Dallas travel agents give tips on booking vacations

Why should people plan a trip through a travel agency?

Lisette Garrett: "To get experienced information and to have someone to take care of any problems that might arise."

Polly Trapp: "We have the professional experience in traveling. And, we take responsibility for our clients while they're on the trip."

Casey Carr: "You pay the same as you do on the Internet, sometimes less. And, you have a local company that you can hold accountable and a local agent to walk you through the process.."

Do you plan all aspects of customers' trips?

Garrett: "Yes, we can."

Trapp: "Absolutely."

Carr: "Yep, we do."

How do you charge?

Garrett: "We have airline ticketing fees and tour fees. It depends on the situation."

Trapp: "We do have consultation fees. We have a set fee for corporate travel and it depends on the time involved for leisure."

Carr: "We make commissions through the vendors we use, and that doesn't cost the client."

What is your experience in the travel industry?

Garrett: "I've been in the business for over 20 years."

Trapp: "I've been in this industry for 37 years, so I've seen it change dramatically."

Carr: "We have 40 years experience, and our parent company has been in business since 1939."

How far in advance do people need to get their passport?

Garrett: "I would say three months in advance, but everybody should start getting a passport if they don't have one now."

Trapp: "Everyone should get a passport if they want to travel. It can take several months."

Carr: "At least two months, because you never know. Processing is taking about four weeks now, but you want to leave some time for error."

Do you recommend customers get trip insurance?

Garrett: "Yes."

Trapp: "Yes, I do."

Carr: "We always recommend travel insurance."

What's one place you recommend everyone should visit and why?

Garrett: "Everybody should have an experience in a different culture, whether it be Europe or Asia. Everyone should have a totally different experience than what they're used to."

Trapp: "Every American should visit Normandy, it's an incredibly moving experience. It's interesting historically and it's also a beautiful area of France."

Carr: "Africa. It's been a life changing experience for most of our clients. Africa is becoming westernized, and some of it's romance will go away as western comforts become mainstays."

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