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Still don't see why I should use a TA...

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On 8/11/2019 at 9:18 AM, h-sar said:

 

 

I believe Princess does not allow travel agents to discount their prices? 

No cruise line allows agents to discount the cruise line price.

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Just now, Bennett'sCruise said:

No cruise line allows agents to discount the cruise line price.

What they can do is give you OBC, a gift card, rebate, etc.  And for most cruisers $100 of unrestricted OBC is the same as discounting the cruise by $100.

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On 8/12/2019 at 5:34 PM, chipmaster said:

TA is totally YMMV, to be honest you think TA come from the the a deeply trained and highly intelligent pool?  

 

 

 

Not sure what YMMV means …. but the rest of your statement is offensive.  My goodness.

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Posted (edited)
1 minute ago, Bennett'sCruise said:

Not sure what YMMV means …. but the rest of your statement is offensive.  My goodness.

Your mileage may vary.  

Edited by ed01106

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5 minutes ago, ed01106 said:

What they can do is give you OBC, a gift card, rebate, etc.  And for most cruisers $100 of unrestricted OBC is the same as discounting the cruise by $100.

Understood.  But it's not the same as an agent "discounting" the price.  There are actually several ways an agent can give you perks.  If you want to consider it a discount, that's okay I guess. 

 

By the way, some OBC is given directly by the agent out of their commission (out of their pocket).  If you are on a very low-end cruise, that commission can be only $50.  Can you (not speaking to ed01106 here) expect the agent who has done much more than $50 worth of work for you, to give up their entire commission?  

 

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5 minutes ago, Bennett'sCruise said:

Understood.  But it's not the same as an agent "discounting" the price.  There are actually several ways an agent can give you perks.  If you want to consider it a discount, that's okay I guess. 

 

By the way, some OBC is given directly by the agent out of their commission (out of their pocket).  If you are on a very low-end cruise, that commission can be only $50.  Can you (not speaking to ed01106 here) expect the agent who has done much more than $50 worth of work for you, to give up their entire commission?  

 

I get that.  My reason for using a TA is in post #97.  A website with little overhead can afford to give a huge chunk of the commission back in OBC and still be profitable on volume.   A local TA with real people can’t.  DW once asked ours about marching the OBC on the web, she said she would but her facial expression changed.  I asked her why she was pouting, she told us the company will match the competitions OBC to keep the business but her commission (not the companies what is in her paycheck) would be $1.38.  We told her not to bother with the OBC.  (this was only a few weeks after her quick thinking meant I got to sleep in a bed instead of the airport lounge during a snowstorm). 

 

It really comes down to what you want.  Some TAs that are little more than web based booking centers can get you a discount/rebate.  Other TAs can be your travel assistant.  None can do both.

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54 minutes ago, Bennett'sCruise said:

No cruise line allows agents to discount the cruise line price.

That's not true. While most do not permit you to advertise a discounted price many cruise lines do allow you to actually discount the fare. I know this from both personal experience as a former travel agency owner and as a cruiser.

 

I just booked a cruise last week on a mass market cruise line and was offered a discount by the TA I booked with.

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11 minutes ago, njhorseman said:

That's not true. While most do not permit you to advertise a discounted price many cruise lines do allow you to actually discount the fare. I know this from both personal experience as a former travel agency owner and as a cruiser.

 

I just booked a cruise last week on a mass market cruise line and was offered a discount by the TA I booked with.

You, as a former TA, should understand the "back office" dealings that cruise lines offer to larger agencies (online and brick and mortar).  Probably volume based.  I also believe the cruise lines work with these humongous agencies to give them good pricing that no one else can touch and the agencies do NOT pass along the entire savings to the client.

 

In my experience, I've found that once the cruise get booked, the humongous  TA's monitor the pricing the cruise line gives (watches for cruise line price drops), rebooks the voyage for their client at the new lower price and KEEPS 100% of the savings.  The client never knows there has been a price drop they could/should have benefited from.

 

I'm aware of at least one small brick and mortar TA who does the same monitoring of cruise line pricing after getting the booking and gives the client 100% of that savings.  Probably not considered "good business" as her commission goes down with the lower price.  But, worth it in customer satisfaction.

 

I'm not a fan of the online, big box store, or humongous agencies … can you tell?     

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1 hour ago, Bennett'sCruise said:

Not sure what YMMV means …. but the rest of your statement is offensive.  My goodness.

