We always like to see major consumer magazines verify what we
already know that travel agents usually provide the best price, in
addition to personal service and expertise. The May issue of Real
Simple magazine has a story titled “Virtual Vacations: Online
travel packages promise value, convenience and selection. But do
they really deliver?” The answer, three out of four times, was no.
The article compared the price of four different types of vacations
on four big-name online companies and also included a quote from a
traditional travel agent. Not only did the agents come up with the
best price three times, they also found the most convenient airline
schedules, offered to set up tee times and recommended a hotel near
the calmer beach for swimming. In comparison, Hotwire doesn’t even
let you know what airline you’re flying or flight times until you
pay. Sounds like this magazine is recommending a real simple way
for its 1.5 million readers to book their travel next time.