When should you put the computer down and talk to a real travel agent? I’ll tell you when to turn to a pro.
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When Jennifer Forbes and her husband checked in for a recent flight from Richmond to Freeport, Bahamas, they discovered that there are worse ways to start a vacation than having an invalid ticket.
Much worse. The airline on which they had reservations, Bahamasair, didn’t even serve Richmond.
“We had non-refundable hotel reservations,” says Forbes, a homemaker who lives in McKenney, Va. “But we had no way to get there.”
Forbes had booked her vacation through an online travel agency called Hotwire, which offers customers steep discounts in exchange for not telling them the exact airline or hotel they’re booking until they’ve made their reservations. And all reservations are final and non-refundable.
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She booked two separate balcony cabins for her 8-night Eastern Caribbean cruise for $3,440 each.
Turns out she and her travel agent were wrong.
“After researching the Internet, we found out that Carnival Cruise Lines had slashed the prices due to the fact of the many mishaps,” she says. “Yesterday I went online on the Carnival website and found out that the balcony cabins are now selling for $2,319. That is a difference of over $1,100 per cabin.”