Travel Agencies and E-mail

In a few days or so, I will be planning our family's summer vacation. I figured inquiring via e-mail will be more efficient so since a few months ago, I collected travel agency contacts so that it will be easy for me to do my research and/or canvassing re rates via e-mail.

Last January 16, I e-mailed 6 travel agencies, all located near the place where I live. Of the 6, only 2 have bothered to reply and the date today is January 29. That's 13 days or almost two weeks just to reply to e-mail!

The first travel agent replied on January 18 while the second one replied sometime last week. I guess when it comes to the travel sector, customers who actually visit the office or inquire by phone are still given preference.

Why do I like to inquire via e-mail? It saves me a trip to the travel agent's office. I save on gasoline, time, and effort. It is my way of screening which of the travel agencies pay attention to clients who inquire via e-mail or the internet. I also find that you can tell a lot about the way people do their work by the way they respond to e-mail. If they are able to reply to your queries, point by point, then you can tell that they will probably be pretty efficient or attentive in handling your transaction.

Inquiring via e-mail also allows you to list down all your requirements and document them. With an e-mail exchange, you have a record of the things you have agreed on, things that have been discussed or promised. It is much better than making several phone calls only to be disappointed much later on when you find out that it's as if you haven't discussed anything in the past. Besides, not everybody has a fax (so that agents can fax you their quotes and itineraries) but almost everyone has e-mail.

So what did I learn from this initial inquiry of mine? Well, I've narrowed down the agencies from 6 to 2. I will update you regarding how the process goes and if am happy with how things turn out, then you will see that I will surely promote that travel agent here.

Wish me luck!

[By Angelica Viloria | Monday, January 29, 2007]

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