Travel Agents?

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Don Draper

Well-known member
Aug 10, 2008
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I'm just curious as to what your experiences with travel agents and their customers has been. When we first started we got a few calls from travel agents and we'd give them a 10% commission. Now that we're so busy we wouldn't even consider a commission and let travel agents know this, but they are still willing to book their people with us.
Our universal experience with travel agent-booked guests is that they are terrible. They have all been clueless and demanding at the same time. We just had a set of two check in, for 3 nights of course. They hadn't read a word of the confirmation (if the travel agent even gave it to them) and it just seems a bad fit...they want a hotel with an ice and vending machine. Do I just turn these guests away in future? If so how do I say this to the agent?
We've had pretty good experiences with European travel agents. We usually only get calls from AAA in the US. I think the travel agents we've had contact us have a smaller clientele list and they do some research in advance to make sure there is a fit.
I've had a couple from the US call and ask ME where they should book the guests in for earlier or later parts of their stay. Where they should send them for dinner, etc.
We had a small group of quilting ladies last year and they were booked by a place in the Netherlands. Then this summer a family from the UK who had to give a 'report' when they got back of where they stayed and if they'd send their own friends there on vacation. (The travel agent contacted us later on and said the family liked it here so they would keep us on their list.)
This is what seems odd to me, all the travel agent guests we get are USA...the Euros book everything directly with us.
This is what seems odd to me, all the travel agent guests we get are USA...the Euros book everything directly with us..
Yes, most Euros book directly, but we do get the odd email from an agent. Of course I always wonder about them. Is this a real biz or what. I've been pleasantly surprised and have not been expected to give huge discounts to get the guests.
AAA knows I don't give agent discounts, it's right in my listing. They don't even ask.
Still the question was about experience and it hasn't been that bad for us.