What Does A Travel Agent Do (including Their Typical Day at Work)

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Salary, Job Description, How To Become One, and Quiz

Travel Agents

Travel Agents plan and sell transportation and accommodations for 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.

Salary
$46650
Becoming One
Medium
Education
Associate's degree
Job Satisfaction
Job Growth

Personality
Interest Match





Find a job you love and you will never work a day in your life.Confucius

What they do

Travel Agents plan and sell transportation and accommodations for 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.

  • Collect payment for transportation and accommodations from customers.
  • Plan, describe, arrange, and sell itinerary tour packages and promotional travel incentives offered by various travel carriers.
  • Converse with customer to determine destination, mode of transportation, travel dates, financial considerations, and accommodations required.
  • Compute the cost of travel and accommodations, using calculator, computer, carrier tariff books, and hotel rate books, or quote package tour’s costs.

Typical day

On a daily basis, Travel Agents converse with customers to determine destination, mode of transportation, travel dates, financial considerations, and accommodations required. They record and maintain information on clients, vendors, and travel packages.

A typical day for a Travel Agent will also include:

  • Book transportation and hotel reservations, using a computer terminal or telephone.
  • Compute the cost of travel and accommodations, using calculator, computer, carrier tariff books, and hotel rate books, or quote package tour’s costs.
  • Collect payment for transportation and accommodations from customers.
  • Print or request transportation carrier tickets, using computer printer system or system link to travel carrier.
  • Plan, describe, arrange, and sell itinerary tour packages and promotional travel incentives offered by various travel carriers.

Other responsibilities

Besides their typical day, Travel Agents also provide customers with brochures and publications containing travel information, such as local customs, points of interest, or foreign country regulations. They may also print or request transportation carrier tickets, using a computer printer system or system link to the travel carrier.

On a weekly to monthly basis, Travel Agents converse with customers to determine destination, mode of transportation, travel dates, financial considerations, and accommodations required. They might also collect payment for transportation and accommodations from customers.

In addition, they record and maintain information on clients, vendors, and travel packages.

Although specific duties may vary, many of them compute the cost of travel and accommodations, using a calculator, computer, carrier tariff books, and hotel rate books, or quote package tour costs.

To some Travel Agents, it is also their responsibility to plan, describe, arrange, and sell itinerary tour packages and promotional travel incentives offered by various travel carriers.

Featured Schools


What is the job like

Job satisfaction

Average

Is this job meaningful

Low

65% said they were satisfied with their job and 44% said they found their job meaningful.


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Erica James Travel

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One of the largest travel agencies in Costa Rica

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The Vacationeer

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Costa Rica Vacations

My typical day begins with checking my emails. 90 percent of our client’s inquiries about trips and packages online. Mostly, someone will google us, check out our website and then fill out a form on our site, or just email us regarding a package they see or an idea of a trip they have in … Read More


My Travel Tripod

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Pros

Suitable for people who like to start and carry out projects.

Suitable for people who value relationships between co-workers and customers and want to work in a friendly non-competitive environment.

This career is perfect for people who love to work indoors.

It is not too difficult to get into this career. Previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is required for this career.

Cons

Not suitable for people who like to solve problems mentally.

Salary is below average.

Demand for this career is declining.

How much do they make

Average salary

$46650 per year

Average hourly wage

$22 per hour

Entry-level Travel Agents with little to no experience can expect to make anywhere between $25,230 to $32,010 per year or $12 to $15 per hour.

Salary by experience Annual Hourly
Highest (Top 10%) $73,360 $35
Senior (Top 25%) $56,520 $27
Median $42,350 $20
Junior (Bottom 25%) $32,010 $15
No experience (Bottom 10%) $25,230 $12

This table shows the top 10 highest paying industries for Travel Agents based on their average annual salary.

Salary by industry Annual Hourly
Agencies, Brokerages, and Other Insurance Related Activities $64540 $31.03
Credit Intermediation and Related Activities $57780 $27.78
Management, Scientific, and Technical Consulting Services $56200 $27.02
Insurance Carriers $54400 $26.16
Scientific Research and Development Services $52420 $25.20
Management of Companies and Enterprises $50460 $24.26
Nonscheduled Air Transportation $49890 $23.99
Charter Bus Industry $47820 $22.99
Other Support Services $47150 $22.67
Travel Arrangement and Reservation Services $46590 $22.40

View more salary by industries here.

Where can they work

Where can Travel Agents work? Here is a table showing the top 10 largest employers of Travel Agents including the average salary in that industry.

Employers Total Employed Annual Salary Hourly Wages
Travel Arrangement and Reservation Services 46810 $46590 $22.40
Nondepository Credit Intermediation 2930 $46430 $22.32
Management of Companies and Enterprises 1480 $50460 $24.26
Credit Intermediation and Related Activities 530 $57780 $27.78
Traveler Accommodation 250 $32680 $15.71
Management, Scientific, and Technical Consulting Services 230 $56200 $27.02
Insurance Carriers 220 $54400 $26.16
Other Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services 130 $35840 $17.23
Other Support Services 80 $47150 $22.67
Employment Services 70 $45920 $22.07

What is the work day like

Working hours

Less than 40 hours
32%

40 hours
20%

More than 40 hours
48%

Working schedule

85%

15%

0%

Email

How often do you use email in this job?

