Travel agents work hard on behalf of the consumer. The role of a travel agent is to make a trip - whether for work or pleasure - a stress-free and memorable experience. Travel agents spend time not only booking tickets and searching for affordable prices, but also personalizing their services for individual clients. ASTA’s motto, "Without a Travel Agent, You're on Your Own," exemplifies the importance and way professional travel agents view their role in today's changing market.
The Internet can be a powerful tool. It can increase the scope and reach of a consumer's efforts and allow a person to check hundreds of options or research destinations in depth. But to make the Internet work effectively, a person has to understand where to look and what questions to ask, otherwise hours can be wasted surfing the Web and ultimately produce unsatisfactory results. This is where a travel agent can make a world of difference.
There are some things technology cannot replicate, and the personal touch is one of them. The Internet is a valuable resource, but it cannot replace the expertise, guidance and personal service of a travel agent. At a time when travelers are stressed out with hectic schedules, travel agents have all of the information at their fingertips, saving valuable hours of surfing on the Web. Agents also can offer insider tips based on personal experience.
Over time, the leisure travel industry has become price driven. Many people today base a large part of their travel buying decisions on cost and convenience. Additionally, more people are booking closer in to their travel dates. Thanks to dramatic discounting across the industry, consumers have been conditioned to wait until the last minute before booking in hopes of securing a deeply discounted package deal.