Travel Agent’s Making A Comeback – Here’s How to Know if You Need One

Uncertainty in the friendly skies is fueling a run on a profession long thought departed

Credit: Archive Photos


Like most travel agents, Sarah Fazendin spent much of last year canceling trips for clients. The owner of Videre Travel, an agency in Denver that specializes in high-end family getaways, scrambled to secure refunds and credit vouchers and organize paperwork for travel insurance claims.

That wasn’t the worst of it. “When an airline refunded a client, they also recalled our commission,” she says. “So as I worked around the clock, I watched my revenue go from record-breaking to nonexistent.” Hers is a common story: Travel agents as a whole lost a combined $12.4 billion in 2020, according to research company Phocuswright.

The travel agent may be one of the most misunderstood professional groups around. In a world with tons of digital DIY planning tools, who needs them?

But thanks to fast-changing Covid-19 testing protocols, border restrictions, shifting airline schedules, rental car scarcity, and limited hotel inventory, even the most confident jet-setters are turning to the pros for help.

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