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As an independent travel agent, you will have the ability to market your services to whatever demographic you feel most comfortable with. However, there is no question that offering travel booking services to a large company can be a smart way to earn bigger commissions in less time. Discover how you can break into this part of the travel booking industry, how a host agency may be able to help and why booking for corporations can be so lucrative.
Benefits of Booking Travel for Businesses
Every time that you book a client on a cruise to Hawaii, an international flight or a vacation package, you will earn a commission on the total cost of the travel purchase. These bookings can add up quickly for an impressive salary, and many travel agents love the flexibility that this kind of business offers to them.
To increase your commission, there are two major options: book more expensive trips, or book a higher quantity of trips. The advantage of working with a business to book their travel is that you can accomplish both objectives at the same time.
Business executives typically travel more than the average person, and they are more likely to attend conferences, conventions and client meetings via first-class flights and expect luxury hotel suites.
Plus, booking all of the travel for a large company means that you can expect a steady stream of travel booking for a number of employees throughout the year, not just around Christmas and summer when most individuals travel for pleasure.
Finally, those business executives who enjoy the travel you book for them in a work capacity might end up using you for their own family vacations, group trips or reunions, which can drum up additional commission.
Why Businesses Appreciate Their Independent Travel Agents
Although the relationship between a large corporation and a travel agent is certainly beneficial to the agent, it is also advantageous to the corporation. Rather than working with a variety of different agents at a big travel firm, they can remain in contact with the same independent agent each time.
As the “go-to” travel agent, you will be able to quickly address any issues or problems that arise for travelers, and you can quickly check travel information to give to accounting or human resources departments should it be needed.
Large corporations definitely appreciate having a single person to contact rather than dealing with online booking, which may not be secure enough, or speaking on the phone with an employee of a big travel booking firm, which might not be private enough for their needs.
How to Appeal to Business Travelers and Corporations
Since many travel agents want to count large companies as their clients, the right marketing is vital. Pay-per-click advertisements can be effective, but these ads should focus on upscale travel because of your desired clientele.
Participating in social media, direct mail marketing to large companies in your area and even attending a trade show or convention might be a tactic that proves successful for your independent travel career.
To become a successful independent travel agent, you may want to consider the benefits of aligning yourself with a host agency. Agencies like Travel Planners International, for example, can give you the tools, support and resources you need to expand your travel agent business, have the right contacts and potentially increase your commissions.