You always have a choice when it comes to purchasing an airline ticket.
1. Calling a travel agency:
Calling a travel agency is always a good first step in trying to get a general idea of prices and schedules. A travel agent will be able to pull all available flights to your destination on one screen and give you a complete report of all available options. There are different agencies; some are non-specialty leisure travel agencies who usually have access to regular published airline fares, some are agencies that specialize in one or several regions, usually with better prices and selections and knowledge about that specific area. Many such agencies are able to offer special consolidator or wholesale fares. Those are fares, negotiated by airlines and available for sale only through a specific travel agency. Check if the travel agency you’re calling sells consolidator airfares – that usually means big savings for you!
2. Calling the airline directly:
We recommend you calling airline directly when you’re cashing in your frequent flier miles, using special vouchers and generally need a special service, and not just when buying a regular ticket. With very few exceptions, you will always have a choice of airlines flying to your destination in Russia/CIS. Sometimes, when code-sharing (partner) airlines are involved, you don’t even know which airlines service your destination city, so a call to a travel agent first is always a good first step. Sure, go ahead and call the airline – see if your travel agent did his or her homework right. But generally speaking, you will unlikely be able to get a better deal directly from an airline then from dealing with a travel agent. Another downside to calling airlines for rates directly is that you never know if you’re quoted the absolute lowest price available. In most cases, you will not be offered sales or deals over the phone unless you ask for a specific promotion.
3. Buying your ticket on the Internet:
While there is nothing wrong with buying a ticket on the Internet, doing it for adoption travel may not always be a good idea. Here’s why. Most Internet-based travel mega sites, such as Travelocity.com, LastMinuteTravel.com, Orbitz.com and others will offer you an easy, quick and sometimes well-priced way to buy your ticket, but you will never get any personal service with your purchase. Whereas this personal service is not extremely important during a regular leisure trip, it is a must when traveling for an adoption. There are more unforeseen circumstances than you can think of. You will almost certainly need to speak to a live person who knows your itinerary and is able to help you right away. Sites like Priceline.com may get you a real bargain on your international ticket, but you will not be able to specify exact times or routing of your trip, change your travel dates or talk to anyone about your particular reservation on the phone.
Go To Russia has an online booking engine with special international consolidator (wholesale) fares on our website. You can check these special fares and reserve your tickets 24 hours a day online. Of course, it’s safe and secure to book on our website. It’s also a good idea to check with us if regular published fares could match or beat these “wholesale” fares – just call our agents and they’ll be happy to check on that for you.
We suggest you do your own research on the Internet, and find a travel agency most qualified to assist you with your travel plans.
This is what’s important to ask when choosing a travel agency:
1. Does the agency specialize in adoption travel, or at least works with adoptive parents on a regular basis?
2. Is the agency a consolidator (have direct contract rates with airlines) to the region you’re flying to?
3. Will the agency give you several names/phone numbers of adoption agencies recommending it?
4. Does the agency offer adoption specials or special adoption one-way fares for children?
5. Does the agency have offices in the country you’re traveling to?
A typical travel agency not dealing with adoption travel requests on a daily basis will not be able to provide you with specific information about your destination and will not have any special adoption fares. It also helps for your travel agency to be able to help with all other travel-related issues: getting a passport, visa, travel insurance, assist with hotels in Russia/CIS, pick you up from the airport there, etc.
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