Why Should You Use a Travel Agent
I have been in this industry professionally for over 10 years now. It amazes me that so many people do not know the value we can offer as travel agents. I hear so many times, I saw it so I booked it. I thought today would be a great day to share some of the value I offer to my clients.
First, clients are more to me at MackeyMouse Travel than just people who booked their vacation with me. Through the process of working on a trip, often times we become friends. When living life, raising children, working, sports, dance, band, anniversaries, birthdays, it spills over into conversations I have with clients. I think that makes us much more understanding and willing to help someone (clients) who might need something quick or have a somewhat hard issue.
Now that we have that out of the way, let’s look at some of the things travel agents can do versus you booking directly online.
When you travel to another country, you are at the mercy of your host country. If something goes wrong you are on your own. Whether that something is medical or “trouble” you have to navigate the embassy and try to get yourself or loved ones home while in the middle of a stressful situation. I’m in my home office moving and changing to get you on your way as quickly as possible. If you are landing in Paris at 2am and have a connection at 5am, but your flight is delayed because of a detour or delay in take off, I work to get your connection changed, transfers updated, hotel notified you will be late, reschedule any tours you may have had upon landing, so that you don’t have to stress about a thing! Online agency's do not do that!
Because I have a network of agents and suppliers I can be in contact with someone before you can google the question! I have quoted my specialties so many times I can do it blindfolded (or while driving telling my husband how to navigate a website!) and get you booked sitting at a pool bar! Most people take hours navigating and checking to make sure they aren’t doing something wrong. I know what is needed and get it done.
You are on vacation to enjoy your family! Why should you spend your time in destination worrying over changes, questions, delays, bumps in the road? I am here to make sure you have what you need to have the time of your life! I understand the costs involved in delays and what it does to the overall experience of your trip.
Using a travel agent doesn’t take away from the fun of planning your trip. If you want to plan, do it! I’ll be here to answer questions, offer advice, and advocate while you are on your vacation. But booking your trip with me is a must in these new days of travel and all that is happening in the world! I want to be your trusted agent and help you spend your vacation budget wisely and use up all of your vacation days!
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How Can You Afford a Vacation?
How Can You Afford A Vacation?
Cara and Steve at Fort Wilderness Campground When Cara was young we had a small pop-up camper. We loved our camper! We would go camping every weekend and I could put it up by myself! Once I bought her actual play clothes (she was my first and I should have bought stock in Gymboree!), she could get out and tromp around in the creek or pet the bunnies, try to feed the peacocks. So many amazing memories! One day I was talking with my dad about camping and I said Cara just loves it! He said I know why, because she has you and here daddy 24/7. No phone, no tv (although we had tv with a DVD player because she needed her shows!), just us playing, relaxing and enjoying and growing. I miss those days!
Blink and 9 years later and an addition of a little brother we don’t camp much anymore. Too many things to do, too many irons in the fire! I’m sure like most of you, we try to schedule family time, maybe a family movie night, a girl’s day or a boys going to the game, but it’s not the same.
Sometimes the time isn’t always the issue. These days it’s hard to scrap together a large chunk of cash at once! That’s where MackeyMouse Travel can save the day! We can offer low deposits and monthly payments, giving your wallet a rest and allowing you to pay CASH for some much needed family time!
How can we do that? MMT has partnered with suppliers who offer our clients the best service and the best options for your family’s budget. Our largest supplier (well outside of Disney!) has now lowered their deposit to $150! Even on packages that include air!!!! Unheard of!!
Sit down tonight and talk to your kids, talk to your family and decide where you can reconnect together! Is it going to be on the beaches of the Caribbean with oodles of kid’s clubs activities? Or is it going to be on a ship at sea, where you can opt for a formal night for that family portrait? Or what about a magical trip to Walt Disney World where your princess can ride on daddy’s shoulders wearing her tiara and princess dress? Where ever your dreams take you, MackeyMouse Travel is ready to help you plan it! Contact us today so we can get that vacation planned!
Trips with low deposits:
Walt Disney World - $200.00
Disney Cruise Line – Percentage of cruise fare
Major Cruise Lines - $100.00 - $250.00 per person
All Inclusive Resorts in the Caribbean - $150.00 per person
Earlier this week we posted about the 4 Big Benefits of planning a Disney family vacation. Now, we’d love to share some of the other notable benefits, also known as the “small” benefits.
OTHER NOTABLE BENEFITS
Location, location, location- With their on-property location convenient to the theme parks, the Disney hotels are a haven for guests who seek a midday swimming break - or a siesta.
Theming- It’s not just a room. In the same way that Disney’s theme parks offer an escape to a timeless land of enchantment, a walk down small-town Main Street or a peek at the future, Disney hotels offer a mix of adventures. Disney Imagineers have created detailed, themed environments that include the romance and beauty of Africa at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge to Victorian opulence at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa.
Youth policy – Guests 17 and under stay at no additional charge in parents’ rooms (up to the designated capacity of the room) at Disney resort hotels.
Youth services and facilities – All Disney resort hotels offer in-room child care for ages 6 months to 12 years in partnership with independent childcare provider Kid’s Nite Out; all Disney hotels feature kiddie pools (in addition to full-size pools), many have playgrounds and some have Child Activity Centers for ages 3 to 12.
Online check-in – Guests can take care of the paperwork that normally accompanies check-in … in the comfort of their home up to 10 days before their visit. Upon arrival at their hotel, guests then stop by a special desk, show ID, sign, pick up their room keys and information packet, and begin enjoying their vacation.
Lobby concierge- One call can do it all. Each Disney resort hotel offers a lobby concierge to arrange park tickets, dining reservations and tee times, and to provide helpful hints on setting up other activities.
