The new rules of sales and service

Summary (by author)

Are you old enough to remember when travel agents were an essential part of your life? To book a vacation you had to go to a travel agent. There was no other choice. Every town had at least one, and in the big cities travel agencies were on every corner.

First, before you set foot in the travel agency, you might do a little research about the sort of vacation you had in mind. Warm weather at a beach? Or perhaps a week of skiing? Maybe a cruise? Did you want to go somewhere exotic and far away? Or nearby within driving distance?

Doing the research was really, really difficult.

You would ask friends for recommendations, but they knew only so much. You could read a travel magazine, but with only a limited number of pages in each issue, it was hardly comprehensive. Guidebooks helped, but because of the book publication cycles, they were inevitably dated. If you wanted to compare different destinations, you needed more than one guidebook. And by definition, a book is just one person’s opinion—the author’s. No matter how much research you did, it was never enough to get a total picture of a potential holiday location.

Sooner or later you had to go into that travel agency, and that’s when you surrendered control of the already imperfect process: You had to put yourself at the mercy of a salesperson. As she sat behind a terminal, she tossed out destination options, quoted prices for flights and rental cars, and suggested hotels. Perhaps she loaded you up with a bunch of brochures to look through.

The best travel agents were adept at matching destinations, experiences, and properties to a traveler’s needs. They built a loyal following and made a good living via repeat business and word-of-mouth referrals.

But too often, agents weren’t very good and just sold what was most convenient. They would steer clients to the easy sale in Florida instead of the more complicated booking at a small resort on an obscure island in the French-speaking part of the Caribbean. Worse, unscrupulous agents would sell crappy cruises simply because they earned additional commissions from low-end operators desperate to fill their ships.


In Google drive, make sure you have the list view selected and not grid, then you can see the ebook extension you need. Epub works best for most cases. Here are brief instructions:

To Read on Android Phone:

To Read on PC or Tablet:

  • Download PDF and read with Acrobat Reader Free:

Available in .epub, .mobi, .pdf or kindle

Scroll to Top