We changed TA's for this cruise. Our TA we had for years has retired. So we chose a popular cruisemates cruise planner this cruise. I was just wondering do all TA's give great gifts to the cruisers who book with them?? Our old TA gave us champagne in each cabin plus chocolate covered strawberries. Free picture coupons. etc.... Just wondering.. It wont ruin our crusie but it was always so cool to have gifts waiting in our cabins when we would get there. Happy cruising.............
I don't consider a TA good just because they send a bottle of wine. The WORST TA I ever used sent us a bottle of wine and champagne. Whoopie. She lied to us about being able to get a lower price when the price dropped. Didn't answer questions and knew little about cruising.
It was many years ago and I knew little about how cruising and pricing worked but now I know that this TA should not have been selling cruises and a couple of cheap bottles of wine didn't make up for her incompetence and laziness.
My current TA may give us onboard credit (depending on the cost of the cruise) but never a bottle of wine. I could care less. She delivers service and a competitive price. That's what I want.
If you really want some wine and goodies. Take the money you save and send some to yourself.
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"There is a great difference between being well traveled and just having been to many places." ~Me
Hmm, what do people use TAs? I thought the purpose of using a TA was in the event you didn't know what you were doing? I always book directly from carnival.com.
Well, in my view, that's not at all the reason you book through a TA. Booking directly with the cruise line is a way to make sure you're paying top dollar.
And if a problem arises you're asking an employee of the cruise line to go to bat for you against the people who pay them. Not a likely scenerio for satisfactory resolution in your favor.
To the original poster's question -- when cruise prices were higher it was very common place practice for TAs to send wine, champagne, or whatever as a Bon Voyage Gift.
These days it's really only common if the TA has booked you into group space they have, where they've earned amenity points from the cruise line to spend on that on that sort of thing (with the cruise line actually footing the bill).
Or, there are sailings where the cruise lines offer "incentives" such as that for individual bookings.
If those aren't the situation, and a TA is paying for the wine, champagne, chocolates etc then you can be assured that you are paying for it in your cruise fare... so you could be paying less without it, and deciding for yourself what you'd like to spend those $ on.
Thanks Kuki. Thats all I was asking is was it common practice to gift customers or was it jsut the TA we had for many years. I understand that I want the best prices of my cruise and the gifts are just a perk. We all enjoy our cruises so much. This isnt our first cruise. I just wanted to get some input. Guess I should have just waited and see when I get on the ship.
I have only booked a few clients, I send gifts for special occasion cruises. I sent a happy anniversary cake to one couple and Carnival's stuffed animals to a family traveling with their two small children. I usually just try to offer my clients all the resources I can get to them regarding their ship/destinations and the best cabin for their needs, and to occasionally go to bat for them with the cruise line. I have also had bad experiences with other TA's...hence why I got my license now. lol
I used a TA for my milestone birthday on the Splendor last year. I went all out and booked a spa suite on the Splendor, and I didn't have anyone else with me--very expensive for a solo cruise. I didn't care, it was kissing my 30's goodby and saying hello to 40! My TA made a very healthy commission on that booking. I did have a bottle of spakling wine and two water bottles in my cabin. You're thinking it was from my TA, but NO, it was from John Heald (he also was kind enough to pass on the details to the maitre'd so I got a decent table..and I did...).
Sometimes, for those who prefer using a TA, their knowledge and quick, efficent service is what we use them for instead. I like the TA I am using because she is happy, positive, and willing to help whenever I have questions!
I've had bad TA's too, you know the ones--the more you spend the mre attention you will get from them......
2007 Victory & Triumph
2008 Conquest & Liberty
2009 Valor, Freedom, and Splendor
2010 Glory and Liberty
I agree with Sky and Kuki. I get the best price form the lady T.A. I deal with--get (usually ) an O.B.C. so what else could I want? When I e-mail or call, she gets back to me. When I ask about a cruise, I always know the ship, itin., date,etc.. I'm looking for so I don't waste her time and in turn, I get the best price and service.
I'm happy with mine and hope she is in business for many more years to come.
Shop around and get the best possible price. If you like goodies waiting for you in the cabin, order them yourself, that way you have saved money, and you get something you actual want. I do like the onboard credit I have received that from a travel agent, but as Kuki and others said I most likely paid for it in my cruise price. Good luck, Mike
Travel Mike's Future cruises: Mariner Galveston 2-26-12,Magic Galveston 3-4-12 NCL Pride of America Hawaii6-2-12 HAL Statendam 9-9-12 Vancouver
My TA hasn't given me a gift (yet) but ... I just love dealing with someone who is conscientious and takes care of requests immediately. She always gets back to me ASAP. Sad to say, that kind of customer service is becoming more and more rare, isn't it?
__________________ Triumph ~ November 2010 Fantasy ~ April 2010 Fantasy ~ December 2009