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Diane

How on earth do High St Travel Agents survive?

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    Decided to book a holiday for the autumn back to Fiji, where we went back in Jan 2008, and as I got the brochures from a local travel agent, thought I'd do my bit to support local industry and customer service by booking the trip through them.

     

    Well, all I can say is I don't know how these local travel agents survive! After spending three hours sitting across the desk from the agent, I came home completely frustrated, got in touch with the online agent I used last time and had answers to my questions within minutes, a tailor-made quote for what I wanted (with comparative quotes for two other options) and the trip booked!

     

    I know the local agents must suffer a bit from the online competition, but honestly, you'd think their staff would be trained a bit better than they are! Shouldn't they be aware, being in Adelaide for instance, that the daily direct flight operated by Virgin Blue to Nadi gets in too late for the last ferry to the islands, and be able to offer you solutions and options accordingly?? I used to work in tour and travel organising in the UK many years ago so have some idea of the different options/methods/things to consider, but hate to think what would happen to someone who relied solely on their local agent to sort out their trip for them!

     

    Absolutely hopeless!

     

    For anyone thinking of booking an international holiday, I can highly recomment the girls at www.travelonline.com, and www.tripadvisor.com is invaluable for doing your own research! (For instance, local travel agent quoted price of $54 per person to get car transfer from airport to Denerau Port, a quick search through Tripadvisor gave taxi prices for the same trip as $25 a taxi - bit more civilised than over $200 for the four of us!)

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    Guest Guest5035

    Di, i know of a EXCELLENT TA in TTP, and i mean EXCELLENT.

     

    Stevo.

     

    PS, Fiji you are brave going there, just don't leave your hotel grounds though, our diplomats got expelled from Fiji a few weeks ago.

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    Di, i know of a EXCELLENT TA in TTP, and i mean EXCELLENT.

     

    Stevo.

     

    PS, Fiji you are brave going there, just don't leave your hotel grounds though, our diplomats got expelled from Fiji a few weeks ago.

     

    LOL Steve, if it's the one you've recommended in the past, then I think that's the one I went to!!

     

    As for Fiji, from past experience, what goes on in politics has very little effect on the average locals, (see here: http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g294331-i883-k3195234-o20-Concerned_about_travel-Fiji.html) and in Fiji the locals are absolutely wonderful! Still, if it all goes pearshaped I've got travel insurance!

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    Guest Guest5035

    if you booked with mastercard (CBA) travel insurance is free,

     

    Stevo

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    We get free travel insurance with the credit card we have - but it's Visa. It's the one I got a while ago to get the free excess insurance on car hire too..... and the other credit card we have gets Virgin Air Miles, which I used for the flights!! Just call me Penny-pinching Witch of the North East!!!! Now all I have to do is find some way to use the Fly Buys for something useful......

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