A travel agent business is one of the hottest businesses to start from home these days. If you are planning to set up your own travel business, then here are a few things you need to consider:
* Do you need any special training or education?
* Do you want to pursue this as part-time or full-time?
* Do you have family support?
* Do you have a spare room in your house to set up an office?
* Would you require an extra phone line?
* What sort of office equipment you need?
* Do you love this job?
* How much money you want to make?
* Do you have the contacts or know how to make contacts needed to pursue this business?
* Do you want to put the necessary effort into this business?
The answers to these questions will help you draw up a realistic business plan.
Start Up Costs:
The cost of starting a travel agent business may range from a few cents to several thousand dollars depending on your own goals and needs. You may start by becoming a sales representative of a local travel agency. In this case, you need to sell packages devised by the travel agency and earn a commission on each sale.
The other way to start a travel agent business is to become a franchise. The fee, in this case, may vary from a few hundred dollars to $10,000 or more. But this business plan offers several advantages. The most important of these is that it's quick and easy to set up. You can start your travel agent business in just a few days.
You earn more also because you get handsome commission splits, based on the fees that you have paid. A moderate fee can get you 60/40 commission split while a high fee may fetch you 80/20 split.
Theoretically, the fee depends on what you are getting like training, support, etc. Sometimes, agencies charge high fees to discourage unproductive agents. Other start-up expenses may include: business cards, registration with local or state government.
You don't need any formal college degree to start a travel agent business but you must be presentable. This is one business that lays great store on an individual's looks, style of dressing and selling skills. You should always have a pleasant, cheerful attitude, no matter how rude the client gets.
Computer knowledge is an additional advantage. You should be able to make online bookings, send mail and respond to clients using customized messenger services. You should also be familiar with tax and accounting programs. These will help reduce costs, and introduce efficiency in your day-to-day business management.
You may also want to get a Certified Travel Counselor (CTC) designation by enrolling in courses with the Travel Institute which also offers marketing and sales development courses and destination specialist programs. These courses provide a detailed knowledge of various regions such as North America, Western Europe, the Caribbean, and the Pacific Rim. Personal travel experience or experience as a reservation agent is another additional advantage.
You must remember that a good travel agent must provide full and complete:
* advice on destinations, weather conditions, restaurants, tourist attractions, and recreation
* information on transportation, hotel accommodations, car rentals, tours, and recreation arrangements
* information on customs regulations, papers required (passports, visas, and vaccination certificates), and currency exchange rates to international travelers
* information on departure and arrival times, fares, and hotel ratings and accommodations evaluation of comfort, cleanliness, and quality of food and service of hotels, resorts, and restaurants
An average travel agent business can easily make around $25,000 a year. This figure can go up sharply for those travel firms that invest heavily in promotion, and who have people to can sell travel packages with a smile. So, if you love travel and enjoy selling exotic packages then this is the business for you.
Chris Navi I am a true freelance internet advertiser who dabbles in website design. You can check out resources for having a profitable mail business at my website
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