Jump to content

Recommended Posts

Maybe the travel agents are busy. I don't know. What is your experience when contacting your agent about booking a cruise? How long between the time you contact the agent and the time you get a response? I'm trying to decide if I need to find another agent.

Link to post
Share on other sites

It would depend upon the question. If it were a general question - such as destinations, what lines sail the Med (or the Caribbean) or how long a trans-Atlantic crossing might take, I would expect an answer within the same conversation.   If it involved specifics, such as what ports a Med itinerary might hit, or suggestions for particular itinerary - perhaps two days —- much longer in either case would signal disinterest or ignorance.

Link to post
Share on other sites

One of the reasons I stick with my travel agent is that I get a response within 24 -hours, 7 days a week, even when she is cruising.  Often it is within a few hours of my e-mail request. This is especially important if you want a specific room on a cruise, especially if it is a highly desirable room.  

Link to post
Share on other sites

Also,, if the question you're asking is one (s)he has to get a reply for from the cruise line, that can sometimes take longer than you would expect. Our agent is always right on top of everything, but a while back she called me back two days later saying she was still waiting for a reply from the line. Nice that she kept me in the loop,  even though  as she didn't have the answer yet.

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Unless on holiday, when she has an out of office notification and an alternate agent to assist with time sensitive issues, our TA mostly responds within an 1 to 2 hrs, but never more than 24 hrs.

Link to post
Share on other sites

My TA (friend) was temporarily laid off in her 2 person brick and mortar store, but she is still taking bookings (she’s drawing unemployment). I texted her on Fri at dinner time with a price drop on one of my cruises. She had called Royal and got the changes and texted me back in a 1/2 hour. I don’t get anything booking with her, but it’s times like this I appreciate.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I only call our TA during business hours. If he's busy with another customer, I get a call back within the hour. If he's away, there is always a backup agent to handle questions/problems.

Link to post
Share on other sites

First, we have to distinguish between just getting a call back, and waiting for them to get you an answer on a particular question.

Second, by the time I need to speak to an agent the parameters and quote have already been set in place and I am calling (or they are calling me, at a specified time) to do the actual booking.  That is generally the only time I have spoken to the agent.  Everything else happens by email.

Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, calestultz said:

Maybe the travel agents are busy. I don't know. What is your experience when contacting your agent about booking a cruise? How long between the time you contact the agent and the time you get a response? I'm trying to decide if I need to find another agent.

More than once I have called a TA ,left a message and did not get a response.

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Ashland said:

 I don't use one...I call the cruise line directly and they answer.

I book with the cruise line rep and get good prices and then I transfer to a TA for gratuities. If there's any question I start with the cruise line. Worked so far.

Link to post
Share on other sites

My agent or her partner answers the phone.  If it goes to voice mail she calls back within half an hour.  She is a gem.  No question is too minor that I could not ask her.  I have used her for over ten years.  I hope she NEVER RETIRES!!!

Link to post
Share on other sites

Within hours, often less.  Voice or email.  

 

Overnight would not work for us.  We often book last minute.  Prices change, cabins sell.

 

Once we called in the evening.  Her phone was picked up by someone else.  Turned out to be the VP of all people.   He was covering shifts as they were short staffed.

Link to post
Share on other sites

The high volume agencies I use (3 of them) all work in a similar manner.  I have my own cruise agent with whom there is a lot of mutual trust.  But agents do work specific hours and days and they also take vacations :).  My agencies also have a staffed customer service desk that is always functioning and if there is an issue I need to deal with quickly, a can just route my call to the customer service desk who will make sure my assigned agent is made aware of the call and issue for any needed follow-up.

 

There have also been a few times when I needed to services of a skilled agent when my own agent was on vacation or out of the office.   When that happens another agent will immediately deal with the problem and I will later hear from my own agent when she/he is back in the office.  

 

Hank

Link to post
Share on other sites
18 hours ago, lenquixote66 said:

More than once I have called a TA ,left a message and did not get a response.

I hope you did not let it happen more than twice.  Failing to return a call one time can be written off -- two or more times reflects incompetence or disinterest, neither of which is desirable in a travel agent.

Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, navybankerteacher said:

I hope you did not let it happen more than twice.  Failing to return a call one time can be written off -- two or more times reflects incompetence or disinterest, neither of which is desirable in a travel agent.

I had that problem with three different travel agents that were highly recommended to me.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, lenquixote66 said:

I had that problem with three different travel agents that were highly recommended to me.

Well, if it is a matter of calling an agent out of the blue with a detailed question, the agent may think that you are just looking for free information and decide not to get involved.  I agree - it is discourteous to not return a call - but I think there is a significant difference between expected responses from an agent you are already working with or from one you have never dealt with.

Edited by navybankerteacher
Link to post
Share on other sites
16 minutes ago, navybankerteacher said:

Well, if it is a matter of calling an agent out of the blue with a detailed question, the agent may think that you are just looking for free information and decide not to get involved.  I agree - it is discourteous to not return a call - but I think there is a significant difference between expected responses from an agent you are already working with or from one you have never dealt with.

The first one was recommended by a guy on another cruise board that I posted on prior to CC.He posted that his wife was a TA and many people called her and did not receive call backs.

The second was recommended by a neighbor.I called and said who referred me and that my wife and I wanted to book a cruise with him.

Third was a woman who lives in my development who had a flyer on a community board listing her as a TA .I called and said I am a resident of the condo and left my number.She never called me back.

 

 

 

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
On 4/19/2021 at 12:05 PM, calestultz said:

How long between the time you contact the agent and the time you get a response?

Usually 1 hour or less (unless she's at the gym 😉). Very rarely 2 hours. Every day. 

Edited by dobiemom
Link to post
Share on other sites

Usually the same day or, if it is late in the day, the next day. Generally, I send a email with a specific question. I usually don't expect a response on the weekend especially when it concerns my cruise booking because Windstar's offices are only available on weekdays. But she usually drops me an email anyway to let me know she will contact Windstar on Monday. If I phone, we usually talk then or if she is unavailable she calls back in an hour or two. 

 

I wouldn't keep working with a TA that was sluggish or non-responsive.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • Thank You for 25 Years - Click for Fun Stuff!
      • Forum Assistance
      • ANNOUNCEMENT: American Queen Steamboat Company
      • ICYM Our Cruise Critic Live Special Event: Explore the Remote World with Hurtigruten!
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • Canadian Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×
×
  • Create New...