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Thread: Fleeced by Fees article NY TIMES

  1. #11
    Senior Member AndyM's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Paradise Beach Villas Eagle Beach
    It's simple really.

    "Let's reel the sucker in with low low published prices then we'll nickel and dime them to death after they're hooked."

  2. #12
    Senior Member Jarubian's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Renaissance Hotel, Baby Beach

    10 MYTHS

    MYTH 1:
    All Travel Agents and Agencies are the Same.
    FACT: Every travel agent is different and has a different area that they specialize in. So, depending on what type of trip you are looking to take one travel agent will suit you better than another. That’s why it is important when planning a trip to find a travel agent that specializes in where you want to go.
    MYTH 2:
    No One Uses Travel Agents Anymore.
    FACT: Travel agents still sell 51% of all airline tickets, 87% of all cruises, 81% of all tours and packages, 45% of all car rentals and about 47% of all hotels.*
    MYTH 3:
    Travel Agents are Trying to Cheat Me if They Don’t Quote Me the Cheapest Price.
    FACT: Travel agents know the ins and outs of different itineraries. While you might find one that is a little bit cheaper, that cheaper itinerary might involve a whole slew of headaches. For example, longer waits at the airport and odd travel times. A travel agent will be looking to get you the best value for your money spent which should include the most direct and time friendly itinerary they can find. Unless you have told them you would prefer to have the cheaper options presented as well expect value to be a factor included in the trip they plan.
    MYTH 4:
    It is Expensive to Use a Travel Agent.
    FACT: The fee a travel agent charges really depends upon the agent. While some of the more luxury agencies have higher fees, the average fee is quite marginal. Some travel agents will even drop the fee or offer a discount once you have finalized your trip with them. Plus, you can always ask an agent upfront what their fees are and decide for yourself if it’s worth it. Also, it is important to remember that a lot of online booking sites, such as Orbitz and Expedia, charge a booking fee as well.
    MYTH 5:
    I Can Easily Book the Same Trip on My Own
    Without Using a Travel Agent.
    FACT: Although travel agents have access to all of the same outlets you would use when looking to book travel, they also have access to exclusive pricing and package deals that are most times not available to the public. Your travel agent also has more leverage in helping out in situations such as hotels claiming to be booked, when in fact they may still have rooms available that are on hold for travel agents reservations. So when everyone else is telling you "No" your travel agent can help turn that to a "Yes."
    MYTH 6:
    Travel Agents Don’t Have Information as Updated
    as the Internet.
    FACT: Travel agents obtain some of their information from the same sources as online booking sites. They also receive daily emails and faxes with new specials from resorts and hotels that may not be published on the internet. Travel agents can also call a place directly to see if they can work out other kinds of special deals for you, something an online site can’t do.
    MYTH 7:
    Travel Agents are a Waste of Time.
    FACT: Although you can find much of the same information that the travel agent provides for you on your own, you are going to spend a lot of valuable time doing so. A travel agent can actually save you from hours of painful research and price comparison shopping. They have up to date prices, hotel conditions, and interesting new activities. Their prior knowledge and experience gives them the upper hand in trip planning.
    MYTH 8:
    Travel Agents Have Lost Their Clout
    FACT: Travel agents book hotels, cruises, and activities every day. The companies that provide these services know that and want their business and will work to keep that business coming back. So while a place might be telling you "Sorry we are booked," for your one time trip, they are more likely to make an exception for the travel agent to insure that the agent sends them more business in the future.
    MYTH 9:
    The Need for Travel Agents is Being Replaced by the Internet.
    FACT: There are some things technology cannot replicate, and personal touch is one of them. The Internet is a valuable resource, but it cannot replace the expertise, guidance and personal service of a travel agent. At a time when travelers are stressed out with hectic schedules, travel agents have all of the information at their fingertips, saving valuable hours of surfing on the web. Agents can also offer insider tips, generally based on personal experience.
    MYTH 10:
    Travel Agents Can Only Book My Flight and
    FACT: Travel agents can arrange car service, personalized tours, activities and travel insurance, in addition to all the basic travel services they provide. They are also excellent sources of information concerning good restaurants, good sites to see, and tips on what to pack.
    *Source: American Society of Travel Agents
    Last edited by Rayon; 10-04-2013 at 08:08 AM. Reason: ** Link removed at request of website owner
    Love Aruba

