Using a Travel Agency Or Purchasing a Ticket From the Airline

When you want to go on a vacation that requires a flight, you have two main options for purchasing that ticket. You can purchase the ticket from the airline directly or from a travel agency. For decades, purchasing a ticket from the airline was the best option for many, unless they tourconsultancy an entire vacation package with a travel agency. Even if you do not intend to do any other vacation planning with an agent, you can still sometimes get a flight through them. But what is the difference, really, and is one option better than the other?

To answer that question, you must first define what services a travel agency offers. Today, the Internet is a premier way for ordering tickets for many people. Websites sell thousands of tickets every day. Are these travel agencies? Some say yes, because they serve as a third party helping you to plan your vacation while others say no because these websites do not actually have vacation packages similar to those offered by your local travel agency. For now, let’s assume that these are not travel agencies and look at a comparison just between airlines themselves and travel agencies that plan vacation packages for travelers.

When you buy directly from an airline, the price of the ticket will depend most on your date and time of travel. Usually, you can get a cheaper price if you travel on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, or Thursdays. You can also save money, for the most part, if you are willing to travel during times that other people usually do not want to travel, like very late at night. With an airline there is no middleman, so you do not pay any kind of commission fee along the way.

That’s not true when it comes to travel agencies. When you book a flight through an agent, you are paying them a commission for their time. This does not necessarily mean that you will pay a more expensive price overall though. Travel agents usually buy tickets in bulk. That does not mean that they purchase all of the seats on a single flight necessarily, though that can be the case in some situations. What it usually means is that the travel agent commits to selling a certain number of flights or a certain dollar amount from that airline every month or every year. In exchange for their business, the airline sells them seats at a lower price. So, even when you add a commission on top of that price, in many cases, you are still paying less than you would pay to buy directly from an airline.