I am just curious as how one becomes a travel agent. I have moved to a new state (MA) that does not have the same kind of jobs that I used to have so I am looking to branch out. I worked in Guest Relations and VIP Tours at Walt Disney World for 4 years so I figured that I might be a good person at a travel agency- the resident "Disney expert". I haven't done a whole lot of traveling otherwise but I am dying to travel and would throw myself into the job. In my other jobs I have worked in a professional marketing environment and am well-versed in all types of office duties and computer programs which I imagine would be helpful as a travel agent.
I'm not looking for anyone to offer me a job, of course, I just want to know how you all got into it, any tips that might help me when I start to look around, etc. Thanks!
Hi, I am a Travel Consultant and I am listed with Brides.com under NY & CT as well as in the magazine for both states. I was in the physical oil business and then commodiites previousy which of course has nothing to do with travel. BUT....I always traveled would plan out my friends and families trips to the minute detail and they would go to their travel agent to book it. I answered an ad years ago for an agency that was looking to train new people interested in the business. I called and went over one evening after work. To my dismay most of the women there just wanted a night out and I finished working a crazy day in the markets and I knew more than any one of them to begin with.
I told the owner of the agency, that I knew more than any of those women every would and could she teach me the rest privately. The rest is history....I know own my own agency and most of my clients are from commodities who have known me for many years and know that I am ethical in my business practices.
What is important - a love of travel and to provide services that exceeds someones expecatation of a vacation. Anyone can sell a cruise and there are companies that have huge call centers but there is no soul involved in that type of business...it is just a numbers game. That is not fulfulling to anyone except the person that owns the center, who by the way has nothing to do with travel.
Travel is about selling an experience to someone and it should be thoughtful and understand the clients desires. Whether it is a private tour in Italy or the best Luau in Hawaii that is what I do. What about beaches in the Riviera Maya after the hurricane...be careful of pictures you look at because most hotels have sandbags in the water and this would be disappointing to someone who loves the beach and not a pool.
Since you worked at WDW you understand customer service and you are way ahead of a lot of people. Also since you were in guests relations and involved in VIP tours you are an asset to an agency.
Specializing is important and WDW has a specialist program. Not everyone can know everything, but it makes you stand out. I am a specialist for Hawaii - Italy & Skiing as well as Destination Weddings & Honeymoons. I have skiied most of my life in the NorthEast but I have skiied in Switzerland both Davos and St. Moritz, and in Garmish in Germany and Austria at Lech & St. Anton. There are not many agents that know about a ski area, what is the level of difficulty for a mountain, or is there a separate area for riding?
It is never too late to change your career and if I can be of further assistance you can contact me. My website is www.HotHoneymoons.net and my contact information is listed.
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