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Starting a Travel Business: How to Become a Travel Agent from Home

You have a passion for different countries and cultures, and you love nothing better than exploring new places – so why not turn that passion into a business?

There are a huge number of ways you can become a home-based travel agent, and, given the fact that everyone is long overdue a dream trip, you could just be signing up at a boom time.

Working as a home-based travel consultant has many benefits, including the fact that you are saving on expenses such as an office and you need very little else beyond good online access, a phone, a great brand, a website, and the right insurances to ensure your customers are protected.

If that seems like it's for you, then here are some top tips on how to become a travel agent from home.

Travel Consultant or build your own business?

For anyone who has never worked in the travel trade before, deciding to launch a new business can be a fairly daunting prospect.

Many major names in the industry offer the opportunity to become a home-based travel agent on their behalf. They will give you all the necessary training and marketing materials, the kit you need, and it can be a good introduction so you have a complete understanding of how selling travel works.

Another option to consider is to look at some franchising opportunities, where you can sell the products of a particular operator.

It’s worth checking out, which has lots of information about home working and jobs in the industry. But if you’re determined to go it alone and have all the confidence and experience you need, then here you go!

Location, location, location…

Or what we really should have said was ‘destination, destination, destination’. The travel industry is a very competitive industry and has become more so over the years, simply because of highly successful online companies such as Expedia and, which have revolutionised travel.

Competing as a general homed-based travel agent can be tough, so it might be worth considering a specialist area or interest and become known as an expert in that.

You may have spent a huge amount of time in the Far East, for example – in which case, put that knowledge to good use. See if you can offer packages that might tick boxes for people with a particular interest – from bird watching to cooking.

First steps

Like any business, the first step is to put together a business plan. Why do you want a travel business? Have you spotted a gap in the market that you can fill?

It would be worth talking to other people in the industry or even joining a professional body where you can often get helpful advice and information.

You should also look at registering with both ATOL and ABTA as it's important that your customers are protected should something go wrong with their trip. It also gives them the confidence to buy from you, knowing that they will be reimbursed if the worst happens.

Sell yourself

There’s one more very important asset if you want to become a travel agent at home – personality!

You need to be able to build a rapport with your clients and win them over. That way, the chances are they’ll come back to you time and time again.

At the same time, it’s important to have some knowledge about the places you are recommending, so try and travel yourself as much as possible (a hardship, we know).

Many providers do familiarisation visits for travel agents so they can sell a destination with confidence, and you can share your experience and enthusiasm with your customers.

Alternatively, if you have somewhere you really want to visit, then it’s worth contacting airlines/hotels etc and you can often get a special rate as an agent.

Once you’ve considered these number of things, all that’s left that to do is get the ball rolling and send people on their way!


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