Secrets You Should Know About Honeymoon Planning
It seems as though with the Internet and its many travel Web sites there would be no need to have an actual person book your travel. Surprisingly, however, more and more people are going back to using travel agents for at least some of their travel needs. According to a New York Times article, Forrester Research, a technology consulting firm, reports 9 percent fewer people booked travel online in 2007 than in 2005.
This is probably not news to brides and grooms embarking on their honeymoon planning, and who may find themselves turning to an experienced travel agent for the very first time in their lives. Most honeymoon couples are young enough to have incorporated the Internet into most aspects of their personal and professional lives, so why shouldn't they just book a honeymoon online themselves?
"Honeymoon couples have many reasons for using a travel agent to help plan and book their honeymoon, not the least of which is the time they can save and focus on other wedding details, instead. An experienced travel agent can help them plan the itinerary, book airfare, hotels and activities, saving them time and, frequently, money," according to Scott Ellingboe, CEO of The Honeymoon (www.thehoneymoon.com), an online honeymoon resource that has a honeymoon gift registry service, destination information, honeymoon packages, and a nationwide network of experienced travel agents.
While it's true that travel agents can save a couple the time they might otherwise spend on research and planning themselves, can they really save them money?
"If a honeymoon were simply a matter of booking an airline ticket from point A to point B, then using a travel agent is going to cost more," says Ellingboe. "But travel agents have relationships with tour and package providers that they can leverage in ways the average consumer cannot. Also, honeymoons can involve complex itineraries to various places throughout the world." This is why The Honeymoon has put together a network of honeymoon and destination specialists throughout the country. "These agents don't pay us to be there, we chose them because we wanted our honeymoon registry customers to have the most experienced and knowledgeable travel agents in the industry," offers Ellingboe. In fact, honeymoon and luxury travelers have never really stopped using travel agents for this very reason. Ten years ago the travel agent was going to be 'disintermediated,' a fancy word for 'put out of business.' But today agents are still a viable part of the travel industry.
What it really boils down to is this: there is so much information and so many travel options from which to choose that using a travel professional with the "been there, done that" experience can make the difference between a good trip and a "trip of a lifetime." Long live the travel agent!
(Metro Creative / 07)