Once a week
2%

Every day
98%

Telephone

How often do you have telephone conversations in this job?

Once a week
0%

Every day
100%

Group discussions

How often do you have group discussions in this job?

Once a week
32%

Every day
51%

Public speaking

How often does this job require you to do public speaking?

Never
54%

Once a year
39%

Once a month
8%

Once a week
0%

Every day
0%

Level of competition

How much competitive pressure is in this job?

Not competitive at all
3%

Slightly competitive
10%

Moderately competitive
31%

Highly competitive
8%

Extremely competitive
48%

What is the work environment like

Office-style environment

Indoors in an environmentally controlled condition

Never
43%

Once a year or more
0%

Once a month or more
0%

Once a week or more
14%

Every day
43%

Warehouse-style environment

Indoors in a non-controlled environmental condition such as a warehouse

Never
94%

Once a year or more
6%

Once a month or more
0%

Once a week or more
0%

Every day
0%

Outdoors

Outdoors exposed to all weather conditions

Never
98%

Once a year or more
1%

Once a month or more
0%

Once a week or more
2%

Every day
0%

Outdoors – Under Cover

Outdoors but under cover (e.g. structure with roof but no walls)

Never
100%

Once a year or more
1%

Once a month or more
0%

Once a week or more
0%

Every day
0%

How to become one

Difficulty to become one

Medium
You will need previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience. Most careers in this difficulty category require training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an Associate’s degree, and one or two years of on-the-job training. Similar careers include Travel Agents, Agricultural Technicians, Court Reports, and Medical Assistants.

Required level of education

What level of education do you need to perform the job?

Less than a High School Diploma
0%

High School Diploma or equivalent
31%

Post-Secondary Certificate
11%

Some College Courses
6%

Associate’s Degree or similar
37%

Bachelor’s Degree
14%

Post-Baccalaureate Certificate
0%

Master’s Degree
0%

Post-Master’s Certificate
0%

First Professional Degree
0%

Doctoral Degree
0%

Post-Doctoral Training
0%

Relevant majors

Selling Skills and Sales Operations

A program that prepares individuals to possess the skills associated with direct promotion of products and services to potential customers and to function as independent sales representatives and managers. Includes instruction in consumer psychology, image projection, public speaking and interpersonal communications, sales organization and operations, customer relations, professional standards and ethics, and applicable technical skills.

Tourism and Travel Services Marketing Operations

A program that prepares individuals to provide direct retail services to hotel and motel clients and customers in a variety of settings. Includes instruction in the principles of hotel/motel operations, customer sales and assistance operations and techniques, telephone operations, and basic office management.

Relevant work experience

How much related work experience do you need to get hired for the job?

None
8%

1 month
6%

1 to 3 months
0%

3 to 6 months
14%

6 months to 1 year
4%

1 to 2 years
47%

2 to 4 years
5%

4 to 6 years
2%

6 to 8 years
0%

8 to 10 years
14%

Over 10 years
0%

On The Job Training

How much on the job training do you need to perform the job?

None or short demonstration
0%

1 month
16%

1 to 3 months
31%

3 to 6 months
32%

6 months to 1 year
19%

1 to 2 years
3%

2 to 4 years
0%

4 to 10 years
0%

Over 10 years
0%

Should you become one

Best personality type for this career

The Leader

People with this personality likes to start and work on projects. They also like leading people and making many decisions.

The Builder
33%

People with The Builder personality type likes practical and hands-on work. They prefer working with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery.


The Thinker
19%

People with The Thinker personality likes to work with ideas that require an extensive amount of thinking. They prefer work that requires them to solve problems mentally.


The Artist
38%

People with The Artist personality likes to work with designs and patterns. They prefer activities that require self-expression and prefer work that can be done without following a clear set of rules.


The Helper
52%

People with The Helper personality type likes to work with people and in teams. They prefer work that allows them to build relationships with others.


The Leader
100%

People with The Leader personality likes to start and work on projects. They also like leading people and making many decisions.


The Organizer
81%

People with The Organizer personality type likes to follow set procedures and routines. They prefer working with data and details more than with ideas.


You can read more about these career personality types here.

People who are suitable for this job tend to like starting up and carrying out projects. They like leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes they require risk-taking and often deal with business.

They also like following set procedures and routines. They like working with data and details more than with ideas.

Take this quiz to see if this is the right career for you.

Work Values

Which values are the most important to a person’s satisfaction for this job?

Achievement
48%

You are someone who is results oriented. You prefer work that allows you to utilize your skills and abilities while at the same time giving you a sense of accomplishment.

Working Conditions
45%

You are someone who values job security, steady employment, and good working conditions. You also prefer work that keeps you busy all the time with something different to do every day.

Recognition
48%

You are someone who values job advancement and leadership roles. You prefer work that receives recognition for the work you do and jobs that are looked up to by others in the company and your community.

Relationships
67%

You are someone who likes to provide a service to others. You prefer a work environment where you can work with your co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment.

Support
43%

You are someone who values a company that stands behind their employees. You prefer a work environment where everyone is treated fairly and is being supported by the company.

Independence
48%

You are someone who likes to work on your own and make your own decisions. You prefer work that requires little supervision and are allowed to try out your own ideas.

FAQ


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