Many U.S. Adults Find Comfort In Traditional Travel Agents

68% of U.S. Adults Feel More Comfortable Booking Travel with Traditional Agent Cites Recent Study

PARSIPPANY, N.J., June 30 /PRNewswire/ — Travelers in the U.S. still find great value in travel agents for booking their leisure travel plans, according to a recent study commissioned by leading global distribution system (GDS) and subsidiary of Cendant Corp. (NYSE:CD) , Galileo International. The findings from the June 2005 study show that nearly 7 out of 10 U.S. adults (68%) are more comfortable booking travel plans through a traditional travel agent.

According to the poll, an advantage to more than half of U.S. adults is when an agent asks questions to better understand a travelers needs (53%) and their willingness to help customize itineraries to best fit those needs (52%), which may clearly demonstrate a comfort in the human element when booking travel. Whether it is the desire to visit multiple destinations, arrive and depart from different locations, or requiring special amenities at a hotel, travelers in the U.S. often have complex itineraries during a vacation. 49% of U.S. adults found an agent’s ability to book complex itineraries that are hard to book online as another driving factor in comfort level when working with a traditional agent to plan a vacation.

According to the research one of the perceived advantages for using a travel agent is that in a world where the traveler’s needs are becoming more complex and diverse – 65% of adults stated the ability to sit down in person with someone to discuss plans is a “must have” in booking a vacation. Additional services considered “must haves” for a traditional agency include:

* The ability to book all your travel plans, including air, lodging and car rental – 76%

* Access to real-time flight and hotel information – 73%

* Advanced knowledge about various destinations – 70%

“The study confirms that travel agents are still held in high regard by many travelers, due to their personal service, knowledge, flexibility and choice of vacation offers.”

“At Galileo we recognize the importance of the agency channel and are committed to working with our agency partners to ensure their continued success. We provide innovative tools, technology and content to help power an agency’s business,” stated Eileen Kennedy, vice president, Marketing, the Americas, Galileo. “In addition, we will continue to invest in solutions to supply agencies with the information and resources necessary to allow for differentiation and growth.”

Survey Methodology:

Harris Interactive(R) conducted the telephone survey for Galileo International between June 3 and 6, 2005 among a nationwide cross section of 1,006 U.S. adults ages 18+. Figures for age, sex, race, and region were weighted where necessary to align them with their actual proportions in the population. In theory, with a probability sample of this size, one can say with 95 percent certainty that the results for the overall sample has a sampling error of plus or minus 3 percentage points of what they would be if the entire U.S. adult population had been polled with complete accuracy.

About Galileo International:

Galileo International is a global technology leader. Its core business is providing electronic global distribution system for the travel industry through its computerized reservation systems, leading-edge products and innovative, Internet-based solutions. Galileo is a value-added distributor of travel inventory dedicated to supporting its travel supplier, agency and corporate customers and, through them, expanding traveler choice. A subsidiary of Cendant Corporation (NYSE:CD) and part of Cendant’s Travel Distribution Services Division, Galileo is headquartered in Parsippany, NJ, and has offices worldwide. Visit

About Cendant Travel Distribution Services:

Cendant Corporation’s (NYSE:CD) Travel Distribution Services division, is one of the world’s largest and most geographically diverse collections of travel brands and distribution businesses. The division, employing nearly 9,000 people in approximately 120 countries, includes: a leading global distribution system (GDS) company (Galileo), serving more than 44,000 travel agencies and over 60,000 hotels; hotel distribution and services businesses (Neat Group(R), THOR(R), TRUST and WizCom(R)); leading online travel agencies (CheapTickets(R),,,, Orbitz(R), and; an airline market intelligence company (Shepherd Systems); an international travel technology and software company (Travelwire); a leading international provider of long-haul air travel and travel product consolidator (Travel 2(R)/Travel 4(R)); online global corporate travel management solutions (Orbitz for Business(R) and Travelport(R)); and a leading wholesaler and global online provider of hotels, destination services, travel packages and group tours (Gullivers Travel Associates, and Travel Bound, Inc.).

About Harris Interactive(R)

Harris Interactive Inc. (, the 15th largest and fastest-growing market research firm in the world, is a Rochester, NY-based global research company that blends premier strategic consulting with innovative and efficient methods of investigation, analysis and application. Known for The Harris Poll(R) and for pioneering Internet-based research methods, Harris Interactive conducts proprietary and public research to help its clients achieve clear, material and enduring results. Harris Interactive combines its intellectual capital, databases and technology to advance market leadership through its U.S. offices and wholly owned subsidiaries, HI Europe in London (, Novatris in Paris (, and through an independent global network of affiliate market research companies. EOE M/F/D/V

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