Why Consumer Travelers Should Use a Travel Agent
These days with the Internet being so omnipresent (and you're obviously using the Internet to read this!) some people think travel agents have become obsolete and old fashioned.
While it is true the Internet can be a useful resource and even a good way to book some travel arrangements directly, the Internet can also be deceptively helpful. There's too much information out there, and much of it is not quality controlled. Just because a website looks good doesn't mean its information is valuable, accurate or unbiased.
And if you're using the Internet, you may end up booking your travel arrangements over a range of different websites and suppliers, located in different countries, and unconnected with each other. If something changes with one of your bookings, the other arrangements will need to be adjusted by you, and any conflicts or mistakes might not be so obvious as if you'd booked everything through a single source. Worse still, if you have a problem with a booking, especially while you're on your travels, you might find there's no-one available to help you when you most need it, and your ability to get a fair settlement from an Internet company, perhaps in another country, is clearly much less than if you are dealing with a regular travel agent.
A good travel agent will provide you with a broader and more complete range of services than can be found on the Internet. And the ability to conveniently speak with a real person can make all the difference when you have a problem, or need some special advice or assistance.
Travel Agents Can Help You Plan Your Trip
A good travel agent first gets to know you and learns about you, your approach to travel, what you like to see and do and how you like to do these things. They can then act as sounding boards, matching up what they know has worked for other travelers like you (and steering you away from things that look good on the Internet but which in reality aren't as good as they seem), and helping ensure you get to see and do the things that are best for you and your preferred style of travel.
They can suggest extra places for you to visit that you hadn't thought of, and can help you decide how long to stay at each place. Travel agents scan and also volunteer other information such as how a slight change to your travel dates you might save on hotel or air fare costs, or how you might avoid a peak travel period.
A travel agent is there for you to talk to; to answer your questions, and to help you 'get it right' when you plan your travels. No web application can do this the same way a person does.