With dedication and an entrepreneurial mindset, you can learn how to start a travel agency from home. Through top-notch support, unmatched resources and powerful brand equity, the Dream Vacations home-based travel franchise opportunity is the BEST way to become a “travelpreneur.”
If you have a passion for travel and a desire to connect customers with their ideal vacation, this could be an excellent travel agent business opportunity for you. As a Dream Vacations Franchise Owner, you’ll be able to work on your own schedule – from anywhere in the world with an internet connection – and enjoy the benefits of owning your own travel agency. Want to learn more? Here are some of the steps towards starting a travel agency from home:
1. Conduct Research
You might have an idea of what your goals as a business owner will be, and it’s important to conduct research to determine your plan to market your agency and target the right customers.
Some key questions to consider are:
How can I best access all the tools I need?
What is my target market?
What is my value proposition?
As part of the Dream Vacations franchise family, you’ll be paired with a Business Development Manager who will be there to assist you as you determine the path you want your business to take.
2. Develop Your Focus
As you develop your business, determine what your value proposition is going to be. Based upon your research, look to understand who your typical customer will be (geographical location, income, age, interests and other demographic factors) to help you understand whom you will be targeting.
Many Dream Vacations travel advisors focus on a specific niche or travel style. Some franchise owners are experts in cruise vacations or all-inclusive resorts, or they specialize in groups with unique interests (“affinity groups”). Others may aim primarily at luxury travel or family travel. With Dream Vacations, you’ll access a library of more than 1,500 training courses, as well as specialized marketing resources, to allow you to target any audience that fits your business.
3. Create a Business Plan
Your business plan is the foundation of your agency. You can use it as a roadmap for how to structure, run and grow your business. What’s most important in your plan is to meet your needs and address how your business is going to function.
Executive Summary – What is your business and how can it be successful? Include a mission statement, details about your service and high-level information about your company.
Organization and Management – Who is going to run your company and what will it look like?
Service – Describe the services you’ll offer. Explain in detail how your business will benefit your customers.
Marketing and Sales – How are you going to attract and retain customers? Describe in detail how a sale will happen as well as your complete marketing and sales strategies.
Financial Projections – Provide a prospective financial outlook for the next five years.
Your Dream Vacations Business Development Manager will help you turn your business plan into a course of action for your franchise.
4. Acquire Funding
Dream Vacations has been ranked one of the top low-cost franchises. With an initial franchise cost of $10,500, you can get started for as little as $3,500 down with discounts available for U.S. veterans and military spouses, community heroes, existing travel professionals and more. In the process of becoming a Dream Vacations Franchise Oner, your specific pricing will be explained.
What makes the Dream Vacations opportunity so valuable is that with your initial investment, you’ll instantly get access to a strong brand name, unmatched support, powerful marketing resources and state-of-the-art technology.
5. Determine Financial and Legal Setup Options
Next, you’ll determine how you want your business to be set up; many Dream Vacations Franchise Owners choose to operate as an LLC (limited liability company). With a LLC, there is a degree of separation between your personal assets and your business’ assets. You’ll also need to set up a business banking account. As a Dream Vacations Franchise Owner, you’ll be walked through the steps needed to understand the legal implications of beginning a business.
6. Launch Your Travel Agency
Once you’ve learned how to start a travel agency from home, and once you’ve joined the Dream Vacations community, you’ll take part in a weeklong intensive training course where you will be shown the key pillars to successfully operating your home-based travel franchise.
After initial training, you’ll work with your Business Development Manager to determine how you want to “ramp up” the operation of your business. You’ll begin connecting with clients and continue doing research to better understand travel products – so you can provide the best possible experience!
7. Market Your Travel Agency
Now is the time to connect with customers and demonstrate how you can provide the best possible value for their vacation. As a Dream Vacations franchisee, you’ll have the benefit of a powerful, highly recognizable brand name that makes it clear to customers that you sell all kinds of vacation experiences. Plus, you’ll have access to marketing tools that cover every type of communication channel and subject matter:
Traditional marketing can be helpful for any business, relying upon strategies like direct mail (postcards, brochures, letters, fliers), trade shows, print advertising (magazines, newspapers, coupon books, billboards), referrals and in-person events.
When you’re trying to pick which form of travel agency marketing you should use, consider what the return on your investment (ROI) will be. A campaign that returns $2 per $1 spent is more advantageous than one that returns $1.50 per $1 spent.
With Dream Vacations, you’ll have access to an award-winning program that help you generate leads and create brand awareness. Also, you will always have an assortment of editable and downloadable ads content that can be used to market your business.
In today’s world, digital marketing is just as critical as traditional marketing. Social media pages, like Instagram, Facebook and YouTube, are some of the key methods for clients to connect with travel experiences.
As a Dream Vacations Franchise Owner, you can communicate your business’ offerings to customers through several methods, including:
Stunning emails automatically sent weekly to your database.
A library of over 160 videos, professionally produced to help you sell a variety of destinations and travel experiences.
Auto-social program – social media content designed by the Dream Vacations marketing team and automatically posted to your channels.
Dream Vacations provides the training and tools you need to reach your clients in the most lucrative ways.
8. Get to Work
As you start to get new customers and build your client base, you’ll find what decisions work for your business and which to shy away from. As a Dream Vacations Franchisee, if you put in the dedication needed to succeed and strive to offer customers the best experience, we’ll provide the support and resources your business needs to thrive! Want to learn more about starting a travel agency from home as a Dream Vacations Franchise Owner? Give us a call at 800-892-3928 or watch our informational webinar today.
Answer: The overall initial cost is $10,500, and you can get started for as little as $3,500 down. There are significant discounts available for U.S. veterans, active-duty spouses, first responders, community heroes, medical professionals, teachers and experienced travel professionals, which can significantly reduce this cost.
Question 2: How do travel agencies make money?
Answer: Travel agencies make money through commissions. When an agent books a trip, a percentage of the value of the trip is sent to the agent by the supplier (cruise line, resort chain, tour operator, etc.) The booking cost is the same (or less) than booking directly through the supplier, and the commission comes from the supplier, rather than the customer. Travel agents can also earn commission selling ancillary services and products, such as travel insurance.
Answer: The simple answer is yes! As a travel agent, you’ll have the opportunity to access free and deeply discounted travel experiences, such as familiarization trips, or “FAM trips”. These are designed to allow you to explore a variety of destinations and travel products, so you can provide expertise to your clients. Plus, you can join our Dream Vacations network in travel opportunities like our annual National Conference, a weeklong event held onboard some of the industry’s newest cruise ships. Now that you’ve learned more about how to start a travel agency from home, it’s time to discover your incredible opportunity with Dream Vacations! Register for our informational webinar today!