How Do You Know a Travel Deal is a Real Deal? [Article]

Best Travel Deals | Helen Brahms | Have2Travel | Have2Cruise | Cruise Planners

How do you find a good travel deal? Very easy…Ask a Travel Concierge. Yes, it is that simple.

When you see a travel deal on the internet, in a magazine, on TV, etc they can sometimes be misleading. The cartoon above is a bit of an exaggeration but it basically sums up what most ‘travel deals’ are like. You see an ad for a cruise it says $199 for a 7-night cruise. WOW! You think that is a great deal. What the ad doesn’t tell you is that is the entry price for their cheapest inside cabin (meaning no windows). This cabin is often on the lowest deck of the ship, either all the way forward or at the back of the ship where you get the most movement. It could be directly below the theater or other noisy public spaces. It could also be the room isn’t much bigger than a closet with bunk beds; if you were looking for a nice romantic cruise that ain’t going to happen in a closet with bunk beds. Okay, granted some people could be creative and make it romantic, but for the average person it ain’t going to be romantic.

Also the ad doesn’t give you the full price. You also have to add port fees and taxes to the price of any cruise you see. This will vary based on where and when the ship is sailing. Sometimes the port fees and taxes are more than the cruise fare! Now is that travel deal really looking like a deal or something else?

Another thing you have to be wary of is the price they show is based on DOUBLE occupancy. Meaning the rate is per person for TWO people in the cabin. What if you are traveling by yourself? Well most cruise lines charge a single supplement which can be up to 200% of the cruise fare. Now that $199 travel deal is now $398 for a solo traveler for a cabin not much bigger than a closet, PLUS you have port fees and taxes on top of that. Now your travel deal is going to be around $500-$600. Not so much of a ‘great’ travel deal now and we haven’t even looked at airfares to get you to where the ship departs from.

We haven’t even talked about the charges you will have onboard the ship like drinks, excursions, shopping, gratuities, etc. Your Travel Concierge will go over these with you.

Some people don’t care what ship they sail on, where it is going, they just see some travel deal and grab it and go. They also grab the cheapest airfare they can find and off they go. For some people this works. For many it doesn’t. That cheapest airfare could have layovers. I once saw a great air travel deal to New Zealand. When I looked at the deal, yes, the price was good BUT it had a 17 hour layover in Tokyo, Japan on the way there and 15 hours on the way home. Now that travel deal wasn’t so much of a deal. Especially when I just wanted to get to NZ and back as quick as I could. It’s not that I don’t want to go to Japan, I do, it is just I had a short amount of time in NZ for my brother’s wedding and wanted to spend as much time with my family as I could. From Los Angeles to Wellington with a stopover in Auckland I was looking at total travel time of 15-16 hours. If I did the layover through Tokyo I was looking at about 50 hours PLUS I would need a hotel in Tokyo with no time to sightsee. All of a sudden what seemed to be a ‘great’ travel deal wasn’t.

By using a Travel Concierge they can help you find the BEST deals that work for you. They look at what you where you want to go, the type of accommodations you want, how long you have to travel, your budget, etc and then they go find the best deal for you. They save you time and money by being your one-stop shop for your travel. They make everything seem seamless for you. They can help you book your cruise, hotels & resorts, car rentals, air, excursions, etc. and pull it all together for you in one place so it makes your planning seem easy. They are also your one point of contact and advocate should anything not go as it should.

PLEASE REMEMBER a good Travel Concierge is your best friend when it comes to finding the best travel deals for you. They are more concerned about getting you the best deal for the vacation you want to take than the commission they will make. Most Travel Concierges do not ask for a planning fee up front and those that do will apply it to your final payment if you book through them. They are paid commission by the vendors they use. You do not pay for their services.

If you want to ‘tip’ them for their service then give them a rocking video or written testimony and refer your family and friends to them. Those are the BEST ‘tips’ you can give your Travel Concierge.

If you would like help planning your next vacation and finding the best travel deal please go to and setup a day and time that best works with your schedule. Once you select the day and time hit CONFIRM and that will put it directly into our calendar so we come to the meeting prepared to help you plan your vacation with the best travel deals.




About Helen Brahms

World globetrotter, Helen Brahms, is your Luxury Travel Concierge. She specializes in creating unique once-in-a-lifetime travel memories and charity fundraising trips. Whether your travel dreams include exotic locations or time with your family, you can have it all. Helen loves to help people cross destinations off their travel bucket list before they take a dirt nap! Helen is the host of the Have2Travel Radio Show ( and is the author of the book "Congratulations, You're Going On a Cruise! Now What?" and the co-author of the book "Passionistas Talk!: The Best of the Passion Point Interviews (Vol. 1)"
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