A passion for travel is a must when becoming a home-based travel agent. Not only do you have to be excited about seeing the world and sharing your own travel experiences, but you must be enthusiastic about helping other people achieve their dreams vacations. That passion will propel you through a career as a travel agent. However, in addition to some basic office skills, such as working on a computer, you will need to possess some people skills to be a successful agent.
What Skills Do You Need as a Home-Based Travel Agent?
In addition to passion, there are several skills you need to be a home-based travel agent. But don’t worry, past experience is not required. Chief among the skills to be a travel agent are:
- Friendliness – Travel agencies are considered part of the hospitality industry, along with resorts, hotels, cruise lines, airlines and other segments of travel. In addition to the service provided at these businesses, it’s the warmth toward travelers by employees that keeps people coming back. Travel agents must also be social and outgoing since they work with different people every day.
- Organization – Travel agents deal with many clients at one time, and therefore need a system to keep them, their trips, bookings and needs organized. You don’t want to send the couple excited to visit Paris to Peoria by mistake because you’re not organized.
- Attentiveness – Part of what helps successful travel agents stay organized is their ability to listen carefully. It’s important to understand the kind of experiences clients want, where they want to go and amenities they need. This attentiveness will help you provide personalized service that stands out from the competition.
- Problem Solving – There will be times when a client needs help getting out of a bind – maybe they missed their flight, lost their passport or had their purse or wallet stolen. Travel agents must figure out how to reassure their clients while resolving the predicament and keeping their client safe.