Though online travel sites like Travelocity and Expedia has caused the travel storefronts to suffer. There is still a need for travel agents. Travel agents provide the expertise and flexibility in creating travel arrangements online booking sites cannot provide. Travel agents can also earn discounts on travel to destinations around the world while also generating commissions for their work. You can become a travel agent with low start-up costs depending on your specific goals for being a travel agent.
Purchase a computer that has high-speed Internet and a printer. Your computer equipment can be found at your local hardware store like Best Buy. You need a computer and Internet to search travel deals as well as print out any tickets or other documentation that might be mailed or faxed to your customers. Some travel agents choose to purchase laptops as they can travel to their client's homes or place of business to make travel arrangements.
Choose a specialisation for the type of travel agent you would like to be. For example, if you have an expertise in cruise travel or the Caribbean you can locate travel agencies in your area that also specialise in the same destinations. They may be willing to hire you to either work in the office or from home.
Find a travel agency that offers affiliate programs. There are online travel agencies that will provide short training and your job will be to book travel using their system working with your referrals. Usually affiliate programs do not charge any money to start up but your commissions may be smaller.
Become a travel agent through online travel agencies looking for independent travel agents. There are certain travel agencies that primarily operate online that will allow you to pay approximately £325 or lower to become a travel agent through their company. You are provided with the training, website, and software to book travel and find clientele. Locate these travel agencies by researching forums online.
Register for consistent training through online travel education websites. For example Travel Agent University offers free classes that will train you on multiple destinations and types of travel. Cruise Line International Association also offers classes that are less than £32 which also assist you in getting your CLIA credential, which designates you as a travel professional.
Use free website templates to create your own travel agent website to promote your business and get clients. You will need to purchase a domain name and web hosting if you do not want to use the travel agency you are affiliated with. A domain name can cost between 60p and £9 per year and web hosting can be as little as £1.90 per month.