Travel Agent Saves the Day – and the Luggage

by Cheryl Rosen
Travel Agent Saves the Day – and the Luggage


Two weeks after a huge snowstorm closed New York airports earlier this year, hundreds of travelers had no idea where their luggage was. One new bride and groom were waiting for the keepsakes from their destination wedding; one college student arrived for his semester abroad with not one piece of clothing or personal items.

But, in another example that shows why everyone should use a travel agent, Jack Bloch’s customers arrived home intact and relatively swiftly. And so did their things.

Jack Bloch, president and CEO of JB's World Travel Consultants in New York, got a call from a female client flying home from Vienna on Jan. 4, who had been scheduled to land at John F. Kennedy International Airport. With bad weather approaching, Bloch had advised her to just stay in Vienna, but she was traveling with a seven-year-old child who was ill, and she just wanted to get home.

The storm closed in; the flight was diverted to Chicago; the woman and her child sat on the tarmac for two hours. Then the airline gave her a little card with a number to call to get her luggage. But, of course, no one answered.

After 30 minutes, the client called Bloch for help. “I said 'forget about the luggage. I am checking you into a suite at the Chicago Airport Hilton.' And, I found her a nonstop business class seat on United, which had been smart enough to bring in some jumbo jets,” Bloch said. “Then we called different channels, got American and United involved, and arranged to have the luggage delivered to their home. The luggage took three or four days, but my client and her daughter were safely at home the next day.”

In the luxury market, Bloch said, it’s all about service. "It’s a growing market and it’s a niche market, and it’s all based on referrals.” He added that usually “time is the key word — how do you value time?” But sometimes, having someone to call in an emergency is even more important.

Just another reason to use a travel agent.

TMR Recommendations
Top Stories
Money Magazine’s Millennial Finance Writer is the Newest Travel Agent Fan

Travel advisors can learn a lot about how to attract Millennials by understanding how Julia Glum – Money’s “Dollar Scholar” – realized travel agents make sense.

Sales Superstars: Jeni Chaffer of Journeys Travel Grows Mexico Sales in Tough Market

Learn the secrets of how this travel advisor increased her Mexico bookings by more than 25% in the past six months.

Headquarter Happenings: Signature Travel Network’s Owners Meeting

A new database and a focus on luxury had attendees buzzing — while insiders cautioned that AB5 is likely to spread to other states.

New South African Tourism President: Time to Tell the Story

Now five months into the job, Jerry Mpufane is on the road telling North Americans why South Africa is a place they really need to visit.

MSC Cruises Adds Michelle Lardizabal to Oversee U.S. Sales

The cruise industry veteran takes on a newly created position of SVP and commercial sales officer, serving the entire U.S. sales organization.

Forbes, Washington Post Guide Consumers to Find Smart Travel Advisors

Both Forbes and The Washington Post recently reinforced the value that travel advisors bring to the travel experience.

News Briefs
Tip of the Day

"I didn’t understand that they could access these amenities through the buying power of these networks they join. I didn’t realize that an agent could open doors that I couldn’t."

Julia Glum

Money Magazine

Daily Top List

Best Hotels in Detroit

  1. Detroit Foundation Hotel
  2. The Townsend Hotel
  3. MGM Grand Detroit
  4. The Royal Park Hotel
  5. The Henry, Autograph Collection

Source: US News

TMR Outlooks