Personal Travel Consultants versus Online Travel Agents

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What’s the Difference Between Online Travel Agents and Personal Travel Consultants?

Most of us prefer to go with travel consultant more often, but there are times when services like booking.com come in handy. Here we’re going to discuss the advantages and disadvantages of both options without any bias. Let’s get started, so you can understand what’s better and when.
Personalised Service with a Human Touch

Personal Travel Consultant
Online Travel Agents (OTAs)
Personal Travel Consultants 

OTAs or Online Travel Agents are based on algorithms and make autosuggestions based on the data collected about your web usage, history and needs (search keywords or terms). So, you reach either a bot, a computer or in some cases, an answering service. If you need assistance like many others out there, it’s a great choice.

On the other hand, a travel consultant is a real person and will communicate with you and understand your requirements better. They’re trained professionals, who believe in the importance of integrity, reliability and communication. They keep these basics as the crux of their operations and deliver personalised and perfect solution for their clients and make your requirements from the get go, a priority. Customer is the King of their business and you’re treated accordingly

Know-How & Experience

OTAs or Online Travel Agents are based on algorithms and make autosuggestions based on the data collected about your web usage, history and needs (search keywords or terms). So, you reach either a bot, a computer or in some cases, an answering service. If you need assistance like many others out there, it’s a great choice.

On the other hand, a travel consultant is a real person and will communicate with you and understand your requirements better. They’re trained professionals, who believe in the importance of integrity, reliability and communication. They keep these basics as the crux of their operations and deliver personalised and perfect solution for their clients and make your requirements from the get go, a priority. Customer is the King of their business and you’re treated accordingly

Special Privileges

OTAs are almost always large scale and cover a lot of ground, so they don’t really give individual or personal attention or offers to their customers. Also, their algorithms gives little room for personalisations, but with their advancements they don’t have a need to create or maintain long-term and mutual relationships in their business or with their customer base.

On the other hand, a travel consultant’s job itself is making your holiday special and your trip conformable – as such they take your requirements and liking seriously and are able to offer privileges and complimentary or low-priced add-ons like meals, upgraded accommodation, spa treatment, private tours, transfers, etc. In other words, they can give you a deal that you might not find otherwise, listed publicly. Thanks to their expertise and tie-ups their clients can get preferential treatment. 

Planning & Timing

OTAs are ideal for all your normal trips. They’re easy and hassle free if you want to book hotels or flights without much ado. That’s what they’re best at – user-friendly and hassle-free transactions.

On the other hand, we always research and make sure everything is as it should be, especially for holidays or special occasions or trips. A personal travel consultant is just what you need for those instances. They can make your weekend getaway, or your honeymoon, or your family vacations special. Times are tough and what with COVID delaying a lot of plans and occasions. All the more reason to make it more special after the delay or other issues and the much awaited and long overdue trip is well worth it.

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Price & Payment Methods

OTAs have an array of options whether you’re checking offers, payment methods, deals, etc. As long as you can book right away, you’re good as the prices will keep changing, so do the deals. Also, their prices for the hotels can vary and you will almost always have more than one option to choose from.

On the other hand, independent consults have forged ties and partnerships with a lot of people and businesses through nurturing relationships and good communication. As a result they often have access to special deals, rates (needless to say those complimentary add-ons and extras that can make your trip extra special). They also offer a completely transparent process and reliability, put you at ease throughout different stages and can make changes or adjustments should they be needed at some stage, because they are equipped to be flexible and make changes on the fly due to their connections.

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