The future of the travel agent opportunity is changing as more and more store front agencies are closing each year. Many traditional travel agents working as an employee, earning an hourly or salary wage are now being left with few job opportunities. As thousands of travel agencies close each year with very few store front agencies opening, the future for the traditional travel agent looking forward to getting a job in the travel industry is not looking very good. So what are the options for the displaced traditional travel agent? Why would anyone want to start a career in the travel industry with little hope of securing a job? How will travel agents create loyalty with customers to compete with the internet? Rovia will be the answer offering hope, opportunity and a brand that consumers will want to book their travel with a travel agent that is affiliated with Rovia.
Prior to the airline industry canceling agency payments of domestic airline commissions and the “dot com” website brokers offering lower prices and lower processing fees the “old school” travel agency concept thrived. In the old days people were eager to enter into the travel industry by paying big money to go to travel school, learn a GDS system and get a job at a travel agency down the street from where they live. Many “old school” travel agents joined the industry with an expectation to make part-time to full-time income, travel the world as a travel agent and enjoy a career that was in an industry growing, an industry protected by the industry associations and an industry that was fun to participate.
Unfortunately the “old school” system did not predict the changes coming nor did the “old school” system attempt to figure out how to adapt. Rather the plan has been to fight the change and provide false hope leading to uncertainty and confusion. Rovia visionaries have been involved in the travel industry for years, predicting the changes and working behind the scenes to develop a system that will not compete or hurt the traditional “old school” system but become the future home for displaced travel agents and the vehicle for the future generation of travel agents that will replace those that leave the industry due to their unwillingness to change.
Many travel agents are searching for viable options to have opportunity in the travel industry. The trend over the past few years has been to offer traditional travel agents a “host” travel agent opportunity. The “host” agency concept provides the “old school” traditional “GDS” trained “accredited” travel agent the opportunity to contract with the parent “host” agency as an independent contractor, work from home and have remote access to the “host” agency GDS system. The “host” agency concept is a business opportunity allowing the “hosted” agent to make money based on earning on average from 80% to 100% of the commissions generated from the customers that the “hosted” travel agent brings with them due to relationship or loyalty or new customers developed through their own marketing efforts. The “hosted” agent is not earning a salary or hourly but works on commission and processing fees only.
Many “host” agencies charge small upfront activation fees and monthly fees ranging from $0 to $299 per month. The fees are variable due to different support and technology options but know that any program offering “free” programs are usually bad due to lack of support or technology. Fees any parent “host” agency charges are in fact used cover the cost to conduct business especially, support the outside travel agent especially if the “host” agency issues 80% or more of the commissions.
Since the launch of the “host” concept the travel industry has been flooded with companies offering different gimmicks including the “card mill” concept where a non-travel companies sell a business opportunity with the expectation for the person that purchased the business to receive a travel agent ID card to receive travel industry benefits and discounts with no intention to sell travel or earn travel commissions. Many of the “card mill” programs offer recruiting income to the same group of people to make money selling the ID cards or opportunity with no real end consumer product or service being sold.
Rovia business model is strongly against the “card mill” style business as Rovia does not issue any travel agent ID card and Rovia does not pay or compensate for “recruiting” other agents. Rovia offers an opportunity for anyone interested to market and promote travel the ability to contract with Rovia though a third party marketing company and starting as a Leisure Travel Consultant (LTC). Based on education and training the LTC can work their way up to earning higher commissions and have remote access to any of Rovia GDS systems as Rovia has contracts with all major GDS systems.
So what is the problem with the “host” agency concept? Based on tremendous research and fact finding, Rovia has found that those working in a “host” agency relationship are finding it hard to maintain their traditional customer base and impossible to generate new business due to all the competition. Traditional travel agents for the most part are great quote givers, processors and bookers of travel but are not great at developing new customers or marketing for new business while working at home. Many travel agents are supplementing their income by finding a part time job outside the travel industry to make a living while commissions start to catch up as most commissions are not seen 60 to 90 days after travel has been completed.
Rovia is offering a “hybrid” agency concept that will solve the “host agency” challenge by offering qualified and approved travel agents leads plus an opportunity to earn commissions before the trip has been taken. Rovia has developed creative ways to get our travel agents fast money but also creative systems to generate customers and systems to retain their customers through Rovia Preferred and Premium Customer program where Rovia offers incentives, rewards and other benefits for the consumer to maintain their business relationship with a Rovia travel agent or LTC, BTA or TRS.
If you have an interest to learn more about joining the Rovia family please Contact Us.