Deciding where we wanted to go on our big trip this year was easy. Vishnu and I have always talked about visiting Italy together, so that was a no brainer.
Next came deciding if we wanted to book a group tour package or do our own thing. After lots of back and forth, we decided to do our own thing. While there are some fantastic options out there, our friends who have already been told us that Italy is a safe and fairly easy country to navigate. And when you’re with a group, the opportunity to try different restaurants is not always there. This alone was enough to convince me that a group tour was not for us!
Once that decision was made, we started researching all of our options. One of the very first sites I visited was Costco Travel. As I’ve blogged about in the past, my family is obsessed with Costco. I’m pretty sure my parents frequent it a couple times a week. And I’m certain that if we had one closer to us, I’d be doing the same!
Anyway, after thinking through all of the different ways we could book our travel, Vishnu and I had a big decision to make. Do we book everything separately (airfare, hotels, tours, inter-country travel, etc.) or do we use Costco and have them book all of the major stuff for us?
We decided to go with Costco and here’s why…
When we were in the initial stages of planning, Vishnu was busy with work. And seeing that I’ve only been to London (through work), I honestly didn’t feel comfortable or confident enough to take the planning on myself.
While we’re pretty sure booking through Costco was the more expensive option, we’re very happy with our decision (so far!). Instead of spending weeks researching every last detail of our trip, all we had to do was call Costco Travel, tell them what we wanted, and voila…we were all set!
Some additional perks of booking with Costco include free meals, bottles of wine, free breakfast, free Wi-Fi, etc. Of course, this depends on where you go and stay, but it’s a nice touch! And while we’re not concerned about anything major happening during our trip, it’s nice to know that Costco Travel is only a phone call away.
So here’s how the booking process went…
I called the Costco Travel number and was connected to knowledgeable agent. Thank goodness because I had lots of questions! I told her we wanted to deviate from the packages listed on the site, and she assured me we could create our own custom travel package for no additional cost.
She asked for our dates of travel, which countries we wanted to visit, and how long we wanted to stay in each. She was even able to provide some insight based on other customers’ experiences! Based on all of that information, she booked our airport transfers and inter-country travel as well. Once those details were settled, she asked if we wanted to stick with the suggested hotels or pick different ones. This is where Vishnu’s research skills came in to play. He spent some time on the Costco Travel site beforehand and looked at all of the hotel and room options. So when we got on the phone with the agent, we knew exactly where we wanted to stay. Once the agent booked everything for us, we reviewed it a couple of times. She then assured me that all of our tickets/vouchers would be mailed to us 30-45 days before our trip (which they were).
That. Was. It.
I promise Costco did not pay me to write this post! I honestly just love their travel site and find it to be convenient and easy to use, and their agents are wonderful, patient people. Like I said, it probably cost us a tad bit more to go this route, but the amount of stress that was lifted off of our shoulders over the last few months makes it all worth it.
T minus six days and counting! I can’t wait!!!
Have you ever used Costco Travel to book a trip?
If tomorrow you could pack up and travel anywhere in the world, where would you go first?