The Travel Professor
Join me on a journey across the broad spectrum of interesting travel topics. We’ll discuss destinations domestic and abroad, some familiar and some off the beaten path. We take a look at suppliers like cruise lines, air carriers and tour operators and find their bargains and special offerings. Got questions? Email

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

On-line travel booking horror stories

It seems that every time I wear something with a travel related logo on it people want to share their travel experiences with me.

For the past few years I have been hearing mostly horror stories about on-line booking problems and supplier issues. It is always a tale about a friend (a nice way to deflect the blame from themselves) that made their own reservations and was extremely disappointed (sorry I can’t use some of the other colorful and descriptive terms that were used) with the product or service.

Complaints about price have never really been mentioned other than in the same breath as having found a great deal.

Actually they found what they perceived as a great price and bought on that consideration alone. Quality or the lack of was never their major concern until they traveled then it became an important issue.

Their complaints really focus on quality and I recall the old saying “that you get what you pay for” and in travel that axiom really holds true.

I bit my tongue wanting dearly to remind them of this but I listen attentively to their conversation. Then I smile and add “Two amazing deals were found online. One is a dream come true. The other one is a nightmare. Do you know which one is which? Your friend sure didn’t but I’m sure that a professional travel agent does. Check with a travel agent next time!” (NOTE: Not all travel agents are created equal so you’ll need to conduct so research on that subject too.)

Years ago I discovered it was easier and cheaper for to have a professional work on my car or the house’s air conditioner. I believe that this approach applies to most if not all professions so I advocate working with someone who knows what they are doing or you’ll suffer the do-it yourselfer consequences.

Happy travels! Got questions? Email me at