Travel Agency vs. Travel on your own

If you are planning to travel over the summer, you might be trying to decide what is better, traveling with an agency or on your own. Not a lot of people travel with an agency anymore, but they are definitely still out there to help you out. I usually travel on my own, because I like the freedom I have without the agency, but here are some pros and cons for both.

 

Travel Agency

IMG_2966Pros

  1. They take care of everything for you! Once you pay for a trip, they take care of booking the flights, hotels, any transportation necessary and even insurance. This makes planning a trip very easy and you don’t have to worry about anything!
  2. Point of contact at your destination – it is good to have a contact wherever you are going. You never know what might happen and a travel agent can help you get into contact with a doctor, police or anything else that you might need. They can also help when you are trying to communicate with the hotel staff that don’t speak the same language.
  3. Tours and tour packages – through your travel agent, you can pick out tours or tour packages at your location. They will pick you up at the hotel and take you to different places at your destination. Guided tours can be great, since you find out a lot about the place you are visiting.

Cons

  1. Annoying tour guides – tour guides can be very annoying sometimes. They can be way over the top and almost too nice. They also keep offering you different deals and that can feel like they are pushing you way too much into some of their tours and activities.
  2. Limited choices – when you travel with an agency there are only so many dates they can offer you. The length of the vacation is also set and not flexible. They also have a limited choice of hotels they cooperate with, which means limited amount of destinations.
  3. Bankruptcy – agencies can go bankrupt, which means you just lose your money.

 

Traveling on your own

Pros

  1. Freedom – you can literally do anything you want. You choose your travel dates, the airline you will fly with and the hotel you will stay at. The choices are endless.
  2. Hotel – you can chose where you will stay, which means you can go either as cheap as you want or as luxurious as you want.
  3. Things can be cheaper – you can choose a cheap hotel, which means cheaper trip in general. Also, you don’t have to pay the middle man, which cuts down the price.

IMG_8011Cons

  1. More risk – when you are planning everything yourself, you have to be more careful and make sure it all lines up. When you travel with an agency there is a sense of security because they take care of everything.
  2. Transportation – you have to figure out transportation on your own. Whether that means booking flights, finding your way from the airport to your hotel, or finding buses/trains to your destination.
  3. You have to think of everything – you have to make sure you organize everything yourself, including insurance and if you are planning any trips once there. You might want to ask yourself questions like, will I need to rent a car? Or is transportation secured?
  4. Learning about your destination – find out as much as possible about the country you are visiting. Look up the history, the current situation, best places to go to and even some phrases that will help you get around.

There may be some risk in planning your own trip, but I personally think it is worth it. The freedom of getting to do whatever you want is great. For some people the security is a little more important though. Let us know what you think!


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