Should you use a travel agent or book it yourself?

With the right yearly budget, vacations can be the most rewarding consequence of mastering your personal finances. No stressing about costs or missed time at work. Just beachside relaxation.

But putting together that trip is an entirely different process…

Some people have a blast finding the best deals on airfare, hotels and activities; others would rather pay somebody else to do it for them.

Here’s our tips on deciding between a travel agent or booking everything yourself.

Travel agents are expensive. Travel agents make money through commissions, kickbacks and perks from partnered brands. Most times, it’s cheaper to plan your own trip. You can use credit card points and miles to save on hotels, flights and rental cars.

Keep in mind, although travel agents will most likely be more expensive overall, their sponsored deals will give you access to higher quality deals for that higher price tag. It’s up to you if that upgrade is worth the added cost.

Travel agents save time. It can take weeks of planning and research to find the best deals on your own. Travel agents know about seasonal trends, price fluctuations and intricate details about hidden fees. In short, they know what they’re looking for and the most efficient ways to find them.

Booking with travel agents means giving up some control. Obviously a travel agent can’t force you into any decisions, but you won’t have the same kind of independence that you would if you were booking on your own.

When doing everything yourself, you’ll inherently control every step in the process. Which hotels you look at and which activities you add to the plan will be entirely up to you. If you don’t like being sold on particular deals or destinations, this point is important to consider.

Earlier, we mentioned that vacation planning can be one of the greatest rewards of a well planned out yearly budget. If you’ve checked off that part of the process, we hope this quick guide gave you a good idea of whether to move forward on your own or go with some professional help.

If, however, you’re still struggling with the budget part, we’re here to help!

One of our sponsored products that we’ve been promoting this month is Magnifi- the first fiduciary AI investing assistant.

We’ve highlighted a ton of its features that we think could be a game changer for our fellow personal finance junkies. And one is tailor made for building a plan to save for a vacation.

Here’s our guide on using Magnifi to save up for a dream vacation.

Cheers to getting away!

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