Corporate travel agents, like those at Dadeland Travel Agency, make travel arrangements for managers, business owners, and employees of corporations. It's important to have a vast knowledge of the travel industry and its trends and also to have knowledge of how the global travel industry works as a whole.
How do you become a corporate travel agent? Is it the same training as a regular consumer travel agent receives? There are some differences, in fact. If you wish to be a corporate travel agent, these are the steps to follow.
Become A Travel Agent First
The first step in becoming a corporate travel agent is to get the training necessary to be a regular consumer travel agent first. This means going to college and taking a program that teaches the basics, such as hotel booking, airline reservations, scheduling travel, accounting, and even marketing. A good idea is to take a course in travel and tourism as well. This will give you a basis in tour operations, currency conversions, and more.
Get Experience As An Agent
Just because you graduate and become a travel agent doesn't mean you will be hired as a corporate travel agent. You need to gain experience booking travel for families, single travelers, and eventually business travelers first. They all take different types of skills, such as customer service, adaptability in bookings, and being able to make changes for your clients at a moment's notice should the need arise.
You need to be able to add travelers to itineraries within short notice, be able to obtain preferred seats on planes, or be able to upgrade hotel rooms at the resort your client booked with. This all comes with experience in the industry and with time doing the job.
Once you have been in the travel industry for a while and have booked several business travelers, you can obtain your Global Travel Professional certification, or GBTA. This is essential when working as a corporate travel agent.
Most agencies that employ corporate travel agents require this certification as it proves you have the necessary training and skills to do the job. If you prefer, once you get this certification, you can apply for work as a travel consultant as well, or open your own agency.
Work Your Way Up
Once you have your GBTA certification, apply to corporate travel agencies. You most likely at first will do general travel bookings for company employees, but nothing too complicated. You will have to work your way up as you gain more experience to business owners and larger company travel plans that involve multiple employees or bosses.