Originally Posted by sunseeker55
we had booked thru an agent, and some friends of ours booked with the line and they got onboard credit and a free excursion which we didn't get and our agent said she couldn't get those for us.
Find another agent! Any time the cruise line offers something like that, the agent can get it for you. This is why it pays to find a Cruise Specialist as many travel agents are not trained in cruises.
I once met an agent onboard a cruise when we were seated with her at lunch. I asked her what she did and she said she was a travel agent with 20 years experience. I remarked that she must have been on alot of cruises - imagine my surprise when she said this was her first cruise! I asked her how she could sell something she knew nothing about and her partner chimed in that she was very good at it. I thought to myself she was very good at lying to people!
As with any business, there are alot of tricks of the trade and a specialist will always be better trained and more aware than a generalist. If you have a problem with your feet, you go see a podiatrist because they're specifically trained in that area of expertise and know a great deal more than a general practitioner. This same principle is true in all areas of life.
Booking directly with the cruise line is fine if you don't have any problems. But if you have a problem, that's when a Cruise Specialist can be invaluable. Let them do the work so you don't have to - it'll make your life less stressful. Sorry - didn't mean for that to sound like a commercial for agents, but you'd be surprised what they can do for you that the cruise line won't.