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Old 08-22-2011, 03:12 PM
 
Location: Belize
18 posts, read 25,410 times
Reputation: 34

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I used to plan my own trips, but the airlines complicated matters with their so called deals. I use a specialized agent - one that only does a certain segment like fishing or hunting. Those guys have been agents for 40-50 years and know the ins/outs of the biz.
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Old 08-24-2011, 06:39 AM
 
12,292 posts, read 18,413,572 times
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The availability of the internet pretty much made travel agents obsolete. But they are still around and you can use them. The thing is there are lazy travel agents (the ones that do the same that you can do easily on the internet, and simply collect a commission) and good ones. Choose carefully.

And I am like the other guy, I like to plan my own trips, that's part of the fun and the experience.
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Old 08-24-2011, 07:48 AM
 
5,702 posts, read 16,193,290 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dd714 View Post
The availability of the internet pretty much made travel agents obsolete. But they are still around and you can use them. The thing is there are lazy travel agents (the ones that do the same that you can do easily on the internet, and simply collect a commission) and good ones. Choose carefully.

And I am like the other guy, I like to plan my own trips, that's part of the fun and the experience.
This is what happened to us. We got a lazy agent and it was a complete waste. 15 yrs ago we decided to get married in Vegas. We had little money and thought this was the best option. I had never been to Vegas before and figured for such a trip we should consult a travel agent. The woman told me getting married in Vegas was a no brainer. She had no brochures on wedding chapels, nothing. She said people fly to Vegas all the time, pick a chapel and get married. So that is what we did. We booked the flight and headed out there. When we arrived I flipped through the yellow pages in our hotel room looking for chapels. There were tons but when I called each one, ALL of them were booked up. Not one single opening! I couldn't believe we had flown to Vegas and might not get married.

So I asked the front desk at our hotel and they said getting married in Vegas was easy if we wanted to do the drive thru thing or find a chapel off the beaten path. I finally found a little place in the old part of Vegas. They had an opening. It was in a rough part of town and when we arrived it didn't look like a chapel at all. It looked like a store. They had to buzz us in, that's how terrible the neighborhood was. it wasn't a chapel. It was a dress shop with a fake chapel in the back of the store behind a set of louvered doors. The room was about the size of a large walk in closet. Everything was dusty and stale. The staff ran across the street to get the minister whom was at the bar. He came in drunk as a skunk and his suit was dirty. The ceremony lasted about 5 minutes. Not exactly what dreams are made of. We were in and out so quick that our cab driver decided to wait. She was a lovely woman and said she was worried about us (because the neighborhood was so bad and we looked a little green I'm sure) and decided to wait for us as she knew we wouldn't be long. It was completely bizarre and a complete let down. I didn't think I would have some fab wedding heading out there but had no idea it would be that bad. I wore my wedding dress for all of maybe an hour. That was a waste of money. I later realized the staff misspelled my name so on my marriage license my name is spelled wrong. Anyway, that travel agent was absolutely useless. I would have been better off making the phones calls myself before leaving.

My MIL uses travel agents all the time when she goes over seas. She has had good luck. If your agent seems lazy or can't give you information, get another.
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Old 08-24-2011, 04:55 PM
 
Location: Earth Wanderer, longing for the stars.
12,408 posts, read 16,481,392 times
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We just went to Vegas to marry, no agent, and found the backlog, too. We just went down to the justice of the peace. In and out, no problem. Married for over 10 years now wit no problems, knock on wood.
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Old 08-24-2011, 05:54 PM
 
Location: Belize
18 posts, read 25,410 times
Reputation: 34
Went to Ely, NV one weekend and we decided to get hitched. Called the front desk at the Holiday Inn and they made the arrangements and got married within the hour. No waiting, no bs, no drive ups. A real church and real honest preacher. We've made the trip back to Ely several times to gamble and watch others make their mark on the book.
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Old 08-24-2011, 05:58 PM
 
Location: Belize
18 posts, read 25,410 times
Reputation: 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dd714 View Post
The availability of the internet pretty much made travel agents obsolete.
That's pretty much true, however there are things that can't be done on the internet and a real good, hardworking agent knows the ins/outs. Mine works with a consolidator who gets me cut rate air tickets. Cheaper than the internet or Priceline. From here, everything is overseas, so visas are needed, the right foods for the crew have to be arranged, living quarters done - it's one stop shopping. I tell the agent the 5 w's and they do it.
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Old 08-24-2011, 10:01 PM
 
Location: Santaluz - San Diego, CA
4,485 posts, read 8,146,620 times
Reputation: 1976
With the power of the internet I don't think anyone needs a travel agent and I'm surprised people still use them. You can find out just about anything online and probably more things than most travel agents would know. There are so many websites or airlines, hotels, flash sales, reviews (ala Trip Advisor), etc. I travel over 100 days each and every year and I haven't used a travel agent since the early 90's before the internet began.

For me, the fun is planning it and you discover more planning it. I guess for people that aren't connected or don't go online much it may be needed but for most, the power of the Internet is amazing!
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Old 08-25-2011, 05:10 AM
 
Location: Earth Wanderer, longing for the stars.
12,408 posts, read 16,481,392 times
Reputation: 8777
None of my group has traveled much. My husband did, when he was a child, with his family but that was through the graces of the armed forces.

I think our first venture will be a longish one, and it will be nice to coordinate tours, hotels, and transportation. None of us speak another language comfortable enough.
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Old 08-25-2011, 11:40 AM
 
Location: Belize
18 posts, read 25,410 times
Reputation: 34
Unfortunately, not everything that is on the www is legit or even legal. You need to be careful.

Last edited by reefhunter; 08-25-2011 at 11:42 AM.. Reason: dup
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Old 08-25-2011, 11:41 AM
 
Location: Belize
18 posts, read 25,410 times
Reputation: 34
Unfortunately, not everything that is on the www is legit. You need to be really careful before giving out your credit card number.

We travel approx 120-150 days, not counting fishing time. Currently in Wyo heading for Wash
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