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Throwing in the booking towel: no longer going to use my TA, and book directly with C&A


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11 hours ago, brillohead said:

It DEFINITELY depends on the TA.  A big box store or online agency is totally different than the experience you get with an individual TA that you actually know.  

 

I have been using the same on-line agency for twenty years and have only used two agents at the site.

 

When the first agent (Zack) became a manager, he was still handling his clients. Realizing that he probably had an increased workload, I asked if he would like to assign me to another agent that he knew would give the same caliber of service. He sent me to William.

 

William has been my on line agent for over ten years.  He (and Zack) has given me service that was equal to, and in two cases, superior to my local agents that I used to use.

 

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Very nice, but how responsive will that TA be if you have issues?  If you are shopping around for random TAs, you have no relationship with them.  Given the myriad of problems that can and are popping up currently, I want a TA I know has my back.  You got a great deal and I hope everything goes smoothly for you.  Me? I’ll stick with a known quantity who has proved their worth over time.

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6 hours ago, Coralc said:

Because you do. There are great TA's, as we know. But sometimes the time difference WC/EC is also difficult if we want to do something right away. 

 

I don't believe mine sleeps

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I always book direct online or on rare occasions on the ship. But it never gives me any perks. Being a younger generation, booking direct online is what I do and feel comfortable with. Yet I am more frustrated cruise by cruise because I basically get noting, no free onboard spending (unless you book onboard), no prepaid gratuities, no surprising voucher for thanking me booking online to save RCL agent fees...On one recent cruise, the onboard sales person was surprised that I do not have TA, because the person said a lot of people book in NextCruise and send the booking to their TA so the TA give perks like prepaid gratuities, drink packages etc. It made me feeling bad for save RCL agent fees.

 

Go figure.

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Wow.. this is terrible to hear.

 

I am thankful my TA is from a big box.

 

They are all working from home and are able to get to all my calls quickly. I have called them 3 separate occasions to jump on price drops and have had no issues.

 

ALSO the Only reason i use a TA is for the added bonuses and cash they always offer.

Edited by alexgtp
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I have an amazing TA that I actually met on a cruise years ago.  My friends now all use her as well.  When I email her, 99% of the time I get a response within 5 minutes.  She goes above and beyond for her clients.  Love her!!  

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I use a TA only for the perks.  Mine is pretty responsive, by email with 24 hours during the week.

 

There's pros and cons.  I missed upgrading to a royal suite because it was evening, the next day it was gone when the TA called.  

 

The OBC isn't enough when I book a normal balcony for the lack of control.  But if its an expensive river cruise or booking suites its enough to give up control.  So I guess it depends on the situation for me.  I don't get group bookings from her even though its a fairly large brick and mortar. So I'm still searching for the perfect one.  To be fair, when I find them, she does call and get me price drops.  But I have to find them....

 

I always book first what I want and then turn it over.  

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7 minutes ago, 2VaCruzers said:

I have an amazing TA that I actually met on a cruise years ago.  My friends now all use her as well.  When I email her, 99% of the time I get a response within 5 minutes.  She goes above and beyond for her clients.  Love her!!  

I also met my TA on a cruise.  At the time he was just a CC member but he has since become a TA.  Great guy!!!

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11 hours ago, Coralc said:

 

Thanks Ash. No. That one is Customer Service. They used to list Post Cruise on the website, but of course I didn't write it down. The only 2 they list now (probably Covid) are the one you listed and (866) 562-7625 for individual reservations. Which just seems like another general number. 

 

I still have the letter from the original issue FCC, (2019) and it is typical of their Cut & Paste. The letter says problem on Oasis. (we were on Vision-sewage flooding twice) The phone number is shown as 01 932 834 119. So I know I found a working number at the time. I just didn't write it on the dumb letter. :classic_biggrin:

 

EDIT: Thanks. Maybe I will try Customer Service next time. :classic_smile:

Let me try and give you another number.

(800) 205-9812 Customer Outreach Team

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16 hours ago, poocher said:

I’ve never CALLED my TA for a price drop or really anything.  Quick email, she normally gets back to me within 24 hrs with whatever I’ve asked answered/fixed/adjusted usually later the same day.  Why would you want to be on hold while they’re on hold with RCCL?  

I have no access to my TA by email.

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16 hours ago, Coralc said:

3 way calls stink. But I was on hold with Royal Caribbean for over an hour yesterday. It was to get a FCC re-issued and applied to a future cruise. So Customer Service had to call Post Cruise Guest Relations. (Which I used to have a phone number for). It all worked out eventually. It was fine, I just read a magazine and listened to the ads. :classic_biggrin: What I didn't like is that the clarity on their home cell phones seem to degrade and get all staticky. He eventually "refreshed" the line and the clarity was better. 

