Scrolling through social media today, it can be easy to feel green with envy every time you land on a photo: luxury beach vacation, luxury ski trip, luxury winery, another luxury beach… What’s their secret? How do people budget for such luxe, plush and lavish experiences?
The truth is, they don’t. That’s where their travel agent comes in. While it may seem like a luxury in itself to outsource your vacation planning to someone else, the benefits and results far outweigh the actual cost. For a breakdown of how travel agents are your key to living large without breaking the bank, we break down just what makes working with one worthwhile.
The Benefits of Tailored Travel
While just about any vacation will certainly seem like a great vacation in the moment, the nuances that separate the best getaway from the run-of-the-mill trip come down to how your travel is tailored to your interests and needs. It might seem easy enough in theory to just book what you like—but there’s a whole world out there, full of possibilities to navigate. It’s a full-time job determining what will work, what won’t work and what hasn’t been discovered by mainstream travelers.
You can't do Bora Bora for $3k. But then we can expand the conversation to talk about other beaches and island destinations...
This disconnect between what you think travel is like, and what travel is actually like, can make for a steep learning curve. Lori Randle, an Albany-based travel agent with Vacation.com, had the following to say as an example: "For me, I would say that when potential customers connect with me and they are in [lower budget range], the majority of the time the destination does not fit the budget. You can’t do Bora Bora for $3k. But then we can expand the conversation to talk about other beaches and island destinations that do work for them.”
This in essence, is where the value of a travel agent’s service shines. Personalized itineraries provide the most bespoke experiences, which in turn translates to the most cherished memories. The difference between a good vacation and a perfect vacation is priceless.
The Myth of Costing More
Even with all of the above benefits behind your vacation, the most prominent concern for anyone considering a travel agent seems to always be cost. After all, we live in the 21st century: while travel agents are experts regarding travel, what could they possibly know that you can’t find out with enough time and Google?
Travel Leaders Group’s Eva Braiman says it best: “The fear that you will pay more, or that there is a fee, or that it's old fashioned is always the biggest barrier. What can they do better than me? One word: Value. Smash the idea that you pay more fees with an agent. For starters, there's peace of mind. An agent gets to know you, your specifics and taste, etcetera. On top of that are the perks and waivers and favors. There’s a reason that agents sell the most suites; the 'good stuff’ is often reserved for agents.”
There's a reason why agents sell the most suites; the 'good stuff' is often reserved for agents.
Summed up, unless you have years of professional relationships with luxury cruise lines and resorts, your odds of enjoying these decadent amenities on your own is as likely as winning the lottery. A travel agent isn’t just an expert to the world of travel, they’re also your personal travel concierge to turn those dream Instagram moments into real lavish travel experiences.
Inspired by this article and want to speak with an expert travel agent about getting started on your next luxurious getaway? Let one of Vacation’s on-call travel experts match you with an expert travel agent, who can customize the dream itinerary that you deserve.