 

When we started and were naive we went the three sources to price out cruises and got variation in service, TPT, pricing and lots of confusing FUD ( brick-mortar TA, big box high volume package deals,  multiple internet sellers ).

 

Guess which group provided the slowest response, most confusing response, sometimes plain out wrong information that could be confirmed in a few minutes on my own, conclusion was easy where I'd shop going forward 

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1 minute ago, chipmaster said:

 

When we started and were naive we went the three sources to price out cruises and got variation in service, TPT, pricing and lots of confusing FUD ( brick-mortar TA, big box high volume package deals,  multiple internet sellers ).

 

Guess which group provided the slowest response, most confusing response, sometimes plain out wrong information that could be confirmed in a few minutes on my own, conclusion was easy where I'd shop going forward 

Hmmmm … have you ever gotten conflicting pieces of information from the cruise line reps themselves?  It happens.  It's frustrating.  I get that.  But alluding to the person as being "less than" is just not nice.  

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On 8/13/2019 at 9:48 AM, lenquixote66 said:

 

 On the first sea day of a cruise I wear a Born In Brooklyn tee shirt.That generates a lot of conversation.

 

 

I wear my most prized piece of clothing.   A Clippers #24 World B. Free T-shirt.  😀  I'm always surprised at how many guys recognize it.  It has been around the world and is still holding up well.   Before  that I had a Hobie T-shirt that I really liked.  It got so tattered Mrs Ldubs finally convinced me it had to go in the  rag pile.  I miss that T shirt!  

 

 

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14 minutes ago, Bennett'sCruise said:

 

I'm aware of at least one small brick and mortar TA who does the same monitoring of cruise line pricing after getting the booking and gives the client 100% of that savings.  Probably not considered "good business" as her commission goes down with the lower price.  But, worth it in customer satisfaction.

 

My TA does this for us.  Only happened once. DW asked her if the price drop cost her commission and how much.  Next day, DW sent her a thank you note with a gift card worth about 150% of her lost commission, the gift card cost us only a fraction of what we saved with the lower fare.  

 

 

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3 minutes ago, ldubs said:

 

I wear my most prized piece of clothing.   A Clippers #24 World B. Free T-shirt.  😀  I'm always surprised at how many guys recognize it.  It has been around the world and is still holding up well.   Before  that I had a Hobie T-shirt that I really liked.  It got so tattered Mrs Ldubs finally convinced me it had to go in the  rag pile.  I miss that T shirt!  

 

 

World B Free aka Lloyd Free graduated from Canarsie HS in Brooklyn,the area I lived in.

i had the opportunity to see him as well as John Sally .

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9 minutes ago, lenquixote66 said:

World B Free aka Lloyd Free graduated from Canarsie HS in Brooklyn,the area I lived in.

i had the opportunity to see him as well as John Sally .

 

Wow!  Your best friend is correct.  I never met Free personally but it is still fair to say we have something in common and it didn't even take 2 hours!  

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4 minutes ago, ldubs said:

 

Wow!  Your best friend is correct.  I never met Free personally but it is still fair to say we have something in common and it didn't even take 2 hours!  

Are you familiar with the Hall Of Fame basketball player Roger Brown ?He played in Brooklyn as well and in 2011 I contributed to the making of a documentary about him .The film was shown in theaters and was on PBS stations. It is currently on You Tube .I believe that every basketball fan should see this film.

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6 minutes ago, lenquixote66 said:

Are you familiar with the Hall Of Fame basketball player Roger Brown ?He played in Brooklyn as well and in 2011 I contributed to the making of a documentary about him .The film was shown in theaters and was on PBS stations. It is currently on You Tube .I believe that every basketball fan should see this film.

 

Sadly I am not.  Is the documentary named "Undefeated-the Roger Brown Story"?  

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Just now, ldubs said:

 

Sadly I am not.  Is the documentary named "Undefeated-the Roger Brown Story"?  

Yes,that is the name .Many basketball players appear in the film .Roger played for the Indiana Pacers.Although my name appears in the credits I do not gain anything monetarily for the film. I got a free copy of the DVD and a hand written letter from the Director of the film thanking me for my contribution which was 45 conversations ,phone and e-mail.I had a very good friendship with Roger .Unfortunately he passed away in 1997 .

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16 hours ago, TruckerDave said:

Another TA vs No TA thread.....these always seem to end the same. The pro and anti TA folks just going back and forth and not getting anywhere or solving anything other than increasing the "post counts" of members.   Pretty much the same as the threads about southwest airlines being "cheaper" and  the "take passport off the ship or not". they just end up with the same folks saying the same things over and over. 

