From natural disasters to terrorist attacks, safety when travelling remains a priority for outbound South African travellers. While no one organisation or destination can guarantee visitor safety, don’t allow fear to stop you from having the enriching experiences only travel can bring. Instead, maximise your peace of mind when travelling and minimise risk by booking a travel agent.
Global booking patterns show that tech-savvy millennials are driving the resurgence of the travel agent. Recent figures shared by the American Society of Travel Advisors (ASTA) show 55% of millennials are most likely to use a travel agent, advisor, consultant or travel expert, as many qualified professionals prefer. That’s compared to just 42% of Gen Xers and 28% of Baby Boomers.
Travel and hospitality company MMGY Global reported after its 2018 study that 33% of Millennials ‘will use a travel agency in the next two years’. Here’s why:
They provide on the ground guidance: Often the media can sensationalise or distort details of or after an incident. An earthquake off one coastline, for example, doesn’t mean that the other side of the country is affected at all. Sue Garrett, General Manager of Marketing and Product at the Flight Centre Travel Group said travel agents have access to ground operators and global networks of contacts and partners that the average traveller simply won’t have access to. “This is incredibly valuable when considering, researching, booking and travelling to a destination that you may be unsure of.”
Emergency contacts on hand: In a foreign country, where you may not have data or signal, face language barriers or struggle to get hold of your embassy, a travel advisor is contactable. Be sure to save those details in multiple places before departing. Just don’t call your travel advisor at 3 am wanting to change your flight in three days when it’s not an actual emergency.