September 15, 2011
It’s been years since I used a travel agent, but for a trip Mr. Karen and I are planning for next month, I decided to work with one for some of the arrangements because I’ve heard on podcasts about how they check for discounts that come out after you’ve booked and get those applied to your trip (and indeed the agency I chose says in their FAQ that they do exactly that). That sounded good to me—let someone who did that for a living keep up with all those changes. Too bad it’s not working out that way. I talked to my travel agent yesterday and exchanged several e-mails with her. Not too long before bedtime, I was poking around online and found a discount that looked like it could apply to my trip. I went to the resort’s website and put in our dates, our hotel, our room type, our admission tickets, and found I could save over $300 on our 3-night stay. What?! Why didn’t my agent say anything about that, even that she’d looked and it didn’t apply to us for some reason? If I’d made my own reservation, I could have canceled the more expensive one and booked the cheaper one online, but since I hadn’t, I couldn’t. I spent way too many hours last night with my brain churning about this, berating myself for giving up control, and feeling frustrated at my agent, especially since in the last e-mail she sent she mentioned she was heading out of town so I had no idea if I’d be able to get in touch with her. I did finally get her on the phone earlier today (after e-mailing, calling her phone, and calling the main office) and she said she’d call me back after she’d talked to the resort. So far, no call, no e-mail, nothing, and today is the last day to make changes to my reservation without incurring a penalty, so itâ€™s not like we can just take care of this next week. I am so frustrated! Yes, in the grand scope of things I’m super fortunate; this money won’t make the difference between us going and not going, and so many people can’t afford to take vacations at all, but I signed up for a service and Iâ€™m not getting it, and it’s annoying.
UPDATE 16-Sep-2011: I got a voice mail from the agent that said she had been able to get the discount for me, and she thanked me for my patience, so that all worked out.