By Any Name ‘Why Use My Services?’

Over the years my travel position has changed its prevailing name from travel agent to travel consultant to the now travel advisor. Whatever you want to call my job, I am here to assist you. And there are so many reasons why you need me to assist you. Here are two very recent client experiences, where they were very glad they used my services:

“I would like to thank you for all of your terrific support in this process. I could not have pulled off such a great surprise trip for my wife’s 50th without you! Your creative ideas, research and helpful suggestions made the trip and “event” a huge success. Of course you saved the best for last when Air France went on strike and our flight was cancelled at the “eleventh hour”, you saved the day (and avoided my heart attack!) Thank you for jumping through hoops to get us a new flight and back on schedule!

Thanks again, you’ve been a joy to work with.

‘Til next time,”

– Dan Demmer, Bolton, MA


“Recently, I was flying from St. Louis to Chicago when our plane was delayed at the gate. We had, to quote the pilot, ‘A minor problem on this brand new plane.’ The minor problem turned into a one hour delay which meant that the majority of my fellow passengers would also miss their connections. I was just starting to think of fighting my way off the plane with 200 other passengers so as to get to the head of the line at the transfer desk line (the only way I could imagine solving this problem) when I remembered my travel agent Harriet Ahouse.

As soon as we landed in Chicago, I called her and told her of my predicament. Because she had arranged the flight for me she had the information on her screen in a minute. I told her I would have to hang up as the plane was emptying when she said, ‘Don’t go. Give me one more minute.’ Then she said, ‘I’ve got you on the 12:30 to Boston. Gate 18B.’ I was thrilled. And off I went homeward.

That’s service. And it proved to me again that an agent can get more done in less time that I could ever have done on my own. Cell phone or not.”

– Grace Billings, Boston, MA

The second situation was so simple to resolve while and the first most complex. In both cases a quick action on my behalf made a difference. When Dan called me in July to plan a surprise 50th birthday present for his wife, I thought, what fun! The morning of their departure Helene did not know she was going to Paris, take the Orient Express from Paris to Venice and then spend four nights in Florence! Can you imagine? Dan and I had arranged spa treatments, a personal shopper in Paris, dinner reservations for every night throughout the trip, transfers everywhere, museum tickets and walking tours and more! But can you really imagine if they had missed the last two business class seats to Paris and possibly not been able to go? I will not let my mind go there even today weeks after they have returned!

Here are five reasons to use a Virtuoso travel advisor:

Reason 1: Travelers feel that doing their own planning is empowering and that giving it up will diminish their experience.

Fact: Whether you’re the do-it-yourself type or are looking for someone to completely take the reins, collaboration with a Virtuoso travel advisor eliminates stress so you can focus on the excitement of travel.

Reason 2: Travelers can find everything they need on the Internet.

Fact: A Virtuoso advisor saves time, cuts through the clutter, and can personalize trips tailored to your needs, interests, and budget. Their expertise and connections around the world help you travel better.

Reason 3: They believe an advisor adds to the cost of the trip.

Fact: A Virtuoso travel advisor has access to the same (and often better) pricing that you can find online, and can secure VIP perks such as free room upgrades, daily breakfast, and other benefits you can’t get on your own.

Reason 4: Travelers don’t understand the value an advisor brings.

Fact: In addition to saving you time and money, a Virtuoso advisor helps make the most of your free time. Plus, your advisor is available 24/7 before, during, and after your trip-ensuring peace of mind so you can relax and have fun. (A client, of mine, went to Italy knowing her mother was very ill and would need to return to Vancouver if she died. The client had my home number just in case. I did not want her going through our 24 hour service under this situation! She did not call but it was nice for her knowing that she could.)

Reason 5: They don’t know how to find one.

Fact: Problem solved – you’ve come to the right place!

About alwaysharriet

With thirty years experience in corporate and leisure travel consulting, Harriet Ahouse has traveled extensively throughout the Caribbean and worldwide. An avid scuba diver, she understands the requirements of travelers both on land and in the water. On the European scene she has offered traditional and personalized travel itineraries throughout the continent--Italy, France, and England are some of her favorites. As a Virtuoso Agent, she also has extensive resources to enhance her expertise in designing individual destination travel itineraries--and honeymoons--worldwide!
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