If there’s one thing we’ve learned from this devastating outbreak as we look at the world going from bad to worse with travel, it is the undeniable value of a travel agent.
We’ve heard the horror stories from people across the globe with call hold times to online travel agencies (OTAs), airlines, and cruise lines maxing out between 2-4 hours, only to be disconnected in the end. Many of whom have travel arrangements scheduled within days and need immediate help but are unable to get a hold of anyone to cancel their vacation for a refund or voucher – this is where travel management companies with live agents available 24/7/365 such as Global Marine Travel step in.
In addition to providing marine fares for the maritime community, GMT works with various Cruise Line Consortia’s for passenger air travel to and from a cruise ship. Given the severity of the situation with the Coronavirus halting all cruise sailings for the foreseeable future, you’ll see in the example we are about to share with you just how far our agents go to ensure our partners and their clients receive peace of mind and arrive home safely in a time of mass confusion and hysteria.
Mike Kullenberg, a travel consultant with Cruise Planners reached out to our Manager of the Air/Sea and E-Commerce Department saying, “I can’t begin to tell you how much I appreciate all that Vince did for this client. The upshot of it was that the couple got back to the US just 25 minutes before all the huge lines started at Customs. So great job Vince.”
In an earlier note to Vincent Risola, GMT’s Air/Sea & E-Commerce Coordinator, Mr. Kullenberg said, “Thanks again for all your help. The clients made it home fine, and had no issues with the flights or screening in ATL. I like to give credit where due, and you certainly came through. I posted this on the Cruise Planners Facebook page, so our fellow agents can know what a great job you did for us:
I want to do shout outs to a couple of folks that went way beyond the call of duty to help a client and me. It’s a long post but please read.
The situation was a couple that went to Europe for their honeymoon. Started in Germany, then Austria, then Italy. While in Austria, Italy shut down, so lots of restructuring into Switzerland and France, then the US shut down, and the couple decided to come home.
Vincent Risola from Global Marine travel assisted in two ways. On the way to the airport on departure, they had a car wreck which delayed them for 3 hours and they missed the plane. Vince was able to get them on the next flight with no penalty or change fee. Then on Tuesday when they decided to come home Vince spent almost an hour on the phone with me working to get the couple home from Austria. The systems were fighting him all the way, but he got it done at a price and schedule I couldn't believe. That kind of service and dedication is what we all look for in a supplier, and GMT will be getting all my air business from now on.
"Again, thanks so much for being an “above and beyond” guy,” said Mr. Kullenberg.
It’s situations like this that make us all realize that customer service in the travel industry is still alive and well. GMT is still here to be your preferred travel manager, ready to tackle these major travel issues with our customers best interests in mind.