In the age of online booking, apps and Google, we at Amadeus still believe in the value of a travel agent. Why? Because three decades ago, the global travel agency community served as a foundational partner with whom we built our business. This year, as Amadeus celebrates 30 years of innovation in travel technology, we proudly recognize the tens of thousands of travel professionals and agencies who, together with us, help keep the travel industry moving.
Here are six reasons why Amadeus loves top-performing travel professionals:
- They provide expert guidance. Like a personalized concierge, the best and brightest travel counselors help customers curate and repackage a dizzying array of options. Part data scientist, part lifestyle guru, these wizards continue to reinvent their role as they shift from providing information to offering personalized guidance.
- They offer value for the money. Travel professionals have access to promotions and specials that travelers do not. From cruise lines to hotels to tours, travel providers understand their top travel agents – and pass on upgrades, bonuses and special offers that make end-customers not only feel special, but save an average $452 per trip.
- They are humble. According to a recent USA Today article, confidence coupled with humility is a key combination for successful travel pros. Before the advent of online travel, the only way to book a cruise or complicated vacation like a honeymoon was to work with a brick-and-mortar agency. Some agents believed they were the only game in town. Over time, they learned otherwise. Smart travel professionals realize they are much more than order-takers who collect commission checks. They work hard for their customers and are committed to delivering 100% satisfaction.
- They possess strong destination knowledge. Brooklyn, NY-based Ariel Tours has been a leading player in Holy Land tourism since the mid-1960s. Founder Meir Weingarten and his team are extremely experienced in this niche; the average Ariel travel professional’s tenure is 10 years. “We know Israel and the travel industry intimately,” says Weingarten. “In our business, you can’t afford a 1% error rate; we strive for zero.”
- They display keen insight. In the case of leisure travelers for example, their perception of luxury changes – not just during their lifetime, but sometimes over a single vacation! Along their journeys, these travelers may alter their perceptions and norms. Savvy travel professionals understand this dynamic, and constantly monitor their customers’ wants, needs and expectations. They are adept, flexible and available – and know how to support and manage their customers in real time.
- They like working with us! Over the years, we’ve found that top-performing Amadeus travel professionals have a passion for innovation and a zest for learning. Industry-leading solutions like Amadeus Total Cruise and Amadeus Selling Platform Connect set them free from technology constraints, enable them to manage their businesses better, and help them book travel their way: anytime, anywhere, on any device!
In this 30th anniversary year, Amadeus salutes our travel agency partners who are helping make the travel industry better every day. We are excited to join them in facilitating better journeys for hundreds of millions of people every year. An African proverb says, “If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.” To the amazing travel professionals out there, Amadeus salutes you!
In your view, what is a travel counselor’s most important role?