  3. #13
    Senior Member danadog56's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    everywhere and anywhere
    very interesting article....since I travel a lot for my company I see these fees often...usually the only ones that really get me are the rental company fees.....especially when you are making the reservations and it shows the price per day as say 33.00...then you get the bill and by the time all the fees are added the bill is close to 100 instead....
    same with the timeshares i own at divi....fee for airconditoning and i think gov't fees...adds up to about 15-25 per day depending on what kind of room you have (studio or 2bdrm...)

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Oct 2009

    Simple Solution

    I have a simple solution for redacting these sneaky fees, STAY HOME for a few seasons, then we'll see the outcome. Stop spending money and then we'll see which direction this "fleecing" goes!

  5. #15
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Arashi Beach, Hyatt, Radisson, Shopping, Flea Market, Downtown, Palm Beach, Everything
    on the subject of travel agent fees. I didn't know they charged a fee, years ago they didn't. they got their kick back from the airlines or hotels. Does anyone know what percentage fees MCM charges??? We are planning on using them for the guests for the wedding and I guess you can tell its been a long time since I used a travel agent. LOL

  6. #16
    Senior Member charles's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Walking the shorelines in the evenings
    Ed, You are right about the monitors watching over the board members. I love this kind of interaction.

    About the "fees" Has it ever occurred to you that the strongest group is the one that visits our island and pays these fees? It is an incredible power-base and I dread the day that everyone unites in ernest and says - NO - I am not paying. Cancel my flight.
    Think about it. Scary isn't it?

    be well

    Quote Originally Posted by Edronenburg View Post
    Thanks, Andrea, and Arubalisa (or your comments), this further illustrates how our monitors look out for our "Forum Members" by excellent articles and good advice.

    be well

  7. #17
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Eagle Beach, Baby Beach, Arashi Beach Tierra Del Sol golf course
    Quote Originally Posted by Chadd View Post
    The author omits a lot of information in order to try and bolster his arguments. For example; Spirit does charge for carry on bags, but their ticket prices start at $9 for some routes. Once you add in all the fees, they are still often cheaper than the major carriers on many routes. They're experiencing tremendous growth right now as well, so that pricing model seems to appeal to a lot of people. The $19.99 premium entree fee US Airways is adding is only if you want to upgrade your meal. The standard international meal is still included with the ticket price.

    There is a very simple reason why airlines are adding fees. Ticket prices are taxed, fees and surcharges are not. Given the razor thin operating margins at most airlines, moving a portion of the ticket price into a fee can be the difference between a profit or a loss on a flight, route or for the airline as a whole.
    The problem is, baggage, snacks, etc, all the things airlines now charge extra for were already included in your ticket price even if you did not use the service. They did not reduce fares before they started charging for these things so they are in effect double charging for these fees now.

  8. #18
    Senior Member cpjones's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Eagle Beach, Glitz Casino, Manchebo Beach Resort
    Quote Originally Posted by gaby View Post
    on the subject of travel agent fees. I didn't know they charged a fee, years ago they didn't. they got their kick back from the airlines or hotels. Does anyone know what percentage fees MCM charges??? We are planning on using them for the guests for the wedding and I guess you can tell its been a long time since I used a travel agent. LOL
    gaby, I wouldn't be too concerned about MCM/Player's Choice fees. Whatever they are, they still seem to offer the best and most cost effective packages for an Aruba visit. We've used them for the past 5 or 6 years and they've always been exceptionally competitive. There are a lot of positives on this forum supporting MCM/Player's Choice. Enjoy the trip!

    Also..... all fees are included in pricing... no surprises!
    Last edited by cpjones; 10-17-2012 at 03:06 PM.

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