Recently, at a wedding show in Southbury, CT, I met wedding and event planner, Lisa Antonecchia of Creative Concepts by Lisa. We realized that both of us were in the business of making memories that last a lifetime, she as a wedding planner and me, as a travel agent. She asked if she could interview me for her blog because she knew from her clients that they needed help with planning their honeymoon. Here is what came out of our “conversation.”
Me: There are many different reasons that you should use a travel agent to book your honeymoon but these are my top 5:
- Travel agents have connections at many different properties. We can see to it that you are well taken care of. In some instances, you may receive extra amenities, or even an upgrade, because you are on your honeymoon.
- We have a wealth of knowledge about the destination you are visiting including whether you need a passport, a visa, vaccinations, tourist card, entry and exit taxes for the country you are visiting, currency exchange, electrical difference (converters), wifi accessibility and so much more.
- A travel agent’s knowledge of a destination should not be discounted. We make suggestions about excursions, restaurants, etc. We will help you avoid mistakes, such as visiting a destination during the least desirable time of year. This will save a significant amount of time, research and aggravation.
- A travel agent adds personal touches. We care about the outcome of your honeymoon and really want to make it as special as possible. Additionally, we are your advocates so we make sure that your planning is as stress free as possible. We want you to spend more time enjoying your special vacation and little to no time fixing problems or oversights.
- It does not cost you a penny more to book your honeymoon with a travel agent, so why would you waste time, energy and angst doing it on your own?
Me: Many travel agencies, including mine, offer concierge services. Occasionally, there is an extra charge for this but it is minimal, comparatively, to the service you receive. Of course, this service is optional. Most seasoned travel agents are upfront about any fees. What does not cost you extra is the knowledge, tips/suggestions and personal service travel agents provide. Good travel agents will see that their clients are well taken care of from the beginning of the planning process of the honeymoon until they return.
Me: Hawaii and the Caribbean/Mexico continue to be top destinations for honeymoons. Many couples are also exploring Europe. Italy is one of the top European destinations, while many other people are honeymooning in Fiji and Moorea and Bora Bora. If you are thinking of having an adventurous honeymoon, I suggest hiring a wedding planner like Lisa. She will save you time and energy which you will need for your adventurous honeymoon. But if you don’t believe me, read what one of Lisa’s clients had to say about hiring a wedding planner.
Lisa: What are some steps that should be taken to ensure a safe trip to and from a destination experiencing unrest?
Me: Hire a travel agent! I can’t say this enough. We will keep you informed as to the status of travel advisories, help make adjustments as well as reschedule flight/hotel/excursions, when needed. Also, always purchase travel insurance no matter where you are traveling. You can never plan for the unplanned. It will save you money and angst. I always say, “it is nothing when you have it and everything when you do not”. And it is especially necessary when visiting areas of the world that are experiencing unrest.
Lisa: Will it cost you more to use a travel agent than booking online?
Me: It absolutely does not cost you more to use a travel agent than to book online. What you save is not necessarily the price, which is usually the same as the online price. The savings you reap are in the time spent planning, as well as our money saving tips and expert advice that help avoid costly errors. I can’t say this enough but “Buyer beware” when you purchase online. If it looks too good to be true, it probably is! Always make sure to read the fine print and understand what you are signing up for. The last place you want to end up on your honeymoon is in a destination, during rainy season, overlooking the dumpsters at a property or a vacant, dilapidated,neighboring property. This happens more often than you think! That is a cost that could have been avoided if you had booked your honeymoon with a travel agent.