Sunday, 10 February 2013

False myths about being a travel agent

Some people believe being a travel agent is a very glamorous world. But it's not true. It is a very demanding job and you have to be really passionate about it and be qualified. I will be removing myths of being a travel agent.
  • We know all the destinations. There is nothing more exciting for a travel agent than travelling. And there is nothing better than being able to say: I have been there and you shouldn't miss... but unfortunately, it is not always like that. Although we have never being to let's say, Boston, that does not mean we haven't got the tools for suggesting the hotel that best fits your necesities and requests. Experience is all.
  • We get a good salary. Hahahahaha... When I started 9 years ago, I was living in Barcelona and was paid 980€, do your own calculations. With almost disapeared commissions (ie: almost any airlines gives any percentage of a ticket agencies sell), lower fees and internet's competition, salaries are reduced more and more. And if you allow me to say it, there are even less of us left.
  • It's an easy job. No, it's not. Doesn't matter if you work in leisure or business travel. There is a lot of pressure. This is a very demanding job, requires a lot of concentration, dedication and constant training. The stress of waking up at night trying to remember if you issued the ticket for Mr Smith leaving at 7 am tomorrow, is quite usual. For being a travel agent you need vocation.

  • We travel for free. That is one of the biggest lies. When I tell people what I do for a living, they always say: oh, you must get great discounts. Well, not! When we buy a ticket, we have to pay the same amount you would pay. Yes, we do not have to pay the service fee, imagine we had to pay to issue our own ticket! Veterans say that 20-30 years ago you got 2-3 holidays per year for free. Things have changed completely.
  • We get great advantages when travelling. Yes, we get some advantages, I am not going to deny sometimes we get freebies, and I will explain in a new post things I have got for free. But as I was saying in the previous point, advantages are limited.
  • Our friends travel for free. Again, no. If we do not get it, neither our friends do. 
  • We do not care if people says rubbish about us. The worse thing that could happen is that someone accuses you of destroying their vacations. Even though you know you have given 100% of a quality service, nothing avoids that errors could happen or even though you told the client to consider another option, he has not listen to you and went to visit the Norwegian Fjords even though he was after a beach destination.

1 comment:

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