Do People Still Use Travel Agents?

Do People Still Use Travel Agents?  Thankfully, the answer is YES!!!

When I first started in the travel business, I had two unique customers.  I was planning business travel by making air/hotel/car reservations, and I was working with brides on destination weddings and honeymoons.  As the years went by, the business travel faded due to increased costs in the business travel market.  The brides I had worked with were now booking anniversary trips and many had young families and were now planning trips to Disney, cruises, and family-friendly resorts.

Those family trips evolved into Grand Trips. This is where the grandparents take their grandchildren on a trip, and many times the mom and dad will plan some separate activities, and sometimes they went on a completely different trip.

Cruises then became the core of my business. It was a good way to offer many options to people with different ideas about what a vacation should be.  Cruises meant that families can plan activities together, but there can also be time apart to meet the different needs for everyone.  The cruise lines now offer many programs for kids, and there are adult-only areas on ships to give the grown-ups some time away.

When I get asked “who is your typical client?”,  I can have a hard time answering that question.  The average age, income, lifestyle and travel needs keep changing. But, the one thing that doesn’t change is that my clients are busy and don’t have the time to spend hours researching rates, dates and options. They have certain ideas in mind about where they want to go and what they want to do and want to find the best value for their travel dollar. My clients also want to know that they have someone to turn to when they have a question. A traveler can find a lot of information online, but you don’t always know if it’s accurate.

My travel business has changed and evolved over the years. I have trained to become a Cruise Specialist, a Certified Destination Wedding Planner, and many more.  That training and education is the reason why people still use travel agents.  Sure, you can book online, but I can assure you that a database driven website doesn’t have the knowledge, experience and vendor direct resources that travel agents do.

Amy Windham


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