by Eric Hrubant
The phones are ringing off the hook… And I couldn’t be happier! Travel is back and the feeling of hope is almost palpable. As your trusted travel advisor, my top priority is to equip you with the knowledge you need to travel safely, comfortably, and confidently. Our clients trust us to have their back and handle every aspect of their business trip or vacation. Not using a professional travel agent yet? You should be! Let me answer some frequently asked questions about working with a concierge-style travel agency.
QUESTION: Should I use a travel agent?
ANSWER: YES! But of course, we’re biased. Using a professional travel advisor will save you time, money and hassle. Working with a travel agent will also get you perks, upgrades and benefits when you travel.
When flights are overbooked or delayed. When the hotel has no record of your room reservation. When traffic is bad, and a missed flight is imminent. When the umpteenth call to the airlines gets you nowhere. When the gate agent has a mile-long line. When weather threatens to ground all planes. The only thing you want to hear is that someone is handling it. Someone knows what’s going on. Someone is taking care of you. That someone is me or one of my amazing professional travel advisors at CIRE.
QUESTION: How will working with a travel advisor save me time?
ANSWER: Next time your trolling the online airline or hotel aggregators for flights and rooms, start the stopwatch on your iPhone. By the time you fall down the rabbit hole, comparing this site to that site to the airlines and hotel sites themselves, hours have passed and you just lost half of your Saturday.
QUESTION: But I like doing the research on where to go, stay and eat…for me, planning is half the fun! Should I still use a travel agent?
ANSWER: Absolutely! We love the research and anticipation before a trip, too. We have some clients that know exactly where they want to go, what hotel they want to stay at, etc. They still use CIRE to book every aspect of their trip. But instead of the aforementioned hours lost looking for the right connection or the best room, you just tell your CIRE advisor and we use our secure, command-driven system to find you the best options in no time. One of the best things about having CIRE as your luxury travel planner is that you can be as hands-on or hands-off as you wish.
QUESTION: How will working with a travel agent save me money?
ANSWER: The mere fact that CIRE is a travel agency unlocks connections, savings and perks that aren’t readily doled out to the general public. When you book a vacation, you’re going to a hotel that you will likely only visit once in your life. We book thousands of hotel rooms each year. Complimentary breakfast, food and beverage credits, spa credits, early check-in, room upgrades, welcome amenities (red, white or rose?)…these are just some of the perks you can get when working with a travel agent.
QUESTION: What does “concierge-style” travel agency mean anyway?
ANSWER: When visiting a new country, I’ve gotten some of the best restaurant recommendations from the hotel concierge. Your CIRE Travel advisor aims to be that expert who provides you with the best tips and insider knowledge. Yes, we book flights, hotels, trains and cars. Yes, we know all the entry requirements for every destination around the world. Yes, we know Covid protocols for each country as well as what individual hotels are doing to keep guests safe. But we also have connections around the world who know all the best kept secrets in their destination. CIRE holds the keys that opens these “travel industry insider” doors.
QUESTION: I thought CIRE only did business travel. Do you do vacations, too?
ANSWER: You bet we do! Our vacation and honeymoon division was even awarded the coveted “Best of Weddings” award from The Knot for our honeymoon planning. We also plan travel for your company off-site, corporate meetings and group travel.
QUESTION: What are the benefits of using a professional travel advisor?
ANSWER: Think of CIRE as your invisible entourage. Our travel advisors are behind the scenes attending to the details—some you’ll see, some you won’t. We’re dropping names to get those perks and amenities that’ll make your vacation, business trip, corporate meeting or event wildly successful. We’re pulling strings to handle any changes in plans or issues that pop up. Your CIRE travel agent will be readily available to handle every aspect of the travel reservation process – from hotel accommodations to air and ground transportation – and we’re just a phone call or email away. If a problem pops up beyond business hours, our 24-hour, year-round After-Hours Desk provides emergency support to travelers anywhere in the world.
QUESTION: Do you charge a fee?
ANSWER: Yes, CIRE charges a professional fee based on the complexity of your trip. After an initial, complementary consultation call, we will be able to provide you with the amount of the professional fee for that specific trip. A simple trip where you already know where you want to go and maybe stay, will cost less than an extended trip where we do all of the research, etc. Drop us an email, let us know about the type of trip you’re looking for, and we can set up a quick call and give you a quote.
Need more convincing? Don’t take it from us…read some testimonials from our clients and find out why they all say #ionlytravelwithCIRE!