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What Does it Take to Be a Travel Agent?

Travel Agent Definition Plan and sell transportation and accommodations for travel agency customers. Determine destination, modes of transportation, travel dates, costs, and accommodations required. May also describe, plan, and arrange itineraries and sell tour packages. May assist in resolving clients’ travel problems.

Daily Life Of a Travel Agent

  • Record and maintain information on clients, vendors, and travel packages.
  • Plan, describe, arrange, and sell itinerary tour packages and promotional travel incentives offered by various travel carriers.
  • Provide customer with brochures and publications containing travel information, such as local customs, points of interest, or foreign country regulations.
  • Converse with customer to determine destination, mode of transportation, travel dates, financial considerations, and accommodations required.
  • Collect payment for transportation and accommodations from customer.
  • Book transportation and hotel reservations, using computer terminal or telephone.

Travel Agent Required Skills

These are the skills Travel Agents say are the most useful in their careers:

Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Service Orientation: Actively looking for ways to help people.

Reading Comprehension: Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Social Perceptiveness: Being aware of others’ reactions and understanding why they react as they do.

Persuasion: Persuading others to change their minds or behavior.

Types of Travel Agent

  • Corporate Travel Expert
  • Travel Coordinator
  • Tour Coordinator
  • Travel Consultant
  • Beach Expert

Is There Job Demand for Travel Agents?

There were about 81,700 jobs for Travel Agent in 2016 (in the United States). There is little to no growth in job opportunities for Travel Agent. There will be an estimated 7,800 positions for Travel Agent per year.

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The states with the most job growth for Travel Agent are Washington, Alaska, and Maryland. Watch out if you plan on working in Wisconsin, Ohio, or North Dakota. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Travel Agent Average Salary

The salary for Travel Agents ranges between about $22,370 and $66,080 a year.

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Travel Agents who work in District of Columbia, Washington, or Arizona, make the highest salaries.

Below is a list of the median annual salaries for Travel Agents in different U.S. states.

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama $45,070
Alaska $42,060
Arizona $48,980
Arkansas $37,580
California $47,460
Colorado $44,750
Connecticut $48,780
Delaware $41,800
District of Columbia $56,790
Florida $41,630
Georgia $35,190
Hawaii $42,170
Idaho $38,280
Illinois $41,100
Indiana $40,640
Iowa $41,330
Kansas $45,940
Kentucky $41,470
Louisiana $38,060
Maine $34,510
Maryland $36,300
Massachusetts $49,920
Michigan $42,530
Minnesota $45,530
Mississippi $34,120
Missouri $40,100
Montana $45,810
Nebraska $41,650
Nevada $56,590
New Hampshire $44,420
New Jersey $49,330
New Mexico $40,970
New York $40,000
North Carolina $40,690
North Dakota $33,600
Ohio $36,250
Oklahoma $36,940
Oregon $38,520
Pennsylvania $42,700
Rhode Island $37,280
South Carolina $33,150
South Dakota $36,140
Tennessee $42,600
Texas $39,670
Utah $43,590
Vermont $44,000
Virginia $44,970
Washington $52,790
West Virginia $35,420
Wisconsin $37,350
Wyoming $47,440

What Tools & Technology do Travel Agents Use?

Although they’re not necessarily needed for all jobs, the following technologies are used by many Travel Agents:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Office
  • Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Microsoft Outlook
  • Microsoft Access
  • Data entry software
  • Intuit QuickBooks
  • Travel Agent CMS

How to Become a Travel Agent

Education needed to be a Travel Agent:

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How many years of work experience do I need?

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Where Travel Agents Work

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Below are examples of industries where Travel Agents work:

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Similar Careers

Those thinking about becoming a Travel Agent might also be interested in the following careers:

References:

Image Credit: Nick Nijhuis via Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International (CC BY-SA 4.0)

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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