Travel Agent

If like working with customers then you might want to consider becoming a travel agent.

The interesting job involves helping customers book their travel plans and ensuring that they have a great experience.

A travel agent arranges trips for individuals and groups. This includes transport, accommodation, a cruise, or tickets for attractions and tours.

Day-to-day Tasks

  • research travel options for customers. This includes using databases to research hotels, flights, trains, cruises, tours and excursion tickets for their customers
  • discussing the arrangements and costs with customers once you have researched options that meet their needs
  • taking payment from the customer
  • help the customer plan for travel essentials like passports, visas and other documents
  • after booking the travel arrangements you will provide the customer with an itinerary and plan of their trip
  • making alternations to travel plans if the customers’ needs change
  • some travel agents make the opportunity to visit specific destinations or travel on certain cruises for research purposes
  • sell travel insurance
  • manage queries and complaints
  • Meet sales targets
  • keep accurate records

Skills required

  • excellent communication and interpersonal skills
  • enthusiasm and a positive attitude
  • polite and friendly
  • strong sales and negotiating skills
  • attention to detail
  • good knowledge of geography
  • patient and able to work under pressure
  • good computer skills
  • good with numbers
  • able to plan an organise your workload
  • fluent in English with more languages being an advantage

Industry qualification

Most travel companies require new employees to complete on the job training programmes. These sessions typically help travel agents become familiar with reservation systems, research strategies and vendor relationships. They can last for a few days or a few weeks, depending on the organisation, the role and the employee's experience level.

There are no set entry requirements, although having a qualification travel and tourism or business management would be helpful. A good general standard of education is expected. Good geographical knowledge will also be helpful.

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