Cont. from Part 1
How to Identify Your Perfect Cruise Planner.
Your approach when determining intangible factors is to observe behavior and pay careful attention to questions.
The following short list provides examples of behaviors you should take into consideration. There may be others equally important to you.
a) Did the agent greet you by standing up, smiling warmly, and offering to shake your hand? (Shaking hands may not occur, due to personal or other reasons by either party).
b) If your evaluation took place via telephone, did you sense an upbeat voice and warm smile?
c) Did you sense a genuine gladness to see you and/or to receive your telephone call?
d) If you had to wait, did you wait long?
e) Did you receive the agent's undivided attention, from start to finish? If not, did she or he ask permission to answer another call or to perform another task?
f) After informing the agent of your desire to take a cruise, did s/he give you literature, other information or simply a sales pitch prior to asking you any profile questions?
Primarily, if the agent attempts to sell you any cruise product before asking you a single question (getting a profile), immediately say goodbye!
Do not hesitate for one second. Immediately leave or hang-up the telephone.
Do this even if told the cruise is free. (Well, maybe not free, but you get the point). Your best interest is of no concern to that cruise planner.
Among the first things a good agent does is to provide you with his/her credentials and to obtain profile information on you. Naturally, planners collect information in various ways.
However, an agent that asks questions and writes down the information is preferable to one that simply gives you a questionnaire.
Click this link for a discussion of profile questions and the thinking behind them.
You will also notice how profile questions provide opportunity for the travel planner to reduce your potential hassles.
You may not be aware of the many ways a travel planner can use your profile to provide services and assistance to you. After all, you are not the professional.
You deserve the very best effort from him or her.
In summary, a travel agent's true desire to assist you in every way possible will shine through their behavior, and their profile questions.
Based on his or her profile of you, a "perfect" cruise planner volunteers to do whatever s/he can do in order to make your planning as worry-free, stress-free and hassle-free as humanly possible.