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View Full Version : Next question...book through DCL or TA ?


cissy
02-26-2010, 10:06 PM
I have seen a lot of posts that talk about transferring your ressie from DCL to a TA. My question is in parts...

Should I shop around to find the best deal without a TA and book it myself then turn it over to a TA for an OBC? Or should I go with a TA to start and assume they have the best deal? I like using a TA for my travel and had a great experience with SMV two years ago so I would like to use them. But if I book it with them but then can get an OBC with another company should I move my ressie??? But that seems dishonest because one TA would do the work but another company would then get my business for an OBC.

I am confused!! :confused3 Please let me know what you all have done so I can figure out what I should do next!!

THANKS!!!:goodvibes

NancyIL
02-26-2010, 10:12 PM
You can find out about onboard credits before you choose a travel agency. I would NOT book with one travel agency and then switch to another just for more OBC.

cissy
02-26-2010, 10:17 PM
Thanks, that is what I was thinking. I would feel terrible about having someone do a lot of work for me and then switching just for the OBC. How do I find out who is offering OBC's before I book? Do I just visit the websites?

Also, what if I book a cruise and then later Disney offers a special, like kids sail free? Do I get the better deal?

cosmicrays
02-26-2010, 10:19 PM
The TA should be able to modify your reservation to get you the best deal.
I think once you book with a TA you cant move to a new one. I noticed on my TAs website last year it said they would take over a reservation but not if it was already with a TA.

NancyIL
02-26-2010, 10:26 PM
Thanks, that is what I was thinking. I would feel terrible about having someone do a lot of work for me and then switching just for the OBC. How do I find out who is offering OBC's before I book? Do I just visit the websites?

Also, what if I book a cruise and then later Disney offers a special, like kids sail free? Do I get the better deal?

First - check the cruise price at DCL's web site so you know what it should be for the cabin you want. You can request a quote from the agencies that interest you. If they don't mention an onboard credit - ask. The Dreams Unlimited site is pretty clear about what onboard credits they offer: http://www.dreamsunlimitedtravel.com/cruise/specials.htm#sbc In order to get the full OBC, you should have the travel agency book your cruise. If you book it with DCL and then transfer it to a travel agency, they get a lower commission, and you may get a lower onboard credit

If DCL offers a better deal before you make the final payment, you can ask for the better deal.

kcashner
02-26-2010, 10:44 PM
You cannot book with one TA and then switch to another under normal circumstances. You can rarely, but the process is quite involved--the first must turn the reservation back to DCL (agreeing to lose their commission). In most cases, a second TA won't touch it after that.

What you can do is to book thru DCL and then transfer to a TA. The disadvantage of this is that the TA receives a lesser commission for a transfer than they get for a booking. Some TAs will not accept any transfers, others give a reduced commission for a transfer.

ALL TAs must sell Disney cruises for the same price if you are comparing "apples to apples." Where things may SEEM to differ on web sites, etc. is that some TAs do not list taxes in the numbers on their sites, others do. If you get a quote on the DCL site, you will have to remove the transfers and insurance to get the basic cruise cost.

The only difference you will see among TAs is what "incentive" or "gift" you will get from them for booking. What is less easy to determine is how good their service is or what you can expect from them. In my opinion, you should be shopping for the service and consider the onboard credit a bonus. After all, if you are sitting at an airport with a flight canceled and need to get to Orlando, do you want to be able to TALK to a LIVE person or do you want to be waiting for an e-mail to be returned? Do you want to talk to an agent who is totally on commission (so doesn't really care if he/she didn't do YOUR booking?)

Example--when the Magic couldn't leave Castaway Cay a week ago there were long lines at the GS desk of people being placed on "permanent hold" by airlines, trying to work out new flights, etc. If I had been on that cruise, I would have needed one phone call ...or I could have chosen an e-mail...to my TA. The agency does a huge number of DCL bookings and likely would have already known of the situation, but if not, I would have advised them that I was on the Magic and we would be getting in a day late (or whatever DCL had told us)...and I needed them to work out the travel back home. Id be able to talk to a live person because they have "extended hours" when their office is open as well as an emergency contact number. The person I'd speak to would be on salary, not commission--every agent in the office is MY agent. I'd probably have told them that I'd call back when I was at Port Canaveral to see what had been worked out and trust them to deal with it. When I got back to PC, I'd have flights booked and probably they would have already pulled some of the stuff to start a claim with the travel insurance company.

