A travel agency is a private retailer of travel and accommodations. The agency represents various suppliers and offers different traveling packages for their customers. As a travel agent, you are responsible for identifying the best travel packages for your customers. To get started in this field, you must complete entry-level education in travel and tourism. Once you have obtained this qualification, you can apply for a job at a travel agency. Below you can find the various types of travel agencies.
Function of a travel agency
A travel agency is a business that arranges various types of travel packages. This includes hotel reservations, conference hall bookings, and restaurant and bar reservations. The travel agency is also responsible for settling payments in bulk for various services. It is one of the most important functions of a travel agency. Its primary revenue stream comes from the commissions it receives from airlines. It is crucial for an agency to maintain a good relationship with suppliers.
Types of travel agencies
There are two main types of travel agencies: wholesale and retail. Wholesale travel agencies purchase travel products in bulk from vendors and sell them to retail travel agencies. Wholesale travel agencies tend to offer fewer tour programmes and are less likely to offer ground services. On the other hand, retail travel agencies sell individual components of a travel product. They typically sell to both retail and wholesale agencies, and often work for a commission. These two types of travel agencies often have similar business practices, but the primary difference lies in their revenue source.
Entry-level education requirements for a travel agent
To become a travel agent, you must earn a certificate from a training school. There are two main types of training programs: host agency-provided and self-paced. Host agency education usually lasts 8 to 16 weeks, and a certificate is earned upon completion. This training focuses on hands-on skills, such as airport gate procedures and airline codes, as well as computer reservation systems.
Customer service duties of a travel agent
The customer service duties of a travel agent include handling customer inquiries. Having the necessary training and knowledge of the industry helps in making a successful career in this field. Most travel agents start off in a customer service position and then move up through the ranks, eventually becoming tour operators, group sales coordinators, or even owning their own business. Some agents specialize in one type of travel, such as air travel, cruises, or insurance.
Business structure of a travel agency
Before setting up a travel agency, you should consider its business structure. LLCs are the most common business structures. They are relatively easy to create and maintain, and they protect the owner’s personal assets. An LLC is an excellent choice for starting a travel agency, and they are easy to expand. An S-Corp, on the other hand, is a more complex business structure. S-Corps are typically the largest and most complex types of businesses.