Recently, My Vacation Lady has read some interesting posts on travel agent only boards on social media sites that really make us wonder if our clients read the information and the travel vouchers we send out.
As an example, one of our colleagues was just on a re-positioning cruise, which started in one U.S. city and ended in San Juan. There were about 100 guests on board this ship who never realized that the ship wasn’t sailing back to the same cruise port. They had NO FLIGHTS booked to get them back to the city where they boarded their cruise. How might this happen, you ask. Well, they booked their cruise directly with the cruise line and no one at the cruise line mentioned that they needed flights or that the ship wasn’t returning to the original port of embarkation. Should the cruise line representative have told them that airfare would be needed to fly from San Juan to their original port of call? The cruise line’s personal cruise planners are sales agents whose goal is to sell as many of the cruise line’s cabins as possible. Should they have made sure that the guests understood what the itinerary was? A travel professional would have but the personal cruise planners aren’t professional travel consultants. They are order takers. Their only mission is to make their goals. The passengers would have realized that they weren’t headed back to New Orleans as soon as they read their itinerary and saw San Juan as the last port on the itinerary. How could 100 people miss that? Guess none of them read their itinerary.
We read about honeymooners who missed their flight from Bali back home because they thought it was 12 hours later than was written on their documents. We read about clients who were renting a car in Europe but arrived at the rental office with only a debit card and not a valid credit card and were not allowed to rent the car. The itinerary and vouchers clearly stated that a valid credit card was required. Another post was about honeymooners who claimed that the wrong excursion was booked for them, even though it was clearly described on their itinerary –before they made their deposit.
We frequently get calls or emails, asking if transfers are included in the package? Is insurance included? One was from a couple about to leave for their honeymoon. The documents were sent to them in the mail in a nice document holder. The groom mentioned that he did remember seeing the package but didn’t look at it.
We just read another which was even funnier or sadder- depending on how you look at it…couple just arrived in Mexico and called their travel professional to find out where to find their transfer company to take them to their hotel. When the travel agent said that it was on their vouchers, the response was that they didn’t print out vouchers and they were still in their email inbox but that since they didn’t have an international data plan, they didn’t have access to their email.
PLEASE READ THE ITINERARIES THAT WE SEND TO YOU. If they are emailed to you, please print them out.
It is so much easier to make a change before you leave for the airport and realize that something isn’t clear or worse, if you are already in your destination and have no clue what to do next.