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What Does it Take to Be a Travel Agent?

Example of Travel Agent Job 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.

Daily Life Of a Travel Agent

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

Qualities of a Travel Agent

When polled, Travel Agents say the following skills are most frequently used in their jobs:

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.

Persuasion: Persuading others to change their minds or behavior.

  • Destination Specialist
  • Certified Corporate Travel Executive
  • Corporate Travel Agent
  • Travel Agent
  • Tour Coordinator

Is There Job Demand for Travel Agents?

In the United States, there were 81,700 jobs for Travel Agent in 2016. There is little to no growth in job opportunities for Travel Agent. The BLS estimates 7,800 yearly job openings in this field.

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

The states with the most job growth for Travel Agent are Washington, Alaska, and Maryland. Watch out if you plan on working in Wisconsin, Ohio, or North Dakota. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

How Much Does a Travel Agent Make?

Travel Agents make between $22,370 and $66,080 a year.

Salary Ranges for Travel Agents

Travel Agents who work in District of Columbia, Washington, or Arizona, make the highest salaries.

How much do Travel Agents make in each U.S. state?

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama $45,070
Alaska $42,060
Arizona $48,980
Arkansas $37,580
California $47,460
Colorado $44,750
Connecticut $48,780
Delaware $41,800
District of Columbia $56,790
Florida $41,630
Georgia $35,190
Hawaii $42,170
Idaho $38,280
Illinois $41,100
Indiana $40,640
Iowa $41,330
Kansas $45,940
Kentucky $41,470
Louisiana $38,060
Maine $34,510
Maryland $36,300
Massachusetts $49,920
Michigan $42,530
Minnesota $45,530
Mississippi $34,120
Missouri $40,100
Montana $45,810
Nebraska $41,650
Nevada $56,590
New Hampshire $44,420
New Jersey $49,330
New Mexico $40,970
New York $40,000
North Carolina $40,690
North Dakota $33,600
Ohio $36,250
Oklahoma $36,940
Oregon $38,520
Pennsylvania $42,700
Rhode Island $37,280
South Carolina $33,150
South Dakota $36,140
Tennessee $42,600
Texas $39,670
Utah $43,590
Vermont $44,000
Virginia $44,970
Washington $52,790
West Virginia $35,420
Wisconsin $37,350
Wyoming $47,440

Tools & Technologies Used by Travel Agents

Although they’re not necessarily needed for all jobs, the following technologies are used by many Travel Agents:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Office
  • Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Microsoft Outlook
  • Microsoft Access
  • Data entry software
  • Intuit QuickBooks
  • Travel Agent CMS

How to Become a Travel Agent

Learn what Travel Agent education requirements there are.

Travel Agent Degree Level

How many years of work experience do I need?

Travel Agent Work Experience

Where Travel Agents Work

Travel Agent Sectors

Below are examples of industries where Travel Agents work:

Travel Agent Industries

Similar Careers

Those thinking about becoming a Travel Agent might also be interested in the following careers:

References:

Image Credit: Nick Nijhuis via Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International (CC BY-SA 4.0)

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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