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Travel Special: Agency promises worry-free travel to tourists

By Han Tianyang | China Daily | Updated: 2013-11-17 07:14

Travel is supposed to help people forget their worries and pressure, but it can potentially be source of stress when the unexpected happens.

Planet Travel, a Beijing-based travel agency that mostly serves foreign tourists, has experience offering meticulous and considerate care for its customers when they encounter unplanned circumstances or must contend with an unfamiliar environment.

In the past weeklong National Holiday in October, two customers of the agency went on a trip to the Tibet autonomous region, Nepal and Bhutan.

On their return trip, however, their flight from Bhutan back to China was canceled because of a storm.

 Travel Special: Agency promises worry-free travel to tourists

Planet Travel guides and local operators. Provided to China Daily

Travel consultant Zhou Shuang was informed of the situation and immediately contacted the carrier. She learned that tickets for the same flight were only available two days later, but the customers had to be back to work the next day.

After fully evaluating all possible choices, Zhou was able to book a flight for that day by routing them through Hong Kong.

Because the new tickets could not be booked online or by phone, Zhou immediately rushed to airline's office before it closed to settle.

Then, another unexpected problem arose. After the customers were back to Beijing, they contacted the agency and asked for a compensation for excess baggage charge. They did not expect to have to pay the additional fee, but the second carrier had different regulations in baggage charge from the first one that canceled the flight.

Zhou explained with great patience that all the expense was charged by the carrier instead of the travel agency. And after all, the weather was to blame, and the airline would not compensate for such uncontrollable factor.

Finally, the customers understood and wrote a sincere letter to thank the agency staff for their services.

"In one sense, travel is full of unexpected adventures. But Planet Travel can be your reliable friend," said Liu Yan, manager of the agency.

"Customers could contact us anytime if they encounter a problem, and we will offer solutions as soon as possible."

Communication with the agency is the key to having a good trip, Liu said, citing the example of a customer who took a trip to Inner Mongolia autonomous region.

The whole trip seemed to be going smoothly, but when she asked the customer for feedback, she got a long letter complaining about the guide and the sanitary conditions of the hotel.

After careful investigation, Liu found that the hotel room was exactly the one that the agency had described to the customer before making the arrangement. And the customer was informed that the living conditions at the hotel were limited in terms of luxuries.

As to the complaint about the guide, the fact was that the road on the prairie was under repair, and to avoid possible delay, the guide moved the departure time a bit ahead.

"Under such circumstances, my suggestion for the customer is to let us know the problem in time and don't keep the unpleasant mood during the journey," Liu said.

"Usually we don't bother the customer during the journey, but if they encounter any problem and have a timely communication with us, we will try our best to solve the problems for them," she said.

"Efficient communication will save a lot of unnecessary troubles," she added.

Previously a customer ordered a three-day trip at the agency to South Korea. Considering all his requests, the agency arranged the flight on the morning of the first day and in the afternoon he could join the local touring group and go sightseeing for the rest of the day and the next day. The third day was his free time.

But because of the flight delay, the customer was not able to join the touring group that afternoon.

And he lost contact with the local guide after arriving at Seoul because his mobile phone broke down.

Using WiFi at the airport, the customer emailed the agency. Travel consultant Kuang Jiangnan contacted the agency's land operator in Seoul immediately. The customer's problem was fixed by allowing him to join the group later so as to not miss the attractions he wanted to see.

Kuang informed the customer about the arrangement via email and he was satisfied.

Planet Travel prides itself on the personal-butler-style services they provide to the clients.

Unsure about where to go this season? Or want to tour with a limited budget, or just have a short vacation? Perhaps you're tired of going to the beach each holiday and want a different travel experience.

Travel Special: Agency promises worry-free travel to tourists

Contact us:

Tel: +86(10)6409 4255

Fax: +86(10)6409 4710



(China Daily 11/17/2013 page14)

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