Dad, I love reading your site, and I think that it would be fair to say that I love Walt Disney World as much as you do. My husband and I were just wondering how could I become a Disney World Travel so I could put my obsession with Disney to good use? I'm not currently a travel agent, but I do have a bachelor's degree. Any advice? Thanks a ton!
Become a Disney World Travel agent and shine the light ...
My best advice for you about your desire to become a Disney World Travel Agent is don't do it. Yes, I'm being a bit facetious, but I'm also a bit serious Let me explain.
The Good Part - being a Disney World Travel Agent means you are always talking about, thinking about reading about the best vacation destination in the solar system. When you go on vacation to Walt Disney World it's tax deductible research. And the it's just a lot of fun.
The Bad Part - Disney is your biggest competitor. Disney spends bazillions on advertising every year. They don't advertise saying contact your travel agent for more details. They say go to our website and book your vacation with us. They also pay less than any other vacation provider commission wise. (Enough whining.)
So how do you go about becoming a Disney World Travel Agent. It's easy and hard. It's pretty easy to become a travel agent these days. I won't go through the whole process but the way I did it was to go to the bookstore and buy a book on how to do it. I found a local agent I could work with and learned the ropes. That's probably the best way to work through an established agent and let them show you the ropes.
Travel Agents are always looking for good people. To be a good agent you have to have a short memory and be able to sell ice to Eskimos. A Disney World Travel Agent needs to know all about Disney World (like Dad does) and to be able to sell it to others. Can you sell Disney to your friends?
Dad's Bottom Line
Rae, being a Disney World Travel Agent is hard work. Even the best agencies have about a 10% success rate. You'll be disappointed just about every day. But it is a whole lot of fun!
I am currently employed but a large travel agency selling only Disney Destinations. I would like to stop sharing my commision and leave the agency. I do not know where to start. Can anyone help me? firstname.lastname@example.org
Mar 13, 2013
Great as a side job by: Anonymous
I sell Disney on the side.. Because its my passion. But, just being honest, no matter how good I am.. Most people love the idea of booking it themselves. As the cost is exactly the same either way, it makes it hard to compete. My biggest mistakes have been sharing my wealth of knowledge to folks who "plan" to use me, but end up doing it on line anyway. So, I save the inside tips for after the actual booking! I agree travel is best left to those who understand it but just being for real.. That matters less to people these days and DW spends much in advertising to solidify that concept. It's a lovely side thing and I get 10 percent off of my own trips.. Which are many! Other then that however... I haven't quit my day job! I do so love the mouse!!!!
Sep 21, 2011
Hobby? No way! by: Amanda
I agree with you. Being a Disney based travel agent is not something you can do as a hobby. Knowing Disney as your product is only a small part of the job. Do I love Disney? Yes. Does that make me a good business person? No.
At Pixie and Pirate Destinations (Dad's travel partners) I personally work with my agents to make sure they understand how Disney works and how to keep their clients happy. We all love Disney but it doesn't stop there. Communication with our clients is one of our top priorities - knowing the correct questions to ask and the right answers to their questions.
This is not a job for someone who wants to do it "just for fun". This is a long-term commitment to providing customer service that is not available when you book through Disney directly. Our Disney knowledge is important, but our people skills and communication is also very, very essential.
Sep 20, 2011
Being a travel agent is being a SALES professional by: Joe R
If you consider Disney to be your biggest competitor, you weren't taught properly how to sell yourself and your services; you haven't learned to show your value as an agent.
There is SOOOO much more that a travel agent can do above and beyond what Disney can do when you call into a call center with hundreds of phone agents; for one, your client can contact you each time instead of calling the call center and not getting the same person each time.
Travel Agents are making a strong comeback because of this - clients WANT and NEED KNOWLEDGEABLE agents to plan trips for them and give them proper advice.
Unfortunately, too many people think they can just call themselves a travel agent and make some extra money, they come in with a hobbyist mindset. The business needs professionals! Unless you are dedicated to learning the business, learning indepth about destinations and learning about sales as your number #1 priority, you will struggle.
My recommendation is to find a Disney-focused travel agency that takes agents and trains them properly in Disney as well as sales techniques. If you find them, and