Of Passports And Profits

By Kelly Monaghan A recent opinion piece in Travel Weekly by Richard Turen bemoaned the fact that only 35% of Americans have a passport, in contrast to Canada, where 60% of citizens have a passport, and the United Kingdom, where 75% have one. That doesn’t sound good, does it? But read on. The percentage of…

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How To Be A Travel Agent. Really.

By Kelly Monaghan Thinking of becoming a travel agent? Well, I have some good news for you. Becoming a travel agent is easy. All you need is a credit card and willingness to lose a few hundred (or thousand) dollars if you pick the wrong host agency. And if you have the Home-Based Travel Agent…

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Evaluating Hotels For Your Clients

Evaluating hotels to help your clients By Kelly Monaghan When travel agents recommend hotels to clients they have to approach the challenge from two perspectives. First, which hotels are “good” in a general sense, that is which are well-maintained and well-run and possess the best amenities. Second, which hotel in particular will be a good…

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Hotel Loyalty? Not So Much

Hotel loyalty is weak, study finds By Kelly Monaghan Got a beef with your bank, your cable company, your cell phone company, an airline? Most of us have a gripe against at least one of these. So why do we keep using them? The simple reason is that changing can be just too much of…

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Travel, Travel, Travel

By Kelly Monaghan I received an interesting email from Karen L. in response to my series on involving a spouse in the travel business. Karen wrote of trying to interest her husband in the business with little success. In retrospect, she realized that what she should have done was take more fam trips! What a…

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The Travel Industry Is Outpacing The Rest Of The Economy

By Kelly Monaghan Maybe you’ve been following the news about how job growth in the United States is, shall we say, tepid and how the issue is becoming a hot potato in the presidential race. Or maybe, like me, you’ve just been putting your fingers in your ears and humming loudly whenever political news comes…

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Need Help Setting Up Your Agency?

By Kelly Monaghan I got a question from someone via the HomeTravelAgency.com Facebook page asking if I could be hired to help this person choose a host agency and “set up my IATA number.” Well, yes, actually. I suppose I could do that, but my fee would wind up being much more than the cost…

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Listening In On Your Competition

It is my personal opinion that using CruiseCompete is not a very wise strategy for any but the largest travel agencies, the ones who have the very best volume-based relationships with certain cruise lines and who can, thus, make a nickel in this kind of marketplace. It is also my opinion that the sort of people who use CruiseCompete (like those who swear by Travelocity and Expedia) are not the kind of customers most of us want. To that extent then, CruiseCompete is doing us all a service by servicing them.

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Lessons From The Costa Tragedy

By Kelly Monaghan I had a prospect recently remark to me “Can’t we arrange to get a really cheap cruise on that Italian line that keeps crashing and sinking in the Mediterranean? Seems they might be under-booked.” Very funny. (Not.) But there’s a lesson to be learned here (besides not making light of tragedy). To…

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More On Spousal Support

By Kelly Monaghan Recently, I wrote about some reasons why a husband and wife might want to team up as home-based travel agents. I thought I’d pretty much hit them all. Now comes an article in  Travel Weekly about Nancy and Dave Finn of Wisconsin which highlighted another reason a spouse might get involved in…

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