I’m not here to tell you not to book your travel online. (Even though I wish you wouldn’t) I’m just here to ask you some questions and explain some of the intricacies about how this industry works so that you’re as well informed as possible about your choices.
Let’s start with what’s involved in booking travel online: Find an OBT (online booking tool) that suits your needs, and if you’re like the majority of travelers these days you (think you) just want the cheapest travel deal and you think that different apps can give you a better deal. Not so.
It’s really just an illusion when you break it down because everyone is pulling product from the same inventory. The only time you’re getting a different price is if one provider has sold out their allotment of “sale” inventory and another still has some left.
And all this is if you’re looking to book a “simple” itinerary. What if you’re booking for several people and want to pay separately? Or if someone in your party wants a different class of accommodation than others? What if you’re going to an area where you’d like to explore by staying in more than one place and need to book more than 1 or several places to stay? What if you’re flying into one destination and out of another? There are a lot of “what ifs”, a lot of questions that need to be asked and answered and when you’re booking online, who is going to answer those questions for you? If you can get through to an actual person after holding forever has the person who’s answering the phone ever been to your destination or are they reading instructions off of a training manual?
Speaking of being on long holds on the phone, let’s talk about the TIME it takes you to sort through all of the OBT and then the time it takes you to figure out what product is best for you and then whether you can trust the organization (read through the trip advisor reviews) and then a hope and a prayer that you get the price you see (and that it’s not just click bait) as you tentatively enter your personal details and your credit card info. Oh lordt! The stress is real y’all. I know! I’ve been there myself. Seriously! I don’t know how you all do it to be honest.
Ask yourself this; how much do you get paid an hour? If you’re on salary or if you’re a consultant just do the math – break it down. Now tell me, if you think it’s worth your time (average 20 hrs per trip booked) to do that “guess work” yourself?
To add to this, did you know when you’re finished doing all the work for yourself you’re paying someone on the back end to confirm the booking and email you your confirmation and documents? Well you are. So you do ALL the work and then pay someone else to send you an email. It makes no sense to me, yet the big OBC have convinced us all that this is the way it should be.
There’s more chance of errors, which means more money in their pockets. There’s less personnel to pay, which means more money in their pockets. There’s less training of employees, again more money for them. They’re able to manipulate the industry because they’ve convinced us this is the way it should be and give us less services so they can make more money.
And you and I pay the price. And often that price is money and _______ (you fill in the blank).
Money and errors, money and time, money and no one to assist me with answers, money and a bad holiday outcome. You can’t get any of that back. I’m just saying.
The average person doesn’t just “do the research” and try to build their own house or be their own shoe maker. There’s nothing different about creating your holiday. Like any other investment it requires the assistance of a professional in that specific field! Do yourself a favor, save yourself time, money and a potential headache and let us help you create your holiday dreams!