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Old 05-16-2012, 12:02 PM   #16
anonymousegirl
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I would think that it would be hard to be a part-time travel agent. This job is 24/7 when you have clients traveling. Of course, being an independant contractor means you can pick and choose your clients and when you work, but once you have the clients, you need to service them on their time frame (or Disney's) rather than yours.

I may go home at 5:30 but I am not "off duty". I need to check my email regularly and be prepared to handle whatever comes up--be it a quick question, or an airline snafu.

We have an agent here that works from home from 6am to 10am, then comes into the office, then leaves at 530pm and is still available to her corporate clients until 11pm or so. Of course, she charges a pretty penny for this kind of service.

I think you are smart to do some research on this. Talk with some local agencies and maybe see if they need a temp to help around the office so you can get a first hand look at what is actually involved. You could even see about a non-paid internship perhaps. People rarely say no to free help!
Good luck!
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Old 05-16-2012, 07:19 PM   #17
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Just a word of caution. My daughter was approached by a recognized Disney Travel company (not dreams) Her husband is in the military and therefore they have contact with many young families with military discounts etc.
My daughter was very interested!
She had to put out a tidy sum of cash to get her "Mickey credintials" (my term not theirs)
Made and paid for her own cards, etc....new computer because you can't use MAC.....you get the picture.
And guess what the outcome was......all the "promises" were bogus, the little cash she made didn't come close to offsetting her expenses.....and to top it off the Major Firm has started emailing her clients.......and suggesting someone else.......
Just be careful
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Old 05-21-2012, 07:22 AM   #18
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If you're with a reputable company, wouldn't they get the clients for you? The other reasons might stop you but I'm not sure that one should but I don't know.
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Old 05-25-2012, 12:02 PM   #19
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No one is out there getting clients for you, especially if you are an independent contractor. The whole point of the job is bringing in new clients and generating sales. Sure, the really big agencies with long advertising arms generate sales leads that get distributed to agents. However, that is not where most of your business would come from.
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Old 05-30-2012, 08:59 AM   #20
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I just got a position as a Disney authorized Travel agent. It was not easy but I know the end result will be easy. I start the Disney school next week. I work for a travel company on the east coast. they do not supply leads - most don't. A lot is word of mouth by friends. but ANY decent company will also offer you the chance to not only book Disney but other travel as well. I looked at lots of companies and many wanted fees upfront for things that you should not be charged for. one company wanted 350.00 to hook me up with the disney online class but if they are authorized disney planners it is free to them from what I was told. Another one insisted I have my house rewired to accommodate an extra fax, phone line, and computer for me to use exclusively.

It is a matter of looking and finding a good fit. If you want more info let me know.

Cathy
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Old 05-30-2012, 09:13 PM   #21
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I am interested in becoming an agent too. I know there is a lot for me to learn before I can apply for this.
I hope one day I can become a travel agent to help others.
I know it is cliche, but I love talking Disney and planning vacations (like everyone else).
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Old 05-31-2012, 02:25 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pigletforever View Post
I just got a position as a Disney authorized Travel agent. It was not easy but I know the end result will be easy. I start the Disney school next week. I work for a travel company on the east coast. they do not supply leads - most don't. A lot is word of mouth by friends. but ANY decent company will also offer you the chance to not only book Disney but other travel as well. I looked at lots of companies and many wanted fees upfront for things that you should not be charged for. one company wanted 350.00 to hook me up with the disney online class but if they are authorized disney planners it is free to them from what I was told. Another one insisted I have my house rewired to accommodate an extra fax, phone line, and computer for me to use exclusively.

It is a matter of looking and finding a good fit. If you want more info let me know.

Cathy
congrats on your new position! I just wanted to chime in here and second what Cathy said and also what Kevin said. Number one, you shouldn't have to pay any money out of your pocket to start working. I'm a TA with a Disney focused online travel agency and work mainly booking trips for family and friends. I didn't have to re-wire my house or pay any money. I'm actually really happy with my agency as well because they do not require me to sell any certain amount of money per month or anything.

and what Kevin said is true.. you can go months and months without getting paid. Thankfully that's not an issue for me but don't think you are going to get in this position and make a ton of money. I'm not saying there isn't POTENTIAL to make money though... like a lot of things.. you get out what you put into it. If you really hit the streets and get your name out there eventually you can get to a place where you have a steady stream of clients, but it would probably take at least 6 months and more like a year or more to get to that point.

Good luck!!! :D
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Old 06-24-2012, 12:37 PM   #23
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I have been thinking about becoming a licensed travel agent as well. While I realize that it is a low-commission career with 24/7 "office" hours, what I would really like to know is if there are any perks to being a travel agent? Discounts on airfare, rental cars, hotel rooms, etc...
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Old 07-01-2012, 11:44 AM   #24
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I agree, I have never charged any of my agents for their certs. I also will tell you it is hard but very very fun. now working part time i would have no clue what that's like. i kind of jumped head first, but be prepared to have very wacky hours and no money coming in for at least a year. i started my agency when dreams wasn't hiring "believe me i bothered john and pete for months" or any of the other big guys so i made my own path and its worked out. but follow your dream and enjoy the ride. you will be surprised where life takes you when you do something you truly love.
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Old 07-10-2012, 12:59 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pigletforever
I just got a position as a Disney authorized Travel agent. It was not easy but I know the end result will be easy. I start the Disney school next week. I work for a travel company on the east coast. they do not supply leads - most don't. A lot is word of mouth by friends. but ANY decent company will also offer you the chance to not only book Disney but other travel as well. I looked at lots of companies and many wanted fees upfront for things that you should not be charged for. one company wanted 350.00 to hook me up with the disney online class but if they are authorized disney planners it is free to them from what I was told. Another one insisted I have my house rewired to accommodate an extra fax, phone line, and computer for me to use exclusively.

It is a matter of looking and finding a good fit. If you want more info let me know.

Cathy
Do you have a link for info on the Disney authorization school? DW is curious. Thanks.
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Old 07-10-2012, 05:05 PM   #26
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I have been thinking about this too!! But if the local TA around my area aren't hiring, are there any good/great online TA that I could go through?? Also, how can I become a certifiable Disney TA?? I want to able to take those classes as well a become a certifiable TA. Anyone who has that information..I'd greatly appreciate it!!
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Old 07-21-2012, 05:21 PM   #27
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Ditto.
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Old 10-30-2012, 08:21 PM   #28
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It seems like a lot of you are discouraging people from looking at becoming a Disney certified travel agent only on the basis of the earnings side, noting that it's a sales job. I know you're being prudent and cautious about setting expectations, but I think most of us know it's a sales job, and that the income will be slow to start, and is 100% commission. That's something that people like me who truly want to do this, maybe part time to start, understand, and want to build a business with that in mind.

I think that many of the questions that I had about doing this, which I would love to do as well, have been answered, except for one, well actually two.

If someone does get on as an Independent Contractor with an agency, and pass all the certifications, does that person qualify for Disney (or other) travel discounts of their own? I'll admit, potential Disney discounts are a big factor in me wanting to do this, in addition to the sales job, Disney, and long term potential.

Second, do most agencies have sales quotas?

Thank you all for these great insights you've given so far!
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Old 10-30-2012, 10:45 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MJonesMBA2001 View Post
It seems like a lot of you are discouraging people from looking at becoming a Disney certified travel agent only on the basis of the earnings side, noting that it's a sales job. I know you're being prudent and cautious about setting expectations, but I think most of us know it's a sales job, and that the income will be slow to start, and is 100% commission. That's something that people like me who truly want to do this, maybe part time to start, understand, and want to build a business with that in mind.

I think that many of the questions that I had about doing this, which I would love to do as well, have been answered, except for one, well actually two.

If someone does get on as an Independent Contractor with an agency, and pass all the certifications, does that person qualify for Disney (or other) travel discounts of their own? I'll admit, potential Disney discounts are a big factor in me wanting to do this, in addition to the sales job, Disney, and long term potential.

Second, do most agencies have sales quotas?

Thank you all for these great insights you've given so far!
The questions you have would best be answered by your potential employer.
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Old 10-31-2012, 07:06 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MJonesMBA2001 View Post
It seems like a lot of you are discouraging people from looking at becoming a Disney certified travel agent only on the basis of the earnings side, noting that it's a sales job. I know you're being prudent and cautious about setting expectations, but I think most of us know it's a sales job, and that the income will be slow to start, and is 100% commission. That's something that people like me who truly want to do this, maybe part time to start, understand, and want to build a business with that in mind.

I think that many of the questions that I had about doing this, which I would love to do as well, have been answered, except for one, well actually two.

If someone does get on as an Independent Contractor with an agency, and pass all the certifications, does that person qualify for Disney (or other) travel discounts of their own? I'll admit, potential Disney discounts are a big factor in me wanting to do this, in addition to the sales job, Disney, and long term potential.

Second, do most agencies have sales quotas?

Thank you all for these great insights you've given so far!
I think a lot of the responses were about making sure the OP had reasonable expectations and a clear idea of what the job entails.

So many people I talk with think I am off traveling getting free hotels, cruises and trips to Disney. The reality is if you are busy enough to earn agent perks, you are often too busy to take advantage of them!
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