good ones out there.
I agree many trips can certainly be planned yourdself, but perhaps there are very special things you desire, require, etc. So let us know.

If you really want an agent, a friend of mine is an agent for Greece and is actually listed in Conde Nast Magazine as one of the top Greece experts. We became good friends after she helped plan a large group trip for me to Greece.

In my case, we were traveling with about 16 friends and I needed an agent so I was not responsible for all the logistics.

Anyway, her name is Ronnie Liadis and she can be reached at 1-800--liadis1. She is in PA, near Philly.
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Old Mar 26th, 2008, 06:57 PM
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Playing devil's advocate here...

I used to be a travel agent, so I know that if you find a good one, he or she can be very helpful, especially if you are not the type who wants to spend hours planning your own trip. You could always call a few agencies, ask if they have someone who is very knowlegeable about Greece, see if there are charges for an initial consultation, and go for an appointment. Then decide whether or not you want to utilize their services, either for part of the planning and booking process or for all. You could also do some research on your own, see if you then feel comfortable proceding on your own or if you want to get some help. Then, you'd have some background information and could provide more direction to the agent as to what you're looking for, or at least would feel more in-the-know as the discussion proceeded.

Agents usually charge fees for booking airline tickets and for planning detailed travel itineraries. Since they do get commissions on tour packages, hotels, car rentals, etc., there may not be additional fees charged for some of those products. In many cases, the price you pay is the same, whether or not you book it through an agent. Sometimes, an agent can find deals and prices that would take you a long time to find, or are not available direct to the client. On the other hand, sometimes you can find lower prices if you take the time to research carefully yourself. If you do book it all yourself, keep detailed records of anything you book, inquiring about what's included, cancellation penalties, change fees, etc.

You can go to the bookstore or library and look at all the guidebook choices. Choose the ones you think would be valuable to bring along or use for in-depth planning. Along with Lonely Planet and Rough Guide, there's Rick Steves, Let's Go, Frommer's, Fodor's, Insight, and DK Eyewitness, and more.

Greece is great...have fun!
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Old Mar 26th, 2008, 08:42 PM
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You could also use a Greek agent. I booked a good part of my trip to Greece myself, but I also used Fantasy Travel in Athens for one ferry and a few hotels. I found them on Matt Barrett's excellent website (www.greektravel.com) - a great place for research.
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Old Mar 26th, 2008, 09:00 PM
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I haven't used an agent in many years, with the internet there is no reason to anymore, unless as some posters mentioned you are doing group travel, or really can't spare anytime to do it yourself.
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