Most travellers tend to have the belief that travelling on ones own, i.e. without the services of a travel agency, can yield huge savings, thus making the pleasure of travelling abroad all that more enjoyable. This is, unfortunately, not the case. Many do not realise that agencies tend to have special contracts with hotels and restaurant organisations which can lead to all parties being better off. The price for accommodation offered by a travel agency is not necessarily more expensive than the price you will be given at the reception desk of a hotel. A recent survey by the USTOA (US Tour Operation Association) found that Americans are the guiltiest of believing this myth about prices in the tourism industry, particularly young Americans.
The study showed that 75% of young Americans feel the need, mostly because of money, to organise their own trip. They make the mistake of thinking that it is more economical. A similar mistake of young Americans, found by the study, is that they tend to believe that agencies organise trips whereby people are forced to spend all the time together. They believe that their freedom is completely destroyed by taking parts in the so-called ‘all-inclusive’ tours. Perhaps this explains why 70% of older Americans, around the 55-64 years mark, tend to use agencies more. Perhaps the thought of being in company all the time suits them. Whatever they think, it does not have to be true. Agencies can offer people of all ages the opportunity to enjoy their holiday time with freedom and at a fraction of the cost.
Surprisingly, a mere 6% of Americans admitted to realising that it is possible to go on holiday cheaper through an agency. Maybe the results of the survey can lead to people being more aware of the possibilities and all parties will be better off.