To Find a Great Travel Agent

Travel can be stressful — especially when you’re going through the process of planning your trip on your own. The “let the experts handle it” mindset can be reassuring, but it also leaves you dealing with a lot of different vendors and details. It’s enough to make anyone want to hand over the reins. 

Fortunately, there are travel agents who can help! In addition to being a great resource if you need to book a hotel or decide on your airfare, they can also help you find a great travel agent that fits your needs and interests. 

Here’s how to find a great travel agent.

Know What to Look For

The key to finding a great travel agent is knowing what you’re looking for. Great travel agents are different from travel consultants and tour operators in that they arrange individual travel — they’re not necessarily brokers who sell you a bunch of stuff, they’re your travel partners.

That means they’ll help you plan your trip, but they won’t necessarily be booking your trip for you. That’s why it’s so important to know what type of travel agent you want to find.

Some of the most important factors to consider when looking for a travel agent are location and availability. You don’t want to go with an agent who’s in a remote location (unless you’re okay with long commutes to see family or friends) or who has no availability for you when you want to travel.

Interviews and Research

Your first step when looking for a travel agent is to talk to friends and family who’ve recently booked travel with them. Ask them which travel agent they used, what their experience was like, and if they had any recommendations.

This will give you a good idea of what you’re getting yourself into. You may also want to do some online research to see what other travelers have to say about the various travel agencies in your area.

When you have a list of possible travel agencies, call or visit each one and ask if they have any openings. While you don’t want to choose an agent solely based on location (you want to choose an agent because they’re a good fit for your needs), it’s important to at least ask about the availability of the agent.

Talk to Friends and Family

Once you’ve narrowed down your list of potential travel agents, ask your friends and family which one they would recommend. While this can help you decide which agent to call or visit first, it can also help you determine which travel agent you may want to work with.

A great travel agent will be easy to work with, have availability when you need it, and offer services that match your needs. If your mom has her heart set on booking a tropical vacation, but you’re more excited about visiting Great Galls in the UK, an agent who specializes in tropical vacations may not be the best fit.

But if your best friend is doing most of the planning and is excited about visiting the Great Galls, then you may want to get in touch with that same agent.

Tell Everyone You Trust

Once you’ve narrowed down your list of potential travel agents, it’s time to let everyone you know in the travel industry know you’re looking for a new agent. You may want to post a note on your social media accounts or email your friends and family who work in the travel industry.

This may give you a few referrals, which you can use as you’re making your calls or visiting the various travel agencies.

It’s also a great way to make sure you have someone to contact if you have questions after your initial visit. You may want to make a list of the travel agents you speak with, in case you need to get in touch with them again.

Get a List of Agents

Once you’ve spoken with a few potential travel agents, it’s time to get a list of their names and contact information. You can either make a note of the names and numbers in a journal or download a list of agents from an online forum like Trivago’s forum on travel agents.

You can also use sites like Agent Finder to see who’s available in your area and get basic information like their biography, specialties, and availability.

While getting a list of agents may sound like a crazy time consuming task, it’s one of the easiest things you can do to find a great travel agent.

Ask Around Online

If you haven’t already, it’s time to do some online research to find a great travel agent. While chatting with friends and family is helpful, you’ll get a much better feel for travel agents by looking at reviews and talking to other travelers who have used them.

Start your research on Trivago, Google, and Yelp — all sites where users share their experiences with various travel services. You may also want to look on TripAdvisor and Facebook, where travelers are often found leaving reviews.

Find a Great Travel Agent

Once you’ve gathered a list of potential travel agents, it’s time to decide which one you want to work with. 

While it’s important to find an agent who’s a good match for your needs, it’s also important to find an agent who’s a good fit for you.

You want to make sure you feel comfortable with who you work with, so if you’re not sure who you want to work with, it’s better to choose the first one you speak with than to push through with a travel agent who makes you uncomfortable.

Once you’ve found a travel agent who you’d like to work with, it’s time to negotiate. While it’s important to be organized and have a travel contract prepared, you can also wing it.

Just be sure to discuss the details of your trip with your new travel agent, and have an idea of what you want to cover. You may even want to have your travel budget and travel plan was written out so you don’t accidentally overbook your vacation.

Conclusion

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Once you’ve found a travel agent who you’d like to work with, it’s time to negotiate. While it’s important to be organized and have a travel contract prepared, you can also wing it.


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Finding a great travel agent can be tricky, but the process is simple. Once you know what to look for, it’s easy to narrow down your options and negotiate a great deal.

The key is to keep an open mind, talk to friends and family members who have used travel agents, and look online for reviews and comparisons of travel agents. With a little bit of effort, you’ll be able to find a great travel agent that fits your needs and interests.

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