Does all this sound impossible--no, it's not. It's called service. Can it happen? Well, I was once notified on Friday late afternoon that the Magic would not be sailing the next day and I had certain options.....and I was already at WDW so I'd need hotel, etc. I was once at LAX, having been told to meet the DCL rep and there was NO DCL person anywhere. The Delta people kept saying "but they are always here....and paged them...but I got my TA on the phone and said , "What do I do now?" They got DCL on the phone and got me where I needed to be.

My point--shop for your TA before you book. Get IN WRITING what you will pay and get if you book with them and if it will be the same if you book thru DCL and transfer to them. I don't think transferring is generally a good idea, but you might. But look at WAY more than how much OBC or gift card money you might get.

cosmicrays
02-27-2010, 05:39 AM
You cannot book with one TA and then switch to another under normal circumstances. You can rarely, but the process is quite involved--the first must turn the reservation back to DCL (agreeing to lose their commission). In most cases, a second TA won't touch it after that.

What you can do is to book thru DCL and then transfer to a TA. The disadvantage of this is that the TA receives a lesser commission for a transfer than they get for a booking. Some TAs will not accept any transfers, others give a reduced commission for a transfer.

ALL TAs must sell Disney cruises for the same price if you are comparing "apples to apples." Where things may SEEM to differ on web sites, etc. is that some TAs do not list taxes in the numbers on their sites, others do. If you get a quote on the DCL site, you will have to remove the transfers and insurance to get the basic cruise cost.

The only difference you will see among TAs is what "incentive" or "gift" you will get from them for booking. What is less easy to determine is how good their service is or what you can expect from them. In my opinion, you should be shopping for the service and consider the onboard credit a bonus. After all, if you are sitting at an airport with a flight canceled and need to get to Orlando, do you want to be able to TALK to a LIVE person or do you want to be waiting for an e-mail to be returned? Do you want to talk to an agent who is totally on commission (so doesn't really care if he/she didn't do YOUR booking?)

Example--when the Magic couldn't leave Castaway Cay a week ago there were long lines at the GS desk of people being placed on "permanent hold" by airlines, trying to work out new flights, etc. If I had been on that cruise, I would have needed one phone call ...or I could have chosen an e-mail...to my TA. The agency does a huge number of DCL bookings and likely would have already known of the situation, but if not, I would have advised them that I was on the Magic and we would be getting in a day late (or whatever DCL had told us)...and I needed them to work out the travel back home. Id be able to talk to a live person because they have "extended hours" when their office is open as well as an emergency contact number. The person I'd speak to would be on salary, not commission--every agent in the office is MY agent. I'd probably have told them that I'd call back when I was at Port Canaveral to see what had been worked out and trust them to deal with it. When I got back to PC, I'd have flights booked and probably they would have already pulled some of the stuff to start a claim with the travel insurance company.

Does all this sound impossible--no, it's not. It's called service. Can it happen? Well, I was once notified on Friday late afternoon that the Magic would not be sailing the next day and I had certain options.....and I was already at WDW so I'd need hotel, etc. I was once at LAX, having been told to meet the DCL rep and there was NO DCL person anywhere. The Delta people kept saying "but they are always here....and paged them...but I got my TA on the phone and said , "What do I do now?" They got DCL on the phone and got me where I needed to be.

My point--shop for your TA before you book. Get IN WRITING what you will pay and get if you book with them and if it will be the same if you book thru DCL and transfer to them. I don't think transferring is generally a good idea, but you might. But look at WAY more than how much OBC or gift card money you might get.

awesome response! I had a TA before my current one and its the level of service was okay but the service I get now is so much better. It is not just about the credit its about the calls to make sure we are all set, the info she sends in the mail, thank you cards and the gifts she sent that we were not expecting.

cissy
02-27-2010, 10:18 AM
yes, great reply Kcashner!! I definitely want a TA who will be there for us if there is a problem. THANKS!!!:goodvibes

Paticake
02-27-2010, 10:47 AM
we just booked with DU and got an extra OBC. I used them for our last cruise and they took care of everything.

croppincolburn
02-27-2010, 03:38 PM
One thing my TA did that helped was that she knew to look beyond the suggested room on the Disney site and got me a better location. Since we are only 3 Disney site wanted to put us in the rooms that only hold three and they are much more aft than the ones that hold 4. I'm happy I used at TA that specializes in Disney vacations. (My parents AAA TA is clueless I could have done better)

If you want to PM me then I can give you the name of a couple TAs.