How to Become a Top Travel Agent: 4 Tips from the Pros
Success in any career depends on an immutable desire to grow. No one can really reach a great level of success in their field without this underlying quality. Travel agents have it no differently. What does it mean to be a great travel agent? How can you do better? Today we’ll look at all these questions and more so you can be on your way to the top.
Travel is one of the biggest industries in the world. It serves millions of people every day to achieve their goals with comfort. Travel agents are the lifeblood of this industry. Most of us have heard someone else’s travel horror story. If you’re a travel agent, chances are you know exactly where the travel agent went wrong in those stories.
Let’s get to the 4 tips that the top travel agents recommend you follow to be a great travel agent.
This is simply another way of saying that you need to stay organized. It’s a key skill to have for success in any job, to be honest. Just go through any list of characteristics that successful people claim are really important and you’ll find being organized is right up there.
To be organized takes on a whole new meaning for a travel agent, beyond the conventional understanding of the word. Think back to a complex task you managed to pull off successfully. We’re sure that thorough planning of each step in the process was a given.
Now think about all the aspects that go into travelling. First comes the purpose – travelling for business will present different needs than travelling for vacation. Next, you have all the granular details like length of visit, budget, accommodation, special requests, transport, extra-curricular activities…the list goes on and on.
Now add to that the fact that you’re not just planning the trips for one individual, well we hope so at least. Making travel arrangements for several people each with their own demands and needs and satisfying them all needs an incredible amount of planning so you can stay on top of all the tasks.
This is why the top travel agents cite being organized as their biggest tip to up and coming agents.
Look, if people just wanted to book a flight, hotel, and cab they could have just done so themselves. The expectation when dealing with a travel agent is that they will have someone to support them through the process.
This doesn’t just mean taking care of the arrangements for them and disappearing. This means that even when they’re on their travels, you continue to check in on them and respond to any needs that they may have in the middle of their trip.
The top travel agents are proactive in their support. They take an interest in the trip as soon as the clients tell them about it. They ask sincere and genuine questions to show that they really want to maximize the value that the client receives from this trip.
Once the client has left, these agents always recommend checking in with the travellers sporadically. If you can assist them in any way, why shouldn’t you? They point out that many travel agents disappear after the clients have departed and don’t assist them in any way.
It’s very possible that the bad experience that the traveller is having has nothing to do with you, however, you’re the only one they’re familiar with and If you abandon them too then your reputation falls as well. In contrast, if you’re able to help out, or even just hear them out you become a dependable figure whose reputation is enhanced.
An Eye for Detail
As a travel agent you’re supposed to know more about the location and the intricacies of travelling than your clients. This means that you really need to keep your eyes peeled for anything that the client may have missed and would affect them a lot.
The top travel agents are able to predict the client’s needs based on not just the information they’ve provided but also the observations that they have made themselves. It is often these observations that prove their value in truth.
For instance, a client may mention offhand that one of their family members is disabled. They may be thinking of going somewhere where disabilities aren’t catered to in the same way as they’re used to. This is where you can step in and advise them to go in a different direction, keeping in mind the rest of their requirements. Speaking of requirements brings us to our next point.
Those among us who travel frequently know that it’s an experience that we’ll remember for a lifetime. Your aim should always be to inculcate a lifelong love for travelling for your clients. This can only be done if you are in tune with what they desire.
Anyone can go to a tourist hotspot in the world, have a couple of drinks, and relax by the beach. To be perfectly candid, most people would be satisfied with just that as well. The truly top travel agents are able to deliver something unique to each client so that they get an experience that has meaning to them personally.
This is how the top travel agents operate in today’s world. There is plenty of competition in the field but the only person you should truly focus on competing against is yourself. Follow these tips to climb the ladder of success and become of the best travel agents out there.