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Article on booking on-line

Interesting article on booking on-line...

Article by Written by : Peter Needham and published by the E GLOBAL TRAVEL MEDIA
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Booking through a travel agent is a better bet than booking online if you wish to avoid problems when arranging travel or while travelling.
Seven out of 10 Australians run into difficulties when travelling or preparing to travel, a survey by consumer group Choice has revealed. Over a quarter of those problems concern booking online – with hidden fees topping the list of peeves.

The Choice research was based on responses from a nationally representative sample of 1100 Australian travellers aged 18–75 who had travelled for leisure domestically (ever) and internationally (in the past 12 months). 

Most commonly encountered travel problems were:

  • Booking online (26%)
  • Flights (24%)
  • Transport (taxis, buses, trains) (19%)
  • Booking with a travel agent (18%)
  • Mobile phones (17%)
  • Car hire (14%)
  • Accommodation (14%)

For those who struck problems with booking online, 57% complained about hidden fees. Nearly 30% also struck difficulty fixing mistakes online and/or encountered technical website issues.

Booking with a travel agent caused problems for less than two out of 10 travellers, ranking it only as the fourth most commoArticle about booking on linen problem travellers encountered. Of those with gripes who booked through agents, 34% said they had difficulty fixing mistakes, 29% objected to hidden fees. Another 19% said they didn’t get quite what they paid for, such as preferred room types.

Choice reminded its readers that “the compulsory licensing scheme for travel agents was abolished and replaced with a voluntary accreditation scheme called ATAS on 1 July 2014. The voluntary scheme provides some protections and recourse, such as full and partial refunds, if you are wronged.”

Choice advises consumers to do their research and find a reputable agent. “Agents with accreditation, such as ATAS accreditation, are required to meet minimal professional standards family and friends can also be a great source for recommendations.”

Of the 24% of respondents to the Choice survey who said they had struck some sort of problem with their flight, about half (51% ) said flights were either delayed or cancelled.
Choice advices travellers to obtain travel insurance that covers delays and cancellations. AFTA advises the same.

Written by : Peter Needham


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