The job description of a travel agent is targeted at helping individuals organize their desired holiday even with a limited budget.
Whenever people travel to a new country where they probably do not know anyone, they always require the service of a travel agent to easily navigate around the environment.
Because they always have to work based on the budget of their client’s, most travel agents prefer assisting affluent clients.
But, no matter the client’s budget, there will always be a travel agent willing to help organise their trip or holiday.
To become a good travel agent, knowing and understanding your job description is of uttermost importance.
Client’s as well as employers also prefer working with those who possess certain skills.
These skills as well as tips on how to attract affluent clients will be discussed in the course of this guide on the job description of a travel agent.
What does a travel agent do?
The role of a travel agent is to assist individuals plan and organise their holiday. They provide advice on what tourist attraction, events and places to visit. Usually, they work with whatever budget decided on and set out by the person planning the holiday.
Some of the duties of a travel agent usually featured in their job description include planning, managing budget as well as giving necessary advice about visa and passport
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What are the duties and responsibilities of a travel agent?
Although the duties and responsibilities of a travel agent may vary in different countries.
It may also vary depending on your employer.
But, irrespective of location and employers, here are the common duties and responsibilities usually featured in most travel agent job descriptions.
1. Plan and sell transport, accommodation and insurance
It is the duty of a travel agent to plan and also sell transport services like transportation and accommodation.
They are also expected to assist clients book transportation and make accommodation reservations and of course, receive and make payment for these services.
2. Work with clients to determine what they need
Travel agents are also expected to work with clients to determine their needs.
They study the preference of each client and based on their budget provide advice.
They give advice on the best mode of transportation, destination and cost.
3. Provide necessary information to clients.
One of the responsibilities of a travel agent to provide relevant and necessary information to travelers.
They provide maps, local customs regulations and events to travelers.
4. Attend travel seminars
Travel agents regularly attend travel seminars.
This is in order to stay updated on recent tourism trends.
5. Resolve travel complaints
They also receive complaints from clients and properly attend to them.
Whenever it is necessary, they make refunds to travelers.
Some other duties and responsibilities of a travel agent include:
- Make use of promotional methods and prepare promotional materials to sell travel guidebooks and tour packages.
- Take records of all necessary data of clients.
- Maintain statistics and financial record.
- Meet set out sales and profit targets.
- Connect and network with tour operations.
- Carry out research to identify best pricing and options based on the preference of clients.
What qualifications are required to become a travel agent?
Typically, a degree in any course in college or a university is acceptable.
But, having a degree in tourism, leisure, language, hospitality travel and management are advantageous.
Experience in working with travel companies or agencies is a plus.
Multilingual individuals are also given preference when seeking for a travel agent to employ or work with.
Travel agents are also required to have knowledge of the use of basic computer software.
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What skills and personality suit a travel agent?
In order to properly carry out the duties and responsibilities of a travel agent, most employers look out for certain skills.
These skills are also featured in the job description of a travel agent.
As such individuals aspiring to become travel agents must possess them.
Some of such skills include:
1. Communication skill
A good communication skill is essentially for every travel agent to possess.
As one, you should be able to communicate every aspect of your job in writing and also verbally.
2. Honesty and trustworthiness
It is also very important for a travel agent to be honest and trustworthy as well.
Tourists who have probably never been to a place will almost be totally dependent on you.
As such you have to be faithful to them and never try to cheat or exploit them.
Obviously, tourists who do not speak the language of the people whose land they have just visited will feel more at home when in the hands of a travel agent who can speak their language as well as the new language.
As such, travel agents who can speak more than one popular or rather international language are always preferred.
4. Interpersonal skills
As a travel agent, you should be able to create and maintain good relationships with your clients.
Doing this will help you know their preference and as such, serve them better.
5. Commercially aware
This is a very essential skill every travel agent should possess.
A good travel agent should have strong sales and commercial awareness.
Not all clients are affluent, even affluent clients still worked with a budget.
Therefore a good travel agent should know how to work with a budget.
As one, you should know the most cost effective way to satisfy all your clients based on their different budgets.
7. Negotiation skills
It is also necessary for a travel agent to have strong negotiation skills.
That’s the only way you can really help clients stay with their budget.
This way you can get quality things for minimum cost.
All of these skills makes the job easier and smoother. It helps you give your clients the best travel experience.
Some of them can be learned and even developed before starting a career in this line.
Or, they can also be learned and/or developed on the job.
Whichever way, what matters is that you have them.
Where do travel agents work?
Most college or university graduates enter the Field as junior staff.
After years of experience and improving qualification, they are then promoted to senior and managerial positions.
Some of the typical employers travel agents are:
- Cruise lines
- Travel operators
- Package holiday operators
- Independent travel agents
Employers place job vacancies on local or national newspapers, travel publications television stations and online as well.
How much do travel agents make?
On an average travel agents in the United States make up to $36,460 per year.
Less experienced travel agents may earn as low as $30,000, whereas, more experienced one may earn as high as $61,890 per year.
Your pay as a travel agent is determined by your location, the agency you work for and experience.
More experienced and qualified travel agents may earn more than their less experienced and qualified colleagues.
How can I gain new travel clients?
As a travel agent your job is totally dependent on people who travel.
As such, you want to know more of them as well as gain their trust.
According to travel planners, here are some tips on how travel agents can gain new clients
1. Position yourself as an expert
Make people see you as an expert or specialist.
Most top travel agents or rather agencies have been able to build a record of professionalism and expertise.
As a result whenever affluent or non affluent clients require such service they are always the first in mind no matter the cost.
That is what you too should do, sell yourself as an expert or specialist travel agent. Who has great knowledge in that area.
2. Try complicated things out
Most independent travel agents are usually afraid of engaging in complicated trips.
But, if you keep avoiding complicated trips, how do you gain expertise and knowledge?
Take necessary safety precautions, but, don’t be afraid to attempt more complicated things.
3. Seek for referrals and give reward for any
This may cost some money, but it is a very effective way of gaining new clients.
Give a discount or promise a free gift to existing clients whenever they leave a great review for you online, or tell someone about you.
And, whenever they keep their part of the bargain, be honest enough to keep your part as well.
4. Become active on social media
The importance of an active social media life canne be over emphasized especially for entrepreneurs.
A lot of people use the various social media platforms.
Therefore it is a great platform to gain new travel clients, just make sure you always advertise yourself as one.
You can also sign up for google my business, that way people searching for travel agents online can easily find you.
5. Get more knowledge
No matter what level you get to, don’t get satisfied with knowledge.
Keep attending travel seminars and training, gain as much knowledge on travel as possible.
That way you can confidently handle any travel situation.
How do I get luxury travel clients?
It is the desire of every travel agent to get luxury clients.
Most times, rich clients mean more money, more tips and comfort as well.
According to travel market, here are some tips on how a travel agent can get luxury clients
- Offer personalized luxury vacations
- Advertise expensive and quality products
- Become a member of luxury travel consortium
- Mix, interact and connect with the elite
- Have charity involvement
- Build good relationship with the middle class
The fact that you want affluent clients does not make you a gold digger.
It is business, a travel agents job description is aimed at satisfying clients and making money as well.
And in business, you want to make as much money as possible.
Summary of travel agent job description guide
When creating a travel agent resume, you should include your experience, skills and qualifications.
Never overlook the importance of making reference to these things during an interview.
Don’t hesitate to make maximum use of this guide on the job description of a travel agent to create that professional resume.
Although this article was written with prospective travel agents in mind, it can be used for creating a travel agent job description posting.
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