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Sodha Travel Blog

Feb 1

Travel Consultants Vs. Travel Agents: What's the Difference?

What is the difference between a travel agent and a travel consultant? The shift started in the 1990's with the introduction of online booking sites. Travelers who once reserved air tickets and hotels directly with a travel agent now had access to book directly. In the following 25+ years, thousands of agencies closed their doors and the business models shifted from distributors to specialists.

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Posted by Allison Sodha at 11:05 PM

Posted in Accommodations, Transportation, Education

Sep 2

What Travelers Need to Know About the India UDAN Scheme

UDAN (‘Ude Desh Ka Aam Naagrik’) is a unique Indian airline system developed to stimulate regional connectivity through a market based mechanism. The scheme was launched earlier this year and Prime Minister Narendra Modi flagged off the first flight on April 27th from Shimla to New Delhi.

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Posted by Datri Sodha at 05:15 PM

Posted in Transportation, Airlines

Jun 15

All Aboard the Tiger Express, India's Newest Semi-Luxury Tourist Train

The Tiger Express is off to a "roaring" start! India's newest semi-luxury train offers 6 day/5 night packages from Delhi to Bandhavgarh and Kanha national parks. (Kanha is also included in Sodha Travel's popular Jungle Book itinerary.) Named for the most notable resident of the parks, Tiger Express is the first wildlife circuit collaboration between the Indian Railways and Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC). 

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Posted by Allison Sodha at 12:29 PM

Posted in India, Transportation, Adventure

Sep 4

New Prototypes of Indian Railways Coaches

For many, the idea of experiencing India by train is idyllic. Visions loom of sipping chai in a plush compartment while observing the countryside dotting the landscape. There is also something refreshingly charming when traveling by trains, perhaps because the tradition is an integral part of the local transportation. The rail system serves nearly 20 million people at 7,500 stations daily.

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Posted by Allison Sodha at 03:40 PM

Posted in India, Transportation

Jan 23

An Open Letter to the Airline Industry: Customer Service? Prove It.

Dear Airline Industry,

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Posted by Allison Sodha at 04:27 AM

Posted in Transportation, Airlines

Dec 21

Air Travel and the Value of Travel Insurance

I have written quite a few posts about travel insurance - the benefits, the policies, and why I always recommend coverage for clients. I also make sure to personally purchase a policy for each and every trip abroad. For the past two weeks, several of our clients have been met with unfortunate circumstances when traveling. All of the incidents have been associated with air travel, which is not surprising to us, especially this time of year. Flights are oversold, winter weather is unpredictable, and the busy holiday season makes it difficult for airlines to efficiently accommodate the passengers.

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Posted by Allison Sodha at 06:10 AM

Posted in Transportation, Airlines, Travel Insurance

Sep 5

Local Transportation in Sri Lanka

Last week, I received an email inquiry regarding local transportation in Sri Lanka. A Sodha Traveler, Richard, is traveling to the Emerald Isle in November on an independent itinerary. He asked our team, "What are the best options for traveling between destinations? Are buses available and safe? Is train travel suggested?" Here are Sodha Travel's suggestions for local transportation in Sri Lanka:

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Posted by Allison Sodha at 06:50 AM

Posted in Transportation, Sri Lanka

Aug 26

Overnight Indian Trains - Idyllic or Horrifying?

Playful. Astonishing. Uncomfortable. Microcosm. These were just a few responses we received to our recent Facebook post, "Describe Indian train travel in one word." The post was prompted by a recent email from a Sodha Traveler, Paul, regarding the Indian rail system:

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Posted by Allison Sodha at 09:42 AM

Posted in India, Accommodations, Transportation

Jun 28

Who is Responsible for the Quality of a Trip?

Scenario #1: Jane is visiting a new destination and relies on a travel agency to confirm her hotel and touring services. She arrives at the hotel, checks-in, and finds that her room does not meet her expectations. The agency quoted a 4-star property, but Jane feels it is below average. The view from her window is less than appealing, she can hear her noisy neighbors, and the air-conditioning is faulty. Later in the evening, guest services calls to follow-up and assure her room is comfortable. Jane communicates none of her concerns. Two days later, her travel agent also places a courtesy call. Again, Jane says the trip is wonderful and does not share her negative impressions about the hotel.

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Posted by Allison Sodha at 04:25 AM

Posted in Communication, Accommodations, Transportation

Apr 4

Rising Baggage Fees

We have been quite surprised by the inflated prices of international airline tickets in 2011. And with higher fuel costs, the prices will continue to rise. In the past four months, oil has risen over 25% and airlines have raised fares as many as eight times.

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Posted by Allison Sodha at 06:12 AM

Posted in Family, Transportation, Airlines

Mar 21

Introducing Travelhoppers!

For those who love to spread their wings and explore the world - or even hop from one destination to the next - be sure to check out Travelhoppers. Recently launched, Travelhoppers is a travel site that allows consumers to research, connect, and discover. I am also personally excited to be a featured contributor in the Travelhoppers community.

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Posted by Allison Sodha at 04:58 AM

Posted in Family, Accommodations, Transportation, Events, Packing, Adventure

Jan 24

The Value of Group Travel: 5 Elements to Consider Before Booking

These days, if you ask someone why they selected a tour package, destination, or travel operator, one word trumps all others: Value. However, value can mean different things to different travelers. For some, it implies a good deal or considerable savings. For others, the value is in the experience of visiting a new or exotic destination, or fulfilling a lifelong dream. Many travelers excitedly reserve a group tour based on the value of all of the above. The affordable price and enticing inclusions - international airfare, deluxe hotel accommodations, and comprehensive touring - are certainly tempting.

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Posted by Allison Sodha at 04:22 AM

Posted in Accommodations, Transportation, Airlines, Packing, Visa, Featured Tours

Dec 27

Updates: Delhi Airport Domestic Flights

As of last month, there have been terminal changes at the Delhi airport for domestic flights. Please refer to the table below:

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Posted by Allison Sodha at 03:45 AM

Posted in Transportation, Airlines, Delhi

Sep 27

Increasing Fuel Costs

Fuel costs continue to increase across India and are currently averaging Rs 55 per liter. Unfortunately, this results in higher fuel surcharges for our clients. Sodha Travel is considering alternative measures to accommodate the prices.

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Posted by Allison Sodha at 07:35 AM

Posted in Transportation

Jul 26

Update: Indian Airports

Attention travelers: Per the latest Indian government guidelines, check-in counters at domestic airports will close 45 minutes before departure. If arranging independent airport transfers, please plan your commute accordingly. Presently, airlines allow passengers to check-in up to twenty minutes before departure. (In some smaller airports, even fifteen minutes is sufficient time.)

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Posted by Allison Sodha at 03:10 AM

Posted in Transportation, Airlines

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