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Old July 19th, 2001, 01:11 AM
Ken Ken is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2000
Posts: 236
Default What happens if your TA takes down their shingle?

I've learned so much from this site and the postings I've read on these boards, and am grateful that so many people take the time to respond and share their expertise. My question has to do with using a Travel Agent, specifically when using a Travel Agent that closes up shop and takes up another line of business, say bus driving.

I just purchased my second cruise (from an online TA) for May '02, and when I told a friend what I had done she expressed concern as to what happens if the online TA goes out of business - I should say she once worked for now-failed dotcom and has experience in the subject. The next day I was walking through my neighborhood and noticed a local travel agency that had been there for years was now out of business.

So, in the world of cruising, where you can place a deposit on a cruise months in advance, what happens if the agent from which you purchased goes out of business? Do you still have a reservation with the cruise line? Would I become an unsecured creditor of the TA? (I noticed on my credit card statement that the deposit was paid to the cruise line, not the TA.)

Any comments on the subject appreciated - and I sincerely hope no one here speaks from any personal experience on the subject!

Thanks
Ken
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Old July 19th, 2001, 01:12 PM
Senior Member
First Mate
 
Join Date: Oct 2000
Posts: 289
Default Re: What happens if your TA takes down their shing

Luckily I've never encountered this situation, but I have seen several travel agencies in my area go out of business overnight so it certainly could happen.

Nevertheless, it seems to me that if the TA paid the cruise deposit to the cruise line, then you have a bona fide booking with the cruise line; therefore, if your TA's business folds, your cruise deposit is still safe. In order for you to access your booking yourself the cruise line would probably want some confirmation from the TA that he has gone out of business; but other than that, I wouldn't think you would have a problem.

If the TA did not pay the cruise deposit directly to the cruise line, then you may have to kiss your deposit goodbye in the event your TA's business folds. That is why you should ALWAYS get confirmation directly from the cruise line (or airline or whatever travel company you're dealing with) that you have a booking and they have received your deposit.

Hope this helps!
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Old July 19th, 2001, 03:45 PM
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Admiral
 
Join Date: Oct 2000
Posts: 5,238
Default Re: What happens if your TA takes down their shing

Hi, Ken ...

One good reason to ALWAYS use a credit card for this sort of thing.
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Old July 20th, 2001, 10:43 AM
Senior Member
Admiral
 
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: New England
Posts: 2,420
Default Re: What happens if your TA takes down their shing

When you receive your printed confirmation, make sure you have a "Booking" number. This way should something occur, you would have a tracking record. Also, this is a major reason for purchasing Travel Insurance and not from the agency or cruise line. Although many agencies sell top name brand coverage, just Go on-line and check out Travel Guard or Access America. You can always purchase insurance even after you have made deposit. Things change. You may not get Pre-existing medical exclusion, but it definetly would provide peace of mind. By the way, that is a very good question and could happen in your neighborhood or to any on-line or major agency.
Bon Voyage
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