I'm glad I've got good company..........😉

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11 hours ago, molly361 said:

My TA is great- quick email and he takes care of everything.  I also don't understand why you had to wait on hold to do everything.  

Big Box TA.  Only phone calls unless you're cancelling.

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My TA is great and like @John&LaLa said I doubt he sleeps.  I've emailed in the morning and I've emailed late at night and I don't think I've ever waited more than an hour for a response.  The odd time I've called, he answered the phone.  I don't think I've heard his voicemail.  Sometimes I find a price drop and email him and get a new invoice by day's end.  Other times he has found the price drop and surprised me with a savings.  My first TA was worthless and I had given up on TA's and booked direct.  Now that I have found this one I'll never go back.  

 

To the OP... sorry for your frustration.  I can sympathize as I had a bad one before.

Edited by Tree_skier
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14 minutes ago, Tree_skier said:

My TA is great and like @John&LaLa said I doubt he sleeps.  I've emailed in the morning and I've emailed late at night and I don't think I've ever waited more than an hour for a response.  The odd time I've called, he answered the phone.  I don't think I've heard his voicemail.  Sometimes I find a price drop and email him and get a new invoice by day's end.  Other times he has found the price drop and surprised me with a savings.  My first TA was worthless and I had given up on TA's and booked direct.  Now that I have found this one I'll never go back.  

 

To the OP... sorry for your frustration.  I can sympathize as I had a bad one before.


I work overnights (I'm a nurse) and I'll email him after midnight and get a response, or at 5am and get a response.  

Starting to think he's an Android like Data on Star Trek, TNG!

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2 hours ago, cruiselvr04 said:

I'm still searching for the perfect one. [travel agent].  To be fair, when I find [price drops], she does call and get me price drops.  But I have to find them....   I always book first what I want and then turn it over.

 

Every time I've gotten a price drop, or a Lift&Shift, I figured everything out myself, then emailed her with all the info, and let her contact Royal.  She has sometimes expected that Royal would not grant the request, but all have gone through.  One time I had to send her a screenshot of the page showing the pricing from RCCL.  It sometimes seems as if she knows less about the "rules" than I have been able to find here on CC or on the RCCL website.

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5 hours ago, 2VaCruzers said:

I have an amazing TA that I actually met on a cruise years ago.  My friends now all use her as well.  When I email her, 99% of the time I get a response within 5 minutes.  She goes above and beyond for her clients.  Love her!!  


Hello from a fellow Virginian!  My niece and her husband and baby live in Chantilly, so I’ve driven past Centreville many times on my way to visit them. 
 

I wish we had private messaging on CC because I’d like to ask you a question. If you don’t mind, could you email me at cef8n@yahoo.com?  

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9 hours ago, poocher said:

Very nice, but how responsive will that TA be if you have issues?  If you are shopping around for random TAs, you have no relationship with them.  Given the myriad of problems that can and are popping up currently, I want a TA I know has my back.  You got a great deal and I hope everything goes smoothly for you.  Me? I’ll stick with a known quantity who has proved their worth over time.

 

Some TA's are incredible and others are merely average. There are precious few bad TA's thankfully. In my case I am knowingly downgrading the customer service I have access to in exchange for $1800. I'll pay that.

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16 hours ago, spooky981 said:

Always book directly with RCL, then shop around for TA's that give you the greatest rebate or OBC. Transfer to the one you like best. The key is to already have the reservation made because then the TA's know there's not much work to be done. They tend to be more generous.

 

In August I booked a suite for $16,000.00. I shopped around to about a dozen travel agents and the best offer was a $1,700.00 rebate plus $350 onboard credit. All I did was give her my reservation number and it was transferred within an hour.

 

Just be mindful that you only have like 30 or 60 days or something like that after booking to transfer to a TA.

This is exactly what I have done for many years now- we have saved thousands of dollars.  People who use TAs without their  TAs  rebating them some of the $$$$ have been bamboozled!  RC is giving them big $$ for their bookings, and the best ones are sending some of those dollars right back to the clients.  Spooky, should we give them the website to get the TAs out there to compete against themselves to give the best deals?  

 

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12 hours ago, molly361 said:

I also met my TA on a cruise.  At the time he was just a CC member but he has since become a TA.  Great guy!!!

But does he give you amazing OBCs or rebates on the cruises you have booked?  It makes a HUGE difference-they are making a ton of money that they can be sharing with you.

 

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