Do you daydream about earning money from the comfort of your own home, setting your own hours, and being part of an exciting and dynamic field? Then perhaps you should create your own online travel agency. You can become a work at home travel agent for as little as $100.
Once you decide that you want to have a home travel agency, d evelop a business plan outlining what your goals are and budget. The amount of money you make with your own travel agency will depend on how much work, time, and effort you put into it. You will also need to do your research. Read as much as you can about the different home based travel agency options, determine if certification or registration is required in your state and what educational opportunities are available. While there is not a required educational course to become a travel agent per se, if you are not familiar with the business a course may be beneficial to you. When working your budget consider if your state requires registration since that can be expensive and also keep in mind what type of insurance or bonding you may need to protect you from liability.
Determine if you need to work with a host agency or if you will have your own. Some states that require registration (as of this writing Hawaii, California, Nevada, Ohio, Florida and Oregon) or that travel agents be bonded to run a host agency can cause costs to become very high as previously stated. If you do decide to work as an independent contractor with a host agency, be sure that they are established and reputable. If you have decided that a home travel agency is for you, you may want to obtain an IATAN (International Airlines Travel Agent Network) ID card. This is your documentation that you are a credible travel agent. This travel agent ID card will also allow you to work with commercial suppliers.
To become a truly successful home travel agency, find a niche! Decide what type of travel you want to sell, such as cruises or Disney packages. It helps to be familiar with your product. For example, if you have traveled to Europe many times, you would be knowledgeable in planning a vacation there. You will thrive if you focus on a particular area of travel. Remember, you are selling a service and a product.