 

No.  It is more like the difference between people who walk into a new car lot and pay full sticker price vs. people who negotiate and save hundreds, or thousands, of dollars.  And then having the list price payer lament that they still don't understand why people negotiate.

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9 minutes ago, lenquixote66 said:

Yes,that is the name .Many basketball players appear in the film .Roger played for the Indiana Pacers.Although my name appears in the credits I do not gain anything monetarily for the film. I got a free copy of the DVD and a hand written letter from the Director of the film thanking me for my contribution which was 45 conversations ,phone and e-mail.I had a very good friendship with Roger .Unfortunately he passed away in 1997 .

 

Thank you for the info.  Sounds like something I might enjoy watching.  Might have to ask Mrs Ldubs to see if she can download it for an upcoming flight.   

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1 minute ago, ldubs said:

 

Thank you for the info.  Sounds like something I might enjoy watching.  Might have to ask Mrs Ldubs to see if she can download it for an upcoming flight.   

I have recommended the film to many people since it came out. Everyone has enjoyed it.If you do get to see it please let me know if you liked it.

 

Lenny

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2 hours ago, Bennett'sCruise said:

No cruise line allows agents to discount the cruise line price.

 

So, group booking prices of large agencies don't exist?  Even though hundreds of posters and TAs say they exist?

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11 minutes ago, Toofarfromthesea said:

 

So, group booking prices of large agencies don't exist?  Even though hundreds of posters and TAs say they exist?

We have been on many cruises that we got a lower price because the TA booked groups.

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1 hour ago, Bennett'sCruise said:

You, as a former TA, should understand the "back office" dealings that cruise lines offer to larger agencies (online and brick and mortar).  Probably volume based.  I also believe the cruise lines work with these humongous agencies to give them good pricing that no one else can touch and the agencies do NOT pass along the entire savings to the client.

 

In my experience, I've found that once the cruise get booked, the humongous  TA's monitor the pricing the cruise line gives (watches for cruise line price drops), rebooks the voyage for their client at the new lower price and KEEPS 100% of the savings.  The client never knows there has been a price drop they could/should have benefited from.

 

I'm aware of at least one small brick and mortar TA who does the same monitoring of cruise line pricing after getting the booking and gives the client 100% of that savings.  Probably not considered "good business" as her commission goes down with the lower price.  But, worth it in customer satisfaction.

 

I'm not a fan of the online, big box store, or humongous agencies … can you tell?     

Yes, I'm well aware of the of the fact that top producing agencies often have advantageous arrangements with cruise lines.

As a consumer you are not privy to the details of these arrangements, nor do you have any right to be. Why would you expect that the entire amount of any advantageous pricing arrangements should be passed on to the consumer? It doesn't work that way in any business. If my appliance store is one of the leading sellers of XYZ brand refrigerators and can buy them more cheaply from from the distributor than most other stores why should I pass that entire difference on to you? I'm still selling them to you for less than you would pay elsewhere, and making a bit more profit at the same time. This is known as capitalism.

 

I'm not concerned about a travel agency keeping track of the pricing of a cruise. As a consumer I'm doing that on my own, so I'll know if and when a price drops significantly and I'll make sure the agency rebooks it to my benefit.

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2 hours ago, Toofarfromthesea said:

 

So, group booking prices of large agencies don't exist?  Even though hundreds of posters and TAs say they exist?

I'm not talking about group pricing.  Completely different discussion.

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2 hours ago, njhorseman said:

Yes, I'm well aware of the of the fact that top producing agencies often have advantageous arrangements with cruise lines.

As a consumer you are not privy to the details of these arrangements, nor do you have any right to be. Why would you expect that the entire amount of any advantageous pricing arrangements should be passed on to the consumer? It doesn't work that way in any business. If my appliance store is one of the leading sellers of XYZ brand refrigerators and can buy them more cheaply from from the distributor than most other stores why should I pass that entire difference on to you? I'm still selling them to you for less than you would pay elsewhere, and making a bit more profit at the same time. This is known as capitalism.

 

I'm not concerned about a travel agency keeping track of the pricing of a cruise. As a consumer I'm doing that on my own, so I'll know if and when a price drops significantly and I'll make sure the agency rebooks it to my benefit.

You know … you and I are on the same side of this discussion.   I agree with most everything you say.  I guess you are just saying it more succinctly  

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