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Old October 31st, 2007, 08:20 PM
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Default Travel agents-when NOT to work with them

I went at lunch today to book my next, well next September, cruise. I went to one agency who has a good reputation and I was told that if I was not already a client they couldn't take anyone else on because they couldn't give good service (Canadians are booking out of country vacations more than ever now). Uhm, I WANT to give you money, I already new where I wanted to go and they didn't have to sit there and hold my hand while I decide where/when to go and what ship to book. I left there a little miffed, ok, I'll go else where. I went to another one and I really didn't get good vibes when she called the ship a boat and she said she didn't know if they dealt with Carnival or not...EXCUSE me, how can you NOT deal with them, afterall, they do have a fleet of 21 ships! I gave her basic info and asked her to call me back with info--I had no intentions of booking there. I went to another agency close by and booked there, at least the agent I got had been on a cruise and had been to St. Thomas, and San Juan before.

Another reason to NOT book with an agent is when you say X cruise line, X date, and you need air add-on. The agent called me back and said that Carnival didn't have a sailing for that date (Sept 6) on the Liberty, but RCI had Freedom of the Seas leaving on the 7th and promptly quoted me a fare that was for a low deck inside cabin (I was quoted $1500 approximately) and I mentioned a balcony cabin. RCI is NOT Carnival, a inside cabin is not a balcony, and she didn't even have the date right because by the time she called back I had booked my cruise with another agent!

No, travel agents are not all the same.....some are good, some are snobby, and some are some are just plain BAD!!!!

Anyhow I am booked, but the ship doesn't sail until September 6, 2008....
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Old October 31st, 2007, 08:35 PM
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My goodness! What an experience! Fortunately you know enough to recognize a good TA and know the ones to avoid. A newcomer to cruising may be clueless! BTW, congratulations on the new booking!
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Old November 1st, 2007, 06:44 AM
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This is reason we have a PVP with Carnival. She does everything for us, I just give her a window of sailing dates and she already knows we like to sail different ships, we like the 6:15 dinner seating, want a balcony, and we pre-paid our tips.
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Old November 1st, 2007, 10:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marty30907
This is reason we have a PVP with Carnival. She does everything for us, I just give her a window of sailing dates and she already knows we like to sail different ships, we like the 6:15 dinner seating, want a balcony, and we pre-paid our tips.
We use a PVP as well and will continue to use him until we start sailing other cruise lines.
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Old November 1st, 2007, 11:02 AM
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I'm Canadian, and haven't booked a cruise with a Canadian travel agent since 1996. With the internet, and since CruiseMates inception I've found wonderful travel agents in the U.S., who offer great pricing and great service.

For those who feel the need to book face to face you have to shop in your home area, but it's really not necessary. I use emails and telephone calls and that works just fine for me.
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Old November 1st, 2007, 11:10 AM
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I use my home town agency, and we still use the phone and e-mail a lot.
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Old November 1st, 2007, 08:42 PM
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I was tempted to use the PVP's from Carnival, but I still like to get a piece of paper at the end that says everything I need, and not one I wrote, that and I don't know much about how good their travel insurance is. I too am Canadian and I still like to use the services of a TA, but I find the best deal and then book. Perhaps in time I will go with the PVP's. I will NOT book online, I worry about problems, so I avoid it, for now...
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Old November 1st, 2007, 10:07 PM
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We also use a PVthrough Carnival and never had an issue. They are great!
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Old November 2nd, 2007, 12:03 AM
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If a travel agency or anyone else doesn't want my money then they won't get it. Hope they go out of business ! Just don't come crying to me
I think today we are forgetting the fine art of business etiquette and client/customer relations. Thankfully, my TA has been wonderful...so far.
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