Tuesday, August 25, 2015

How a Travel Agent Works for You and Your Next Snow Trip

Here are excerpts from an article I came across today written by a travel agent who expertly articulates how we can save you time and money.

Please credit Ms. Sally Black, founder and Mom Executive Officer of www.vacationkids.com published by Huff Post Travel 21 August 2015.
Ms. Black says:
"When people find out what I do for a living, weird things often happen...
Some will tilt their heads to one side and ask "Do Travel Agents still exist?" as if they were magically staring into the eyes of a unicorn. Others will immediately start over-sharing every travel nightmare they, and everyone on the Internet have ever experienced. Finally there are the folks that hit you up with a rapid fire, laundry list of questions like a hypochondriac during a doctor's visit. The other ever popular response is "Wow, so you must get to like travel all over the world for free-right?"
Truth be told, I have the best, most misunderstood job in the world. It's true, most people have no idea how travel agents work and how they can help. Hopefully, I can help clear up some of this confusion by explaining things about what we do....
Most desperate vacation-seekers, take the knee jerk reaction of heading online to make their reservations. The lure of Internet convenience and control quickly turns into confusion, indecisiveness and anxiety not to mention a huge time suck. How do I know?...because not a day goes by that I don't receive emails pleading for help from these exact problems from would-be vacationers.
Think of a travel agent as your tour guide that will lead you to the perfect vacation.

If you've ever wondered what a day in the life of a travel agent is like, here's a bit more about what we're all about and how we help our clients.... 
Travel Agents are "All Inclusive" - Hotels, vacation package companies... all include travel agent commissions in their published prices. If you do all the work yourself online, they "pocket" the difference. Using the services of a travel agent means you get the customer service you deserve. You won't be spending hours on the Internet, hanging on phone hold for eternity or wasting any precious time wondering and worrying. Comment by Joyce at Snow Sport.. This is true 10-fold with a snow destination vacation.. Imagine the time it takes to go to 5 different places on the Internet and gather your flights, lodging, lift tickets, rental car, and equipment rentals.  Now imagine having it all done for you :-) AND... fees are either minimal or non-existent, yay!
Travel Agents Match Online Prices - Some people just enjoy planning their own vacations. These are probably the same folks who like putting together IKEA furniture. No matter, make yourself happy find your best price and email us all the details. Your travel agent will either be able to match it or tell you why you're setting yourself up for a scam... It's a win-win. The guest gets to do exactly what they want while having us do all the follow up, follow thru while making suggestions to enhance their enjoyment. Comment by Joyce again... Count on us for the best value, best price.
Travel Agents Have Rates That You Don't - Travel agents are privy to special flight prices, special hotel... rates that consumers will never find online themselves. This feature alone will save you money.
Travel Agents Save You Time - Time in our most precious commodity and yet so many people are willing to waste it. HOURS can be spent properly researching a vacation. With the amount of conflicting information available online, it's easy to quickly get overwhelmed and confused. Many times, the questions perplexing travelers are one that agents can answer right off the top of our heads thanks to our years of experience. If you have detailed questions or need to plan a complicated itinerary, we do all the work for you...

Travel Agents Understand The Fine Print- Most people don't bother reading any of the fine print terms and conditions of their travel documents until it's too late. This is what "trips" them up (pun intended) and costs them big bucks in the long term. Even if folks do stop to read it, they fully understand all the implications. Travel Agents are well versed in these rules, terms and conditions. We can help navigate and protect your family and investment. By Joyce: Trip insurance is easy to arrange and we have been able to purchase it for our customers for as little as 3% of the vacation cost. We'll tell you all the 'nasty' stuff in that fine print and help protect YOU!
Travel Agents Have Contacts - ....We know exactly who to speak to in order to make special requests for our clients. This could mean things like connecting rooms, welcome gifts or advanced restaurant reservations. These relationships have proved priceless in emergency situations.
Travel Agents Have Priceless Advice - First hand experience and knowledge are what will change a typical vacation into a real memorable experience.... good travel agents have a "golden network" and know exactly who to call to get the answers their clients need." Joyce: We know the snow business.  We live here, we play here, and we work here.  If you need something, our source is never 'nameless'.  We know exactly who to call for you!
Let Snow Sport be your expert, time-saving, snow vacation planner!
Chill Out,

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

The Fall Semester - Taking Your Kid Back to College

Summer is nearing its end. It is my job to remind you that now it is time to contact us to plan your next snow vacation... OK, done!  But what's really going on?  If you have kids, lots!

It's the college kids that seem to have the greatest impact.  They live with you for what seems like forever, and then they finally leave and are certain to contact you only when they need something like money or plane tickets.  They'll let you know when they were mistreated by the 'cruel' world. For instance, when the professor gave them that horrible grade, or the roommate's sister stole their expensive shoes and so on. But... for the most part.... they are SILENT.  Then they come home for the summer....

We've all just lived it.  They are no longer our 'children'.  They are now our roommates who do not pay rent, never fill the tank with gas or clean any of the dishes.  They certainly don't offer to do your laundry - you only hope they do their own while they reside in such close proximity.  And they come and go as they please, perhaps even disappearing for days at a time without a care in the world.

And what do WE do??? We take it!  We become their servants and spend 3 months tiptoeing about, even though we pay the mortgage, fill the refrigerator as well as the gas tank.

Moving forth, here's what we ALL get to do in the coming weeks:

  • Take them to mall with an extra-long list of everything they could ever need or want.
  • Have the student vehicle serviced, detailed, inspected and prepared for complete neglect over the next several months. The fuel tank will be full the day we deliver them to campus and empty the next time we see it, and the next, and the next, etc.
  • Log the dorm move-in date and then alter everything on our regular schedule to accommodate the trip. Then we reserve all emotion when the college kid asks us "What day we leaving?" roughly 48 hours prior to departure.  With our answer, they subsequently disappear until the moment of departure so they might have those last cherished moments with the friends they complained about throughout high school.  We get to pack the car. 

  • Upon arrival, we proceed to 'clean' the entire domicile, cause there is absolutely no way someone else could have satisfactorily prepared living quarters for our precious offspring.

  • We unpack with little assistance from the owner of all this stuff and make endless trips to Bed, Bath and Beyond for the proper storage containers cause the University couldn't possibly do it right.  In reality, those items will be unloaded into those new receptacles only that one single time, cause once we leave, anything worn or used will be retired to one large pile somewhere on or under the bed.

  • Last you stage a last chance family dinner near campus, hand the kid a wad of cash, remind them of everything they should do for great success and head back to start planning their next trip home.... 
Remember, you just got your house back!!! Let me help plan the next reunion on the snow..  We hope to see you soon!


Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Did it Snow Yet???

Not much to talk about yet, but this will be a great source to see how things are going from your hometown:

Looking forward :-)


Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Happy Birthday Colorado

Did you know that Colorado just turned 139 years? And it still looks beautiful!

Colorado Day, the anniversary of the day President Ulysses S. Grant who officially made Colorado a state in 1876. Colorado became the 38th state 100 years after America celebrated its independence from England earning the newly formed state the nickname the centennial state. This year Colorado celebrates its 139th year in the union.

So many people love the state and there are so many reasons why people like to travel to Colorado. According to Conde Naste, the main reasons are:
  •          some of the best ski resorts in the world
  •         national parks
  •         the art
  •         nature
  •         good food and good beer
      We hope you love the state as much as we do. Share your favorite Colorado stories with us!
And hey, how about celebrating by planning a ski trip to Colorado this winter?
The Snow Sport Team would love to assist you!

Happy Colorado Day!
Have a great week,