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What is 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.

List of Travel Agent Job Duties

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

What Skills Do You Need to Work as a Travel Agent?

Travel Agents state the following job skills are important in their day-to-day work.

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.

Other Travel Agent Job Titles

  • Certified Travel Counselor
  • Corporate Travel Expert
  • Auto Travel Counselor
  • Travel Consultant
  • Tour Agent

Are There Job Opportunities for Travel Agents?

In the United States, there were 81,700 jobs for Travel Agents in 2016.

Travel Agent jobs are decreasing by a rate of -11.7%. This means the total job opportunities are shrinking. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts a loss of -9,500 jobs for Travel Agents by 2026. Due to new job openings and attrition, there will be an average of 7,800 job openings in this field each year.

Forecasted Number of Jobs for Travel Agents in U.S.

The states with the most job growth for Travel Agents are Washington, Florida, and Maryland.

Watch out if you plan on working in California, Wisconsin, or Pennsylvania. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Average Travel Agent Salary

Travel Agents Make between $22,370 and $66,080 a year. The median salary for this occupation is $38,700.

Salary Ranges for Travel Agents

How much do Travel Agents make in different U.S. states?

Annual Mean Salary by State
State Annual Mean Salary

District of Columbia

$56,790

Nevada

$56,590

Washington

$52,790

Massachusetts

$49,920

New Jersey

$49,330

Arizona

$48,980

Connecticut

$48,780

California

$47,460

Wyoming

$47,440

Kansas

$45,940

Montana

$45,810

Minnesota

$45,530

Alabama

$45,070

Virginia

$44,970

Colorado

$44,750

New Hampshire

$44,420

Vermont

$44,000

Utah

$43,590

Pennsylvania

$42,700

Tennessee

$42,600

Michigan

$42,530

Hawaii

$42,170

Alaska

$42,060

Delaware

$41,800

Nebraska

$41,650

Florida

$41,630

Kentucky

$41,470

Iowa

$41,330

Illinois

$41,100

New Mexico

$40,970

North Carolina

$40,690

Indiana

$40,640

Missouri

$40,100

New York

$40,000

Texas

$39,670

Oregon

$38,520

Idaho

$38,280

Louisiana

$38,060

Arkansas

$37,580

Wisconsin

$37,350

Rhode Island

$37,280

Oklahoma

$36,940

Maryland

$36,300

Ohio

$36,250

South Dakota

$36,140

West Virginia

$35,420

Georgia

$35,190

Maine

$34,510

Mississippi

$34,120

North Dakota

$33,600

South Carolina

$33,150

Tools & Technologies Used by Travel Agents

Below is a list of the types of tools and technologies that Travel Agents may use on a daily basis:

  • Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Sabre Central Command
  • Microsoft Excel
  • Intuit QuickBooks
  • Microsoft Access
  • Data entry software
  • Microsoft Office
  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Outlook

How do I Become a Travel Agent?

What kind of Travel Agent requirements are there?

Travel Agent Degree Level

How many years of work experience do I need?

Travel Agent Work Experience

Where do Travel Agents Work?

Travel Agent Sectors

Other Jobs You May be Interested In

Those interested in being a Travel Agent may also be interested in:

  • Bill and Account Collectors
  • Interpreters and Translators

References

Bureau of Labor Statistics

College Factual

O*NET Online

Image Credit: Via Wikimedia Commons

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