CNN Promotes the Use of Travel Advisors

by Richard D’Ambrosio
CNN Promotes the Use of Travel Advisors

In a story entitled, “The Perks of Booking Your Next Trip Through a Travel Advisor,” CNN's Shivani Vora challenged the concept that “travel agents are obsolete.” Photo: Epov Dmitry / Shutterstock.com.


Travel advisors received a major pat on the back this week, when CNN reported on how travel professionals are in high demand for the “incomparable benefit” they generate for consumers planning vacations.

In a May 20 story entitled, “The Perks of Booking Your Next Trip Through a Travel Advisor,” writer Shivani Vora challenged the concept that “travel agents are obsolete.”

“At a time when travel booking sites and apps are a dime a dozen, and travelers can plan an entire trip without speaking to a real person, travel professionals are actually in high demand,” she wrote. “Just don't call them agents.”

Vora noted last year’s rebranding by The American Society of Travel Advisors (ASTA), previously named the American Society of Travel Agents.

"Travel agents have become trusted advisors, akin to financial advisors, who make the overall travel experience better and get travelers maximum value for their travel dollar," CNN quoted ASTA spokeswoman, Erika Richter.

Also quoted was travel industry analyst Henry Harteveldt, founder of Atmosphere Research Group. Harteveldt said he believes “there are many perks” to using a travel advisor, including the fact that “travel advisors can typically find great deals,” just like online travel agencies (OTAs) and metasearch engines.

CNN quoted “a real-life example” of an online search for three nights this October at Le Royal Monceau, in Paris. The OTAs returned an average price of $930 a night without any additional amenities such as breakfast. Given that a la carte breakfast for two at that hotel can cost more than $100, CNN was happy to find that Skylark, part of the Virtuoso network, offered $832 at the hotel for the same dates, including a guaranteed room upgrade, daily breakfast, a welcome amenity such as a bottle of champagne, a $100 food and beverage credit, and a late 4 p.m. check-out.

Harteveldt also told CNN that travel advisors support their customers “if anything goes wrong during the trip.”

Vora wrote that “advisors are especially useful for people who are too time-pressed to plan their own vacations or for people who simply don't enjoy the research part of travel.”

Also quoted in the story was Virtuoso CEO Matthew Upchurch. "Creating that perfect trip involves a back-and-forth discussion with clients about what they want and don't. Advisors do the work to make it happen and share their expertise to make your getaway as seamless and memorable as possible,” he said.

  7
  0
TMR Recommendations
Top Stories
How One Advisor Turned an Accent into an Asset

Marie Rosenbaum came to America as an exchange student when she was 17. Today, she is building her year-old travel business selling Club Med to European customers in the middle of the night.

Improving Your Vision: Toronto Raptors, Deviled Details and Travel Advisors

Here are actionable ideas to establish a vision for your agency business, and the practical steps that will help you bring it to fruition.

Norwegian Cruise Line Names New Chief Sales Officer

The new appointee will manage all third-party booking channels for the cruise line, including NCL’s travel advisor partners.

Air Canada Bolsters its Global Sales Team

The airline made several new appointments to help further expand and refine its global sales strategy.

Working from Home, Serious Advisors Make the Switch

It’s hard work, but it’s worth the freedom to work when you want and with whom you want, says the growing force of home-based agents.

BCD Travel Acquires Milwaukee-Based Adelman Travel Group

The full-service travel management company adds more than 300 people with combined annual sales of $675 million to the BCD global network.

News Briefs
Tip of the Day

As travel advisors, we have to be curious. Curiosity leads to impactful connections that pave our road to success. - Jenn Lee, VP of Sales and Marketing, Travel Planners International

Daily Top List

U.S. Airports with Shortest Security Wait Times

1. Salt Lake City International

2. Washington Dulles International

3. Boston Logan International

4. Minneapolis-St. Paul International

5. Charlotte Douglas International

Source: TMR

TMR Outlooks