Learn to be a Travel Agent
What travel agents do:
A home-based travel agents job is to help the client find the best value for their money. Not the cheapest deal... no one wants to stay at a cockroach infested hotel in the wrong part of town. The travel agent first finds out how many people are going and their ages. If the trip is outside the USA whether the clients need passports or visas. What destination they want to visit, dates, and the resort, hotel, cruise and room preferences. Also any special needs of the clients.
After some research, the agent presents one or two travel packages to the client. If the client agrees to the package and price, the agent collects the credit card information from the client and passes that information on to the supplier, resort or cruise line.
The suppliers don’t pay commissions until the client comes back from their trip. So if you sold an Alaska cruise for July to a client in March, you would not get paid for 5 months. The reason for this is the client might not go due to illness or death, and if the clients don’t go, you don’t get paid.
How Do Home-Based Travel Agents Get Paid and How Much Can You Earn...
Clients do not pay you commissions. The suppliers do, because you are bringing them sales. Each supplier sets their own commission rates form 5% to 30% but most pay 10% to 15% excluding taxes or fees.
The average commission is $200 to $500 for a 7 day vacation for a family of four. Honeymoon commissions usually range from $500 to $1,000. Commissions from booking groups can range from $1,000 to $50,000. So how much money you make, depends on how many of these types of vacations you sell each year. It is not uncommon for full time home-based travel agents to make a six figure income.
AARC host agency will provide all the training you will need to become a travel agent. However, the following skills will improve your chances of success.
Sales and Marketing...
It is hard to overstate the importance of sales and marketing skills. New travel agents can’t wait for their first sale, but you must actively market your services first to get clients.
Your most important asset is your database. A database is simply a list of people and their contact information. Your Christmas list is a database. Start with everyone you know, then you’ll need to grow it by attracting new clients. Keeping detailed notes on client preferences and past travel can help you suggest new itineraries and destinations they might not have considered. AARC host agency provides free marketing programs to your database. As well as programs to grow your database.
Good computer skills are essential. You’ll be working with reservation systems, and databases. Building and maintaining social media like: Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube and Pinterest can help you market your services.
Clients will often communicate with you through email, so good grammar skills are also needed. Good math skills are important for calculating fares and timetables. Knowledge of geography is also important, as your clients may travel all over the world.
People persons who love to help other people and make dream vacations come true. People who love to travel themselves make the best agents. Excellent communication skills and being detailed oriented are abilities all travel agents need.
On occasion, you may work with upset travelers whose plans have been suddenly altered and you’ll need patience and sensitivity to deal with their problems. The ability to think logically when planning itineraries and a belief in the importance of good customer service will help you.