Trouble dealing with TA

PaisleyPie

Earning My Ears
Joined
Jan 19, 2002
What would you do in this situation:

I booked my family's first cruise for May 2002 about 4 weeks ago directly with DCL. After reading these boards, I learned that I could get free drink mugs for my family if I booked through AAA. Since I had not sent in my deposit, I contacted AAA Travel (first time I've used them) and transfered my booking to them. The TA was very friendly and polite, but didn't seem to know much about DCL. I gave her all of the information I had, including the Springtime Magic discount information. She contacted DCL and got the same price I had, so I booked the cruise.

A week later I gave her the deposit for my family of four (via phone). She was supposed to send me a receipt and a DCL/AAA travel guide. After two weeks I did not receive either, although I had received a confirmation from DCL (from my direct booking). I called her and she sent the receipt out yesterday. I received my receipt today, and I was shocked to find the cost of the trip is $700 more than I we discussed. This is only a 3 night trip, so $700 respresents a large percentage of my costs.

I am really upset about this. I am going to contact the TA tomorrow (the office was closed by the time I got the mail). Should I just cancel with her and make my own ressies again with DCL?
 
maybe that is how she came up with a different price? If i were you i would cancel and stick with your own reservations. After all the soda mugs for the three day is $15, and the $700 is a huge difference and definetly not worth it in your case...

I too booked through AAA, and i believe i know more about DCL than the travel agents there. My TA was very surprised on more than one occassion when i would tell her something i had learned on this board.
 
Hi PaisleyPie! I would definitely call AAA again in the morning and have them get a price adjustment for you. It sounds like they did NOT apply the Springtime Magic rate after all.

I would hope that AAA could fix this easily for you. Good luck! :)
 
Yikes! What a nasty surprise!
One of my biggest pleasures in dealing with Dreams Unlimited is that they really know Disney. It's so refreshing to deal with "experts." I always hated the fact that I knew so much more than local agents...that's why I generally did my previous bookings myself. But now we do all ours with DU.
Barb
Visit the Platinum Castaway Club at: www.castawayclub.com
 
inkognito..I think I will give DU a try on my next trip (we go to Disney about 3 times a year). Planning for the first two trips (AKL in March and DCL in May) has been a nightmare. I usually love the planning, but not this year.

I am an AAA member, but the Springtime Magic discount is available to everyone. Its right on the disney website for crying out loud.

Thanks everyone
 
Been there, done that ..... I too went to AAA (am a member) to try and book a cruise because of the free mugs and $100 shipboard credit. To my surprise, the TA was unaware of most offers, including the free mugs. The first TA quoted me a price without the Spring Time Magic, and had to call back and save myself $1400. Then when I asked about the Dolphin add-on, she said I would have to upgrade my cabin in order to stay at the Dolphin. I then told her about the special they were offering. A lot of work for mugs, but I wanted the credit.

I tried again at another AAA office and that TA had me booked into two CAT. 11 rooms (which I came to find out didn't connect), when I asked about the mugs, she had to ask someone else, and then I questioned my Disney Club credit and she really couldn't help me.

I went away very disappointed. I decided to try Dreams Unlimited and have been very happy with their contact and information. I have always read good things about them and have decided to forego the free mugs and go with them.

I can so appreciate your experience.

Good luck with everything!
 
I ran into the same problem with AAA - the agent knew next to nothing about DCL... I really wasn't comfortable with the fact that for each question I asked, she had to ask DCL... I could have done that myself! I left there, after telling her I wanted to shop around, and contact DU... much happier now!
 
aaa is great for some things, booking cruises isn't one of them!

their prices are usually higher (at least for the other lines) and the agents who do everything aren't as knowledgable as a cruise only travel agent.
 
I have to agree with you all about AAA! I went in there the other day to discuss a Disney Cruise and got a really nice young travel agent. She was nice alright, but did not know ANYTHING about Disney Cruises. As she and I talked an older lady (travel agent) who sat near her kept interupting our conversation and she kept correcting me. (even though her info was not totally correct). I left politely when I asked if the three day cruises had all of the programs the seven day cruise had and the older lady said "WELL....OF COURSE!" like I was stupid for asking! Oh well. I'm sure there are wonderful AAA travel agents out there.
 
Our AAA agent from Enfield, CT was great. Yes, we did bring things to her and yes, we did have to tell her about the mugs. She was always friendly and we bought HER a gift for our upcoming trip. She had to put up with US. We called DCL and we read on-line. We got the discounts we deserve and are due.

I am happy people have good experiences with DU. If it works - stick with it. But, I see no reason why AAA can't match prices. Do your homework! People are so quick to blame - you price shop when you purchase other items - why not your trip? Sorry - I get a little defensive - I've enjoyed arranging w/TA so much this trip will be most enjoyable.

Kim ºOº
 
Hi
I will not use AAA for anything except car problems and perhaps travelers checks! I went to three (3) different AAA agents. The first one had all the Mickey balloons hanging all over the place. I was asssigned an older agent who knew nothing about a Disney Cruise and wanted me to really think about perhaps Princess or Radisson? (been there, done that). They did not have any DCL brochures and when she told me that DCL does not go to Cozumel I figured I may as well leave. The second AAA center I went to had about 15 people working at desks but had to wait about a half hour to actually sit down with the agency expert (NOT!). She also wanted me to consider another line because DCL was soooo expensive and I could get more for my money elsewhere. I finally convinced her it was DCL. I asked about the mugs and credits and some ideas for Cayman and Cozumel. Oh my, I must be mistaken (?), am I sure this is where DCL is going? Wait, lets get the book, (mind you this is January cruise month for AAA). She then proceeds to read the DCL book in front of me and look for the info. I stopped her at that point and asked her for her card and wanted her to answer three questions. What benefits might I expect should I book or transfer my booking to them? What type of excursions are typically done in GC and Cozumel? What are aproximate costs? Left her my email and phone number and have yet to hear from her. The third one was not much different.

Customer service at AAA has gone down quite a bit in the last few years and it is a shame. A quick buck is on a lot of minds these days!

Maybe there is a great AAA agent out there somewhere. but I lost mine in a manager-employee personality conflict. (Really, turnover at my office is horrendous)
 
I think that AAA, as well as most other travel agents, deal with so many types of trips that they are not experts in any of them. I don't think you can expect them to be, although you can expect them to be polite. That's why I think you should go with Dreams Unlimited when booking a Disney cruise or vacation. They ARE experts, that's what they are here for. I have sent my contact (donna) at DU at least one email almost every day since I booked my cruise over two weeks ago and she has always responded within a couple of hours (although usually in less than a half hour) with all the answers. She never acts as if a question is stupid - even though some may be since I have never been on a cruise. I have never been as satisfied or impressed by a travel agency. Also, they continually check to see if the price of your cruise has gone down. If it has, you get the lower price. I have never know of a travel agent to do that.
 

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