The internet is merely fifteen or so years old, if it were human it would be adolescent, not yet educated and nowhere near grown up.
We do business with traditional companies that have celebrated their centenary and we think they are old…in internet terms, five years is old. To those of you who are over fifty and went to school when perhaps slide rules were the order of the day, perhaps lucky enough to be allowed to use a calculator toward the end of your school years….you will appreciate what has happened over recent times.
Did you learn about the industrial revolution; when stone age man invented the wheel; when man conquered space (a turn of phrase)…well the internet and other forms of the “digital revolution” will go down in history as one of the periods that changed the way we think.
From the old eight-track cassette or reel-to-reel we now have amazing inventions such as the i-pod mp3 music players; dvd players, not to mention talk interactive computers and electronically controlled houses that sense and manage your every need.
How do you book and plan your holiday; how do you book a flight or an hotel, perhaps a guest lodge. Yes, there are still travellers who go the traditional route of the suburban travel advisor or agent, I do think there remains a need, if you need destination information, cannot type and do not have access to a computer, this is for you. For the rest of us, type in “holiday house rent Port Alfred” and you will be amazed how easy it really is, faced with more opportunities and information than anyone would ever need. You will be invited to visit sites with information; with holiday homes to rent; B&B and guesthouse accommodation catering for every need or desire.
Find your own personal favourite site and save it under your favourite sites. Most also offer a call centre service number enabling you to reach them at any time while travelling. What tips have I got for you, how can you make it a simple seamless process:
1. Typing in accurate and meaningful key words into a good search engine is the first step. Just to type the words “accommodation Port Alfred” will result in thousands and thousands of options. One needs to be as specific as possible, if it is a holiday house you want to rent say so, a guest house say so. The more information you communicate or give to the search engine, the better quality responsae will be forthcoming
2. If you are in South Africa, select the “South African Sites only” button if your search engine has one. This will succeed in eliminating sites not specialising in your chosen area.
3. Once your search results are visible, read the small print, ensure that the site you click on is really an accommodation site, usually clearly visible in the site name or visible phrase in the summary. Don’t hesitate to go to any site clearly matching your need in the top ten pages.
4. Once selecting the site, if the first page is clear’ professional and a dedicated accommodation portal, then stay there and search further, if not, click on your “back” key and select another one.
5. On a chosen site, search for the accommodation you require and without hesitation, when finding what you want send them an enquiry giving required dates; number of persons and contact detail.
6. Once you have done this on one site, go to two others and do the same thing, sending a total of three enquiries. The principal being that you will select the company and/or accommodation that offers you the quickest; most efficient and professional service provided they have met your needs.
7. Once you have made the booking, ensure you print the confirmation e-mail and/or whatever documents are available, file this with your other travel papers, relax and look forward to a well planned holiday.
Whenever I travel I always either send a confirmation e-mail and/or phone the establishment a day or two before my arrival….perhaps I am over cautious but this is better than a botched booking. What an absolute blessing to be able to spend quality time in a holiday destination with those you love.