On travel agents and admitting when you’re wrong

So I was talking to my Dad the other day, and he asks me if I’m going to be using a travel agent to book my flight to Peru. That way, he explained, I wouldn’t have to worry about winding up in Wichita or getting stuck for a week in a Bogota prison, because as an experienced professional, the agent would take care of all the little details that someone like me might miss.

“Dad, don’t be silly. Nobody uses travel agents anymore,” I replied with a knowing smile. I browsed over to cheaptickets.com and bought a one way ticket for a pretty good rate, patting myself on the back for saving the needless, pre-information age expense of a middleman.

But later, a chat with a friend revealed that I’d likely have problems with Peruvian customs if I tried to enter the country without a two-way ticket. Sure enough, my friend was right. After some googling, I learned that my airline would likely force me to buy a costly return ticket upon arrival in Peru. I thought to myself, “what else did I miss?”

So I cancelled the flight, and booked a new one through a travel agent.

Please don’t say I told you so, Dad.

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