First of all, I've never used a travel agent before, so maybe I'm expecting too much?
Here's the scoop:
My husband and I decided to take my family (Mom, Dad and my sister) on a cruise in July. We've been on several cruises already and have always set everything up ourselves, but since I've never set it up with so many people (and the possibility of dealing with different airlines/airports/rental cars/etc. ), I decided to pay a little extra and go with a travel agent this time around.
So, on Monday I call one that has the best reviews in my town. She takes a little information, like the dates we need to travel and my budget, but I already get a bad feeling about this because:
1) she insists that my parents won't like a shorter cruise on Carnival and states that I should go with a more expensive cruise line (even though we've taken at least 5 cruises on Carnival already and know exactly what it's like)
2) says that even though I requested inside rooms, that ocean view rooms only cost a little more each day and are a lot nicer. (In case you're wondering, they're $20 extra a day, spread over 3 rooms and we're talking at least $300 added on to the price of the cruise for a view that you can get just by walking up a floor or two)
3) She didn't get all of my information (like the fact that I want 3 cabins!) before rushing me off the phone
So, the chemistry isn't quite there. I don't quite trust her, but in spite of that, I decide to see what she can find in my budget range. Maybe she can work some magic and get all of this within my budget on a fancier ship with ocean view rooms.
And here's where my big pet peeve comes in: she says she will call me that night around 4:30 pm, but she does not call Monday night, Tuesday night or any night this week. I finally email her on Thursday (I'm a teacher and got busy during my prep period so I didn't get a chance to call her). She emails me back on Friday and says she's busy with another tour and will get back with me on Monday (though Monday is a holiday, so I'm wondering if it will actually be Tuesday).
I really hate it when someone chooses a deadline and then does not follow through (but maybe that's just my teacher-ness coming through... I live by schedules :)
I think I'll see what she has to say on Monday, but if she doesn't call or email or if its way out of our budget, I'm just going to say that it's strike 3, save myself some cash and just deal with the headache of scheduling all this myself.
EDIT: I completely understand the upsell. I thought our first contact would be just getting the info and then getting back to me with a price on exactly what I asked for and then launching into an upsell (like, for only $xxx more you could go with this cruise line or get outside cabins). The main part that I took issue with during the call was when she told me that my parents would not like a Carnival cruise because they are "older" and (after I brought up that we've been on multiple carnival cruises) that I didn't mind Carnival because I'm "younger". I know Carnival can be a bit of a booze cruise, but my parents are kind of in to that. :p