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Travel Agent

Description:

A travel agent’s main job is to plan and sell transportation and accommodations for their customers. Travel agents recommend and determine the appropriate destinations, mode of transportation, travel dates, costs, and accommodations can also describe, plan, and arrange itineraries and sell tour packages. Expect to assist in resolving clients’ travel problems.

Education: B.S. in Hospitality and Tourism or any related in the field. Hands on experience are more valuable.

Skills: Communication skills and customer handling skills are a must.

Disclaimer_DILO:

Typical Day in The Life (DILO) or Work Schedule of someone pursuing that career. This is a fictitious calendar and is meant to give an idea of the different tasks that the professional performs and different people that the professional needs to coordinate with. This may differ from organization to organization and context.

Context DILO:

An experienced agent working for a medium sized travel agency that supports corporates as well as individual tours.

DILO, Day In The Life of:

Time Activity
9:00am Catch up on emails and pick up and respond to faxes. Dealing with complaints or refunds
10:00am – 10:45am Meeting with a couple looking for holiday destinations. Show them various options, including pictures, destination description etc. Discuss pricing and scheduling.
10.45am – 11:00am Call from a different client requesting changes to their itinerary. Change flights, hotels and taxi arrangements accordingly.
11.00am – 12:00noon Group package for a few families traveling together to US from India via a few destinations in Asia.
12:00noon – 12.30pm Lunch and research on new destinations.
12.30pm – 1:30pm Handle a call from a corporate client’s PA regarding a booking for her boss’s very complicated business trip in USA.
1.30pm – 2:30pm Another client on the phone wanting advice on a relaxed vacation destinations.
2:30pm – 3:00pm Call from a student regarding university tours in Europe.
3:00pm – 4:00pm Call with a client regarding a wedding reception booking in Kerala, India.
4:00pm – 6:00 pm Request from a corporate client. Call form a PA to book tickets, hotels and cars for a corporate offsite meeting for a group of 30 people. Research the options, Explain to the PA. Make the bookings.
6:00pm Leave for home

Career Ladder:

Career path or career ladder, i.e. career progression for travel agents. Exact path may change from organization to organization. but below is a typical career ladder.

Career Ladder Image:

TravelAgentCareerLadder

Description For Certifications:

Links to Certifications or Credentials, that can also be identified as Professional Organizations that certify, can potentially help in climbing up the career ladder.

Professional Certifications or Credentials:

Certification Description Career Level Certifying Body
CTA Certified Travel Associate Entry Level The Travel Institute
CTC Certified Travel Counselor Entry Level ACTA
CTM Certified Travel Manager Entry Level/Expert/Professional ACTA

Description For Associations:

Links to Associations, that can also be identified as Professional Organizations that certify, can potentially help in climbing up the career ladder.

Professional Associations or Organizations:

Association Description More Info
TAAI Travel Agents Association of India TAAI
ASTA American Society of Travel Agents ASTA
ECTAA ECTAA is the Group of national travel agents’ and tour operators’ associations within the EU ECTAA
WATA World Association of Travel Agencies WATA

Travel Agent Tools:

Links to a few Tools/Techniques (Also called Career Management Tools or Career Tools) and Methods (Also called Career Method Tools or Techniques) that the professionals in that career path tend to use, like this:

Tool Purpose More info
Travefy Travefy is an online and mobile group travel planner. Users can collaborate on trip details, build a shared itinerary, and collect shared expenses. Travefy
TourCMS TourCMS is a web-based reservation system designed for specialist tour and local activity operators. TourCMS
OTRAMS OTRAMS is a travel management system for travel agencies. OTRAMS

Travel Agent Methods:

Links to a few Methods (Also called Career Method Tools or Techniques) and Tools/Techniques (Also called Career Management Tools or Career Tools) that the professionals in that career path tend to use, like this:

Method Description
1. Develop your own niche Specialize in one area like vacation destinations or wedding events etc.
2. Customize to the individual client Attend to the individual clients like maintaining their profiles that includes the flyer number, airline seating preference, contact information etc.
3. Develop a brand image. Use a consistent brand name, logo and ensure that the image and the service quality is maintained across channels like phone, email, website etc.
4. Be available via multiple channels: Website, phone, email This is a must in new digital era.

Travel Agent Experts:

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