Travel agents enjoy both the adventure of a travel career and the stability of an office career. They have the opportunity to go on familiarization "fam" trips, where they are paid to learn about travel destinations!
The Travel Academy's travel agent training program teaches you how to become a travel agent in many different exciting areas. The Travel Academy is 1 of only 11 ASTA (American Society of Travel Agents)-endorsed brick-and-mortar travel agent schools in the whole country! Our course includes extensive hands-on training on the SABRE computer reservation system. SABRE is used around the globe at airlines and travel agencies for booking airfare, car rental, hotels and more. In addition to our SABRE training, our travel and tourism course encompasses:
- The air transportation industry
- Airports, airfares and airline tickets
- Airport codes and airline terminology
- The hospitality industry
- The travel agency industry
- The tour industry
- Car rentals and rail travel including Amtrak and the European rail system
- Sales, marketing, and customer service
- International travel information
The Travel Academy's daily hands-on training with SABRE (a software program) will give students practice using the same tools used by airlines and travel agencies around the world to book airline tickets, car rentals, hotels, and more. It allows you to access fares and availability for all scheduled airlines. It also allows you to read the airline rules of the least expensive airfare so you can offer clients the lowest possible price as quickly as possible.
Another major subject covered in our travel agent training is geography- both United States and international. Good travel agents should know popular destinations around the world so that they can better serve their clients.
Some employment possibilities after graduating from The Travel Academy include:
Leisure/Vacation Agent - These agents work within a travel agency and handle the leisure clientele who want to book packages, cruises, airfare, car rentals, rail, or hotel accommodations for clients going on vacation. There are some travel agencies that allow agents to work from home. They have offices set up in their homes where calls from the agency are routed. Agents work 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM, for instance- the same as agency hours.
Corporate Agent - A corporate agent works in a faster paced environment booking air reservations, car rentals, and accommodations for the business traveler. You may be working in an agency where you would be assigned to certain accounts or there are corporate travel agencies that may allow you to work from home during their normal business hours.
International Agent - There are International Travel Agents (Consultants), for both business and leisure travelers; they make travel arrangements: airline, car, hotel, cruises, and tours for people to travel outside of the United States. Unless you have traveled extensively abroad, you will most likely start out making domestic travel arrangements (travel within the U.S.), then progress to an International Travel Agent (Consultant).
International travel agents are required to understand the rules and regulations, and in many cases, apply and process Passports and Visas.
Home-Based Agent - (as mentioned above)
Owning your own business under a “host” agency - You can start your own travel business by working under a “host” agency immediately out of travel school if you so desire. It is your own business, but you work under the umbrella of the host agency. The host has gone through all the leg work and expense of setting up and starting a travel agency, including getting ARC approval for issuing airline tickets. You decide your own business hours, decide on a name for your company, and need to market your company to find clients. The host agency gives you support by helping you with a website, business cards, and even marketing ideas. They may also offer additional training, seminars, and other training opportunities throughout the year. Airline tickets are run through their office, and you will invoice all bookings through their accounting system. There may be a start-up fee with the host agency along with other annual fees. Every company is a little different.