Key to the World card – It’s a hotel room key and much more. Magic Your Way theme park tickets and Disney Dining Plan entitlements can be built into the card. For easy tracking and convenience, the card also can be used to charge meals, goods and services directly to the room, giving the guest a consolidated statement of vacation purchases.
Merchandise delivery – Purchases at select shops throughout Walt Disney World Resort can be delivered to the guest’s Disney hotel at no charge, allowing the guest to play without lugging packages around the parks.
Exemption from parking fees at the theme parks – By presenting a resort ID, guests enter parking lots for free no matter how many parks they visit during their stay.
“Bottomless” drinking mug- Quenching a vacation-long thirst is easy at Disney’s resorts. Guests can purchase a mug themed to their resort that will become a keepsake when the holiday ends. During their length of stay, they can continually refill the mug at designated locations at their resort.
Preferred tee times- Disney hotel guests get preferred tee times for Disney’s four championship golf courses – including two courses that are part of PGA TOUR tradition, having hosted professional events from the early 1970s to the present.
Transportation to “the tees” – Golfing guests at Disney owned-and-operated hotels have complimentary door-to-door transportation between their resort and Walt Disney World golf facilities.
So, have we convinced you yet? If so make sure you call us first! We'd love to add to this list of benefits by being your travel partner!!
Club Mobay at MBJ Airport
So you are headed to Jamaica! Woohoo! The planning is part of the fun of any vacation. But this could be your first time to MBJ or to any Caribbean country for that matter. There is a little hidden gem in the airport that few know about but those that do are true believers.
Arriving after a long flight can be daunting. What if I told you there is a great way to by-pass the immigration line and head straight to the front? What if you had someone taking you from immigration to baggage claim to help expedite the process for you? You’d do it wouldn’t you!
Club Mobay offers that very service! Upon deplaning you will head with the other hoards of travelers towards immigration to be processed into the country as a tourist. A uniformed member of the Club Mobay team will meet you as you come into the main terminal with a sign with your name on it and a smile. They will help you through the immigration process and offer assistance with processing through the luggage claim area.
If you are staying at Sandals or Couples (a handful of other resorts offer these too) you will be escorted to the welcome lounge offered by these brands. These are a great way to check in for your transportation and get you ready for the all inclusive experience with a cocktail and some snacks.
Club Mobay offers a fabulous lounge to wait for your flight! Once you check in with your airline you will head towards the Club Mobay check in before going to customs/immigration. You will be processed through quickly and head on to the lounge to await your flight. In the lounge you have free wifi, free international calling, complimentary drinks (alcoholic included), assorted snacks and foods (complimentary of course), newspapers from around the world, tvs showing news stations from around the world, a children’s area for them to release some energy! And of course a spa for that last minute treatment to help you relax before you head back to reality.
I can’t say enough about Club Mobay! I thoroughly enjoy it and won’t make a trip to Jamaica without adding it to my trip! I just wish other destinations offered something similar to make our travel life easier.
Top 8 Tricks for Packing!
Packing can be a very daunting process for a long trip and even for a short getaway. You have to decide what to wear, what shoes, and what your mood might be on a certain day often a week or more out. Then add in packing for your loved ones and you might just need a vacation from prepping for your vacation.
Below are a few tips we would love to share to take the stress out of packing for your vacation!
NEVER start the day before! Always build in some time to gather what you will need. If we are headed on a week trip with the kids I always start at least a month before. I grab a basket or Rubbermaid tote and start gathering my must take items (that I don't need everyday prior to the trip). This saves me from the last minute shuffle.
Don't put all your eggs in one basket. In today's hurried world it's common to lose a bag when flying. It's stinks, but happens. Protect yourself from a really bad start to your vacation. For my family of 4 I pack 1 outfit (including undies) in a carry on. If each of us is taking a carry on I'll pack our pjs too.
Baggies! They just became your best friend! I put everything into a baggie. All of the chargers go into a gallon baggie and into my carry on. For the kids I put an outfit together with socks and undies and put them into a gallon sized baggie. Flatten it, as you are squeezing the air out seal it. I don't use the slide top type, I get the zipper and sometimes the double freezer kind. You will be amazed at how much room you have in your suitcase if you do this!
Rolling. Rolling works really well if you don't have bulky sweaters, jeans and polos. Fold your clothing lengthwise and roll into a cylinder shape. I've tried this on European trips and it does save space if done properly.
Try the Retail Fold. I worked at The Disney Store and we had a Disney fold. I know it sounds crazy and well it was. But the point is we could put a lot of tshirts on a shelf because we did the Disney fold. When you fold your tops this way you keep the wrinkles to a minimum and you flatten the cloth as much as possible. I demonstrate in the images below:
Make your clothes do double duty. Are you headed on a cruise where you need a nice outfit for dinner? If so pack a lightweight black skirt that can be paired with a tshirt by day and dressed up with a blouse and scarf at night. I do this even at Disney World with shorts. I always wear a tshirt/tank top during the day (because it's hot) and change into a polo or nicer blouse for the evening because I want to feel nice for dinner.
Make a plan. I know it's nice to wing it but it's very difficult to pack when you do. Plan out your days so you know what you need to take. Make a list so that you can check off the items you need to purchase and the items you've already set aside to pack. Keep that list close by your box so you can keep an eye on what you need.
If you travel often, consider purchasing a good toiletry bag. One that holds the items you need every time you travel. Keep it packed and ready to go with fresh items so that you don't have to rely on your everyday toothbrush or your little bottles of shampoo. Having to fill little bottles at midnight before a 6am flight is no fun, believe me!
Now, you should be able to travel the world now! Have a fabulous vacation and if you like our tips be sure to share on Facebook!