Why Travel Agents Still Are Useful in the Age of Online Booking
If you think using a travel agent to plan a vacation has gone the way of vinyl records, think again. Travel agents—often known as travel advisors or consultants today—are still around. And, like vintage vinyl, making a comeback by people who want a more tangible experience when traveling the world. The internet has indeed made things easier, allowing you to essentially cut out the middleman and book directly with airlines, cruise lines, tour operators, resorts, and more.
However, utilizing a travel advisor can be incredibly advantageous for several reasons, including saving you money and time, offering assistance during your trip, and getting you perks and extras you won’t find on a basic booking website. Plus, expert guidance is a perfect option when you’re having trouble narrowing down your vacation options.
Here are just a few reasons why using a travel consultant is still helpful in 2023:
Who’s Using a Travel Agent?
It’s no surprise that in the last few years, travel was more complicated. Between entry restrictions and last-minute changes, suddenly booking a vacation brought anxiety-inducing uncertainties.
This is where a good travel advisor can come in to save the day, with more and more people turning to their services in a post-COVID-19 travel era. Their reassurance and advice, along with pent up demand, have proven to be a few reasons travelers are turning to the experts.
- 41% of consumers are planning to spend even more on travel in 2023*
- 45% believe using a travel advisor would put their mind at ease*
- 27% of travelers always or often use a travel consultant**
- 44% say they are more likely to use a travel advisor after the pandemic**
If you’re just booking a flight to stay with your family for a few days, a DIY online airline purchase is a good way to go. Once you start needing multiple reservations or are booking somewhere new and exciting for a bucket list trip, things become more complicated.
Masters at finding the perfect destination and resort, travel advisors can help you go from your list of narrowed-down options to the ideal choice thanks to their vast knowledge. They’re absolutely essential when booking group travel, like for a destination wedding or family reunion. They also know everything from which resorts have been recently remodeled and are best for families, couples, and more to which Caribbean beaches are best for your favorite activities and which neighborhood you should stay in during your European city getaway.
They work with you one-on-one to pair you with that all-inclusive property, spa resort, or family-friendly getaway for a customized approach that makes travel planning with a consultant a stress-free experience.
Saving Time and Money
Armed with the latest information about packages, properties, and new activities, travel consultants have inside information that you’d have to spend hours searching for online. With years of experience and firsthand knowledge, travel consultants save you countless hours and plan your trip with expertise no search engine can give.
Plus, travel agents like our Liberty Travel consultants do price comparisons, provide restaurant recommendations, and more, depending on your preferences and destination—all so you can save time.
Our experts’ industry connections help get you the best value for your journey, thanks to their valuable insider access. For example, they’ll know which Cancun adults-only resorts are offering the best deals during your booking period. And they’ll deliver access to exclusive packages and savings.
Perks and Extras
From rooms with the best views to construction updates and upcoming events, travel consultants have all the inside info you can’t find on your own. This includes the ability to make unique requests and assist in special arrangements that would be harder to do on your own.
Need specific accommodations? Want early check-in? Have unique dietary needs that you need to make sure the hotel or resort can handle? Want to surprise your partner with flowers and a bottle of wine in your room upon arrival? A travel agent can help make it happen. Part of their job is fostering relationships with airlines, resorts, hotels, tour operators, and more—so they can get results with one quick call.
We never want anything bad to happen while traveling, but it’s great to have someone you’re your back if it does. From rebooking during a weather-related event and battling unexpected flight cancellations to handling issues with your accommodations, your travel consultant acts as your personal travel advocate.
Instead of waiting in an endlessly long line at the terminal if your flight is canceled, contact your travel advisor. Even if it’s late at night or during the weekend, agencies and businesses like Liberty Travel have ways to get in touch when times are tough. For example, Liberty Travel has a specific After Hours Customer Support team for emergencies.
Ready to learn for yourself why travel agents are still useful in the age of online booking? Start planning your next trip with us now…
** Matt Turner, ‘Stats: 44% of Travelers More Likely to Use Travel Advisor After Pandemic,’ Travel Agent Central, 2021.