I recently read an article providing tips for planning a honeymoon that caught my attention. The first tip was to not use a travel agent. The advice was based on the writer’s own bad experience and not based on knowledge of the travel industry and how it really works.
Blogs are often opinions and are not always neutral in presenting the facts. However, advice should be fact based. When giving advice, I feel it is irresponsible to base it off of one experience and not research it by talking to other travel agents and couples that used a travel agent.
I have no doubt that the writer had a bad experience with the travel agent that she chose. Her bad experience has led her to her misperception of an entire industry. A bad experience does not make her an expert in planning honeymoons or qualified to advise others!
One travel agent that may not have done her job properly does not mean that all travel agents are bad at booking honeymoons. I am sure this blogger is an expert in writing since she is an assignment writer for the Huffington Post. The blog she wrote makes me want to say don’t listen to bloggers when planning a trip. However, that would be hypocritical of me to insult all bloggers because one upset me. I follow a few great travel bloggers that know what they are talking about and would not put down an industry of travel professionals. Reading the misperceptions about travel agents can also educate us in correcting those misperceptions.
I have been a professional travel consultant and an expert at planning romantic honeymoons for over 14 years. My husband and I have been on several honeymoons because you can have more than one! I am an experienced authority on romance travel. Here are three tips to help you when it comes time to plan your perfect honeymoon.
1. Talk About It.
Talk about where you want to go. You may have different ideas of the perfect honeymoon. A honeymoon is not a vacation. Your soon to be significant other may not want to lay on the beach for seven days. Ask each other these questions:
- What is our budget?
- Do we want relaxation or adventure?
- What are our expectations of this trip?
- What are our priorities?
- What have you always dreamed of doing?
This conversation may continue for a couple of hours or a couple of days. Remember this is how you are going to start your happily ever after.
2. Research. Research. Research.
The internet is a powerful tool but be careful with the resources you are trusting. Remember that bloggers often give opinions that are not based on researched facts; they often base opinions on singular personal experiences. Trip advisor is can be helpful but keep in mind that you are reading reviews from people that you don’t know. One person’s definition of a 5 star resort may not be the same as yours. Ask around and see what others have experienced. Thoughtfully consider all of your research and your options.
3. Find a Professional Travel Consultant.
There are travel consultants that specialize in certain areas or types of travel. Travel professionals have knowledge, experience and resources that the public does not have access to. A good travel consultant is often invited to resorts and is allowed to experience everything the area has to offer.
Here are some suggestions on what to look for when talking to a travel agent.
- Ask the travel consultant for resources and testimonies.
- Talk to another couple that has used the consultant services.
- Ask what professional associations they belong to.
- Find out if they have visited the resorts they are recommending.
- What trips do you specialize in? Family, couples, adventure, European?
- Are you available if we encounter problems such as missing a connecting flight?
Most travel consultants want to make your experience wonderful and better than you imagined. A good travel consultant will take time in getting to know their clients and qualifying them to the best resort that fits the couples wants, needs, priorities and budget.