One business that is often talked about and that could be a very lucrative business that you might like to consider is the travel agency business.
It is a business which you can choose to either operate from home or you could go down the route of setting up a full fledged travel agency office.
Whatever the option you go for most of travel arrangements will be made mainly online.
What Is A Travel Agency Business?
A travel agency business is one that provides certain services which includes:
- acquisition of airline tickets,
- making resort and hotel reservations,
- generating schedule for cruise or tour packages and
- offering information concerning certain travel destinations.
A travel agency business is one of the easiest businesses you can start, even if you are new to the travel industry.
It is a business that often only needs a bit of traing to start with and you dont need a lot of cash to start up a travel agency business.
There have been cases of people that have even been able to start their travel agency businesses for less than $500.
It is a very lucrative market as there is always someone looking to book a hotel, taking a cruise, or jet off for an impromptu vacation.
The travel industry is one industry that continues to enjoy full-bodied activities regardless of challenges that are enough to make other businesses fail.
This is due to the fact that people will always want or have to go places, whether it’s to a celebration or to business meeting, conference or to spend the holidays with family. It therefore pays to start a travel agency business.
You can run a travel agency business from home or an office space. It is advisable that you start working from home after which you get can get an office space as your business expands.
DETERMINE WHAT TYPE OF TRAVEL AGENCY BUSINESS YOU WOULD LIKE TO RUN
It is important that you decide if you want to run an independent travel agency or own a franchise of an established travel agency or you want to be an independent travel consultant.
Running an already established travel agency (franchise) gives you the ample opportunity to build a business on an already successful brand though you will be limited only certain services which the brand provides.
Starting your own agency permits you to trade in a larger variety of travel services while you keep all the proceeds you make from each sale.
Start-up costs tend to be higher if purchasing a franchise or starting your own travel agency with a business space because you will need to invest in equipments needed to run your organization.
Establish the types of travel services you will offer to your prospective clients.
Travel services to consider consist of
- cruise packages,
- hotel and resort reservations,
- transportation arrangements (air, train, boat, and car), and
- focused tour packages such as eco-tours or city-based tours.
You could specialize exclusively in senior travel, family travel, corporate travel or academic travel to set your business apart from other travel agencies.
You could mix some of these services or specialize in a particular one depending on your interest or capacity but it is imperative to note that there is need for you to carve a niche for your business.
YOU CAN RUN YOUR TRAVEL AGENCY BUSINESS FROM HOME – QUICK GUIDE
WHAT YOU WILL NEED TO START YOUR TRAVEL AGENCY BUSINESS
Start-up costs needed for a travel agency business if you decided to run from home is usually very minimal.
- You will only need to finance a phone, computer and software, Internet service and marketing materials needed to run the business. You can start building up your client base from among friends and family so it isn’t exactly complicated for you to start.
- You will also need to get an International Air and Transport Association (IATA) number, which you will need to book flights with airlines. You can get an IATA number by becoming a member of the International Airlines Travel Agent Network (IATAN).
- Working from home will however require you to create a space in your home that allows you to work at ease at your computer and also providing ample storage space for your computer, other equipment, marketing materials and files.
- If you have however decided to get an office space for your travel agency, it is essential that you choose a busy retail arena with adequate parking space. Your proposed space must be big enough for you to meet with clients and also house your computer, other necessary equipments, furniture and marketing materials.
- To start off a travel agent business, it will be of tremendous help to your business if you have a working knowledge of travel agent software, customer service experience and experience in travelling to different parts of the world. You can do this by first taking up a job at a travel agency or attending trainings related to travel agency as this will help you adjust rapidly when you start your own business.
- Register your business legally and legitimately
- Give your business a good name that is suitable for a travel agency and will be easy for clients to remember
- Get all necessary licences and permits needed to run your business
- Ensure you do a special research on all that is need to start a travel agency business in your area.
- Lastly you will need a business plan to precisely spell out the objectives and focus of your travel agency business. This is crucial as a business plan will give you more insight into all you need to make your business successful.
MARKETING YOUR BUSINESS
Advertising your business is important for people to know what your business is all about. Since most travel related matters are done on the internet, it is advisable for you to create a website for your business.
You website must include detailed description of what travel services you offer, an online booking option and how you can be contacted.
Invest in computer software programs that process client requests, booking and payment from your website.
Subsequently you should include testimonials of pleased clients on your website.
Ensure your website is often up to date by providing appealing contents that will be useful for clients when planning a vacation or travelling and keep them loyal.
Generate marketing resources, such as business cards, brochures and flyers to promote your travel agency.
Put together a client list that comprises of travel preferences, email addresses and past travel destinations.
Send email updates of travel specials, events or other travel information that interest your clients as this will encourage sales
Travel Agency Business Resources