Points Dealing with Travel Advisors as Tourism Returns | TravelPulse

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With the pandemic ebbing, all indicators level to a significant travel resurgence. That excellent news; nevertheless, comes with caveats. Travel advisors are reporting provider employees shortages, ticketing errors and lack of availability, amongst different issues.

“I’ve had major issues not with just one supplier but with many,” stated Tammy Levent of Elite Management Travel Group. “I feel as though throughout the entire shut down, while vendors and tour operators were regrouping, their ticketing agents were discombobulated.”

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In one occasion, a big tour operator Levent has labored with for years modified its know-how platform, she stated. “As advisors we could not even log on, we had no way of calling in, support was diminished to hold times of six to eight hours, and that has not gotten any better.”

Prior to the platform change, one of many agent’s operators uncared for to subject tickets for Levent’s shoppers “and therefore they were canceled by the airline – and of course the agent no longer works for this company,” she stated.

“The reissued tickets were $500 higher, and they wanted me to pay the difference. I had it all in writing that the tour operator’s agent was indeed told to issue the tickets,” Levent added.

“We went back and forth with my emails for proof of that and I was in the right! I was so aggravated they finally agreed to pay for the difference.”

In one other occasion, an airline canceled her shoppers’ flights on Dec. 9 for journey in February. The provider didn’t reply to Levent’s queries however “finally sent us a form for the clients to fill out so they can get their refunds,” she stated.

“The clients are fuming at us,” Levent stated. “We have lost clients as a result of tour operators, hoteliers and vendors not stepping up and taking responsibility for their actions – or they just don’t have the employees.

Jemica Archer of TruBlue Travels said she has also experienced supplier issues. “I am noticing that suppliers seem to be short staffed, or their employees are feeling burned out and overworked, which equals more errors and longer hold wait times.”


People traveling through security to the gates of Denver International Airport
As demand will increase, stock is shrinking, brokers stated. Pictured, Denver International Airport. (picture by way of ivanastar/iStock Unreleased)

For Sarah Klein of Time For Travel, the biggest issue right now is that “demand is overwhelming and certain segments of the industry are not able to handle it well.”

“My specialty is the destination wedding market and we’re experiencing five times the demand of any previous year. I am reaching out to hoteliers’ wedding departments and waiting weeks for a response,” she stated.

“Couples who are getting married in Spring/Summer 2022 are desperately trying to plan and finalize their weddings and the hotel wedding teams are dropping the ball on service.

“I’m disappointed in the companies who didn’t prepare better for the comeback. There are exceptions and those are the ones who will come out on top in the next few years.”

James Berglie of Be All Inclusive can be dealing with points regarding demand. “Resorts are full, people want to travel, and inventory is in short supply,” he stated. “Additionally, we’ve seen instances of resorts adopting the airline’s ‘over-book’ strategies – which I am not a fan of – in which they knowingly oversell a resort knowing that they get a certain percentage of no-shows and cancellations.

“But a few properties are seeing that policy come back to bite them when they are not getting the percentage of no-shows or cancellations they expected.”


Passport, mask, CDC, vaccination, card, records, proof, COVID-19, vaccines, boosters
Passport, face masks and a CDC-issued COVID-19 vaccination card with particulars of preliminary vaccines and booster pictures. (picture by way of iStock/Getty Images Plus/Bill Oxford)

Archer famous that the largest subject she is dealing with continues to be altering protocols. “Different countries change protocols so frequently and you want to make sure you’re advising your clients of the most recent compliance requirements,” she stated.

Another issue facing advisors is “countries that are still insisting on vaccines, tests and travel restrictions,” Berglie stated. “Although we’ve seen many lessen these restrictions recently, when it comes to navigating the red tape of travel authorizations, pre-travel testing, proof of vaccine, etc., or choosing a destination where none of that is required, travelers are going the route of least resistance. The locations that have returned to 2019 entry requirements are the locations that are, and have been, thriving.”

In Berglie’s view, “the test requirement to return to the US remains one of the last major hurdles in the battle for the industry to return to normal.”

“I’m hopeful that in the coming months we may see that, and the airline mask mandate taken away as well,” he stated.


COVID-19 Positive
Positive check end result through the use of speedy check gadget for COVID-19. (picture by way of jarun011 / iStock / Getty Images Plus)

For Kim Cook of Love to Travel, the danger of testing optimistic in a vacation spot continues to be a priority that’s inflicting shoppers to be hesitant to guide proper now.

“I think as soon as that restriction is lifted we are going to be busier than ever,” she stated. “We just had a client test positive over the weekend, so we had to work to get his flights rebooked and communicate with the resort about his extended stay. It had been a couple of months since that had happened so it was a reminder that it can still happen and cause headaches for our clients – and for us having to make the adjustments.”

Cook additionally stated that charges are rising at well-liked locations and resorts. “This is not deterring most of our clients, but it is causing concern for group travel. “With groups, the individuals have different budgets to consider when choosing a location so some are pushing back on the package price.”

Like different advisors, Cook famous that many resorts are bought out for the summer and into the autumn. “We are recommending to our clients to book now and not wait for a lower price as it likely won’t happen,” she stated.


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