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Travel Agents - do they still exist?

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Thursday 10 February 2011 6.16pm
I wanted to pick up some brochures for ideas for a March sun-fix. However I can't seem to find any travel agencies locally or indeed even in Central London.

Are they a thing of the past?
Thursday 10 February 2011 7.28pm
Surrey Quays has two travel agents, one upstairs and one downstairs.
Thursday 10 February 2011 10.13pm
Yes - can vouch for the travel agents in Surrey Quays.
Friday 11 February 2011 12.09am
I agree, there are a plethora of travel agents all over London, but they must be experiencing difficult times, and not just because of the downturn.
I honestly cannot remember the last time that I used one to book a holiday, I remember going in Thomas Cook at Surrey Quays in order to split a 100 note into two 50's so that I could enclose one each for my two German grand-children for their Christmas gift, but that's it.
Travel agents were okay in the '70s and '80s when most people wanted a two week trip to the Costas/Greek Islands/Portugal/Majorca/Ibiza wherever. Just give the agent the money, then turn up at the airport.
People evolve, things and horizons change.
Following my divorce in 1973, until I eventually surrendered to the inevitable in 1981, I would travel to Heathrow or Gatwick, scan the departure board, make a choice and go wherever I fancied, hop in a taxi on arrival to a decent hotel then chill out by the pool or beach until I got low on cash then regretfully return to this blighted isle.
For years now my wife and I have rented a house wherever we want to go, via various websites, then arrange flights/car hire the same way.
Get off the plane, pick up the car, make sure that I get the seat that has no steering wheel in front of it, and go where you want, when you want, ( pull into that bar's parking lot love, I'll have a sensible vodka and tonic and you can have a diet coke).
Those group meetings in the hotel lounge where reps try to sell you trips and excursions, and advise you how much a postcard stamp costs, and where the Post Office is are a nightmare from the past thank Christ.
Friday 11 February 2011 2.36am
I used to love going in to pick up a load of brochures and browsing through them. Never went anywhere though...
Friday 11 February 2011 8.17am
You've brought back memories of my first ever foreign holiday, Tom. August 1966, two weeks Majorca. Can't remember how much it cost, but I do remember taking thirty quid spending money and coming back with a fiver. A Bacardi and Coke cost the peseta equivelent of one shiling and sixpence, (seven and a half pence in today's dosh.) It was two thirds Bacardi in the glass and a bottle of Coke by the side to top up. Me and my three mates met at West London Air Terminal and got the coach to 'London Airport.) It wasn't called Heathrow back then. The plane was an old turbo prop, but it got us there and back.
Seems like yesterday.
Friday 11 February 2011 10.17am
There's a travel agent in Hays Galleria near London Bridge. Or there was - think it's still there.
Friday 11 February 2011 10.45am
Its a Flightcentre I think...they always have a some good brochures
Friday 11 February 2011 11.46am
Baxter Hoare were in Borough High Street until recently - I booked my first trip to NYC with them. They are still behind Borough Market in Winchester Walk.
Friday 11 February 2011 12.37pm
they are still around, and some people do still use them, but mostly, if you know what you want, and you want cheap, it's better to go via an internet site.

However, if you've not idea what, or where you want, and money is not an issue, then they're great places to go to.

We got our round the world flight tickets from a travel agent up near Holborn somewhere, after we'd seen a similar deal online.
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