The thought of using a Travel Agent in the 21st Century is outdated, right? With a wealth of information only a few clicks away – more than we could ever work our way through, what would be the benefit of going through a tour operator? Hundreds of high-street travel agencies have announced closures to their stores in the last two years – this in theory confirms the drop in the trend of using Travel Agents. However, here at Off The Map Travel we see a different side to this argument everyday.
There has been an increase in people demanding quality over cost and looking for reliable, practical first-hand advice when it comes to planning their ‘once-in-a-lifetime’ holiday. Travel agents understand how important holidays are and as they’re being entrusted with the success of a customer’s precious trip, this is a real responsibility which shouldn’t be taken lightly!
There is a new market emerging where the customer is more than willing to pay for insight, especially to some destinations which are famously hard to reach and where it is also difficult to understand how they operate – making planning your own trip very complicated. Along with insight, the customer is also receiving the dedicated service of an entire team; no question is too small or trivial. The most surprising fact regarding the increase in popularity of travel agents is the demographic group which has turned to travel agencies. In the USA 30% of millennials have used a travel agent in the last 12 months and they’re the most likely to recommend agents to a friend or family member. This could be due to millennials choosing to spend more money on travel than previous generations, they’re using travel agencies to plan more complex international trips – they understand how using a professional travel agent can enhance their overall trip experience.
Travel agents such as ourselves who specialise in certain niche tourism have the experience and contacts to seamlessly organise the perfect, unique trip which would be either very difficult or too much hassle for the customer to arrange themselves. Boutique agencies specialise in more of the luxury travel sector for people wanting a real adventure, but with the comfort of a nice hotel and good food! This concept is achieved through the relationships we have with suppliers. These partnerships have been built after several years of working closely together, producing polished experiences which our customers rave about.
Here at Off The Map Travel we focus on both Northern Lights adventures and whale watching holidays, we choose to specialise in just these two tourist attractions to ensure we know our product like the back of our hand. Reputable travel agencies will only send their guests to destinations which as least one member of the team has been to. This is something we strongly believe in and is why we’re constantly visiting new destinations and checking in on current ones. We want to ensure we are always up to date and giving our guests the most accurate information and advice possible. As travel agents we build trust with our customers by imparting as much knowledge about our destinations to the customer as possible to help them to hone in on what exactly they want from their holiday. It is so difficult to trust online sources and trawling through hundreds of reviews is exhausting and can often make choosing a destination even more confusing and longwinded.
We pride ourselves on being a truly tailor-made tour operator, a concept which can be thrown about very loosely within the travel industry. Tailor-made means that the trip is built around you, where, what dates you would like, the length, whatever you would like to include/exclude – its all your decision. Companies who claim to be ‘tailor-made’ but can only offer set trips which aren’t flexible with activities and can’t accommodate any special requests are not tailor-made. Of course when you choose to purchase a tailor-made holiday you are paying extra for that privilege, however we firmly believe it’s worth every penny to ensure no mishaps and the best possible once-in-a-lifetime adventure!
We are strong believers in the benefits of using travel agents in the 21st Century and the value of professional advice when it comes to designing the perfect holiday. At Off The Map Travel that’s exactly what we do. We don’t just advise on the best holidays for you, we design your entire trip around you – so why not ask us about how we can make your dream adventure a reality and save you a lot of hassle?