US Travel Agencies (Dallas, to be exact)

May 7th, 2014, 10:37 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 119
US Travel Agencies (Dallas, to be exact)

Ok, so a lot of people on this forum talk about 'travel agents' and even on my last group trip, most of the other travelers had booked through a travel agent. I remember my parents had a travel agent pre-internet, but now no one does!

I feel like in many countries I have visited, there are travel agencies EVERYWHERE, whereas in the US, there are few, if any, to be found.

I am wanting to book a trip to SE Asia, but would really like to sit down face to face and book something, but I am lost as to where to begin.

Anyone know of travel agencies in Dallas, TX?
foggybridges is offline  
May 7th, 2014, 11:18 AM
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 10,509

This list might give you a place to at least start. I have NOT used anyone in that area so I can't tell you if any of them are great or terrible, but if you visit some of their websites it might help you decide if you click with one agent or another.

I've worked with three travel agents in the past and my takeaway from those experiences is that a good TA can be a fantastic help. One was wretched, one was fantastic and one was fantastic AND a specialist in the area I was going. Don't be afraid to somewhat interview the agents or to ask "why do you suggest that trip/group/location for me?" or "what is your experience with SEA?" A good travel agent should seem excited about your trip... if they just toss you a folder of canned tours then you're probably in the wrong place. Canned tours can be great, use those to build the tour you want, but if that's all the TA offers then they're not helping.

For curiousity, where are you headed in SEA and when?
Iowa_Redhead is offline  
May 7th, 2014, 11:38 AM
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 9,122
US travel agents seem to specialize more these days and for a price, if they're worth having at all. If you're budget-conscious, you may find you need to forego the luxury, as I think these days a good one is just that.

However, if you can get recommendations for in-country agents then you may find it won't cost you more and sometimes will save you money. Don't be afraid to use them as they can be much more attentive and willing to meet your budget than the much more upscale good ones here (US).
MmePerdu is online now  
May 7th, 2014, 02:05 PM
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 25,349
I can't remember the last time I used a US travel agency, and yet I've traveled successfully all over Asia. Come over to the Asia board and people will be happy to help you plan your trip. They'll even recommend a few in-country agencies if you really need the help.
thursdaysd is offline  
May 8th, 2014, 01:53 AM
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 7,648
if you use a travel agency in your own country all they will do is get in contact with a local agency and charge you a substantial mark. as thrusdaysd suggests, ask on the Asia forum and you will get lots of suggestions for local agencies. that said, i really dot think you need one as it is so easy to arrange DIY travel in SEA.
crellston is offline  
May 8th, 2014, 06:23 AM
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 10,189
ASTA, the travel agents association, has a web site where you can find the name and address of a local affiliated travel agency. This is probably the best way to go since you want someone with a professional affiliation.

Having said that, you'll get a much better experience booking a trip to Southeast Asia if you use a professional who is a specialist in the region. And not that many agents are such specialists, though Dallas is a huge city and may have someone good.

Are you looking for a guided tour, a package, or an independent vacation? Do you have particular countries in mind? I the Asia travel forum is well positioned here to help you at least make some broad choices. There are a lot of people who are particularly good with Thailand there.
doug_stallings is offline  
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