Retirement Travel As A Home-Based Travel Agent
Retirement travel has a nice ring to it, doesn’t it? In fact, one of the main reasons that people look forward to retiring is to travel more.
If you are contemplating retirement or even are already retired (lucky you!), the thought of travel in retirement has no doubt crossed your mind. But before you start browsing through those escorted tour brochures advertising “senior travel,” you might want to consider the benefits of becoming a home-based travel agent.
For starters, becoming a home-based travel agent is incredibly easy — if you are willing to part with a bit of cash. And if you know how the industry really works, it’s easy to be a travel agent without paying any up front fee.
Now I’m not talking about those come-ons that say “give us a chunk of change and we’ll give you a laminated ID card that will give you all sorts of super discounts and then book all your travel through us and get a tiny ‘commission’.” Of course, if you want to spend a lot of money for very little in return, that’s up to you.
No, I’m talking about becoming a legitimate, bona fide travel agent who finds folks who are looking for a cruise or a tour or a stay at an all-inclusive resort or a Disney World vacation and makes the arrangements for them in exchange for a very nice commission.
What’s especially attractive about becoming a travel agent in retirement is that this is an avocation you can pursue full-time, part-time or even on a casual basis. In fact, starting on a casual basis is an excellent idea. That way you can learn the ropes before making a big commitment of time and resources.
One of the best ways to get started, in my opinion, is to set a goal of putting together one or two trips a year. Trips which you take yourself along with some good friends or family members.
It’s a simple matter of contacting your circle of friends and saying, “We’re taking a cruise. Wanna come? I’ll handle all the details.” Find four couples to come along and, assuming a 10% commission, you’ve got yourself a luxury cruise at half off! And if you know how the business really operates, it’s pretty easy to get a better commission than that! Oh, and did you know that a “group cruise” on one of those all-inclusive European luxury river cruises starts with just five cabins?
Here’s a variation on that theme: Instead of finding a cruise and then finding a bunch of friends to go with you, find a bunch of people who want to travel together (a church group, a garden club, a bridge club) and then find the perfect trip for them. If it’s a club or a charity, it’s even possible to build a contribution into the fare to make it a terrific fund raiser!
Got grandchildren? How about a trip to Disney World? You and your spouse, your daughter and son-in-law, and two kids adds up to a nice commission. And you can even enlist the kids (even the grandkids) to scare up some of their friends to add to the fun — and your commission.
And if you and your spouse want to travel solo, you can find super low-cost “seminars-at-seas” designed to teach new home-based travel agents like you how to sell cruises. You spend a little time in classes and a lot of time learning about the cruise line simply by experiencing all the fun the cruise and its ports of call have to offer.
If this is sounding like the perfect plan for your retirement and you would like to learn how the travel industry really works so you don’t fall victim to those slick come-ons out there, you need my Home-Based Travel Agent Success Course.