Here is a disclaimer: You don’t need one. You really don’t. Particularly now in the internet age, everything you could possibly want is online. The cheapest flights, the hotel reviews… everything.
That said, I’m going to tell you why I used one.
- I didn’t have internet and I wanted to do something. So I spoke to a brilliant Travel Agent who helped me feel like I was doing something.
- Escape Travel does a deal where they go $1 cheaper than the cheapest deal (as long as it’s, you know, the same)
- She was incredibly supportive.
- She gave great advice and knew about the location I would be based from.
All that aside, using a Travel Agent can be limiting. They don’t have every hotel under their banner, so if you’re also doing your own research (which I definitely recommend) you might find your favourite hotel is out. The hotels they do have however, they vet, so they know that they’re good hotels and you’re not gonna get scammed. (at least that’s the idea).
When I did my own research, I hopped on TripAdvisor and found hotels in my price range that I liked. I found several before I crossed off the hotels that maybe weren’t as nice as they seemed. Once I’d weedled the list down to about four, I spoke to my Travel Agent who then looked them up on her system. She didn’t have all of them, but she had the one I went with.
Another thing you should watch out for is price difference. With Escape Travel it was easy. I went to a cheap flights finding site (STA travel, Webjet, Skyscanner) found the flight she’d quoted for me at $900, and found it at $771. And the same with the hotel, it went from $519 to $460. It’s things like that that make the process affordable. You don’t have to take everything at face value. A Travel Agent shouldn’t be your only stopping point.
Get Reading. Get Travelling.