Coming on the heels of the MSNBC article many agents have been buzzing about this week—“Don’t Use a Travel Agent” — is a blog by ComputerWorld’s Robert L. Mitchell that every agent should clip, post or create a link to on their website. “Why Travel Search Engines Suck” is the vindication agents in an online world have been waiting for.
It all comes down to one basic truism: “Usually a human can outwit a search engine.” Those words from Mitchell’s agent boil all the agent vs. online arguments down to one simple maxim. Home-based agents may want to stitch that in needlepoint and hang it over their work station—or at least put some version of it on your business card and/or website. If nothing else, keep it in mind when courting new clients and reiterate it when dealing with existing clients. After booking a particularly detailed itinerary for a client, you can lean back, smile at them and say, “Score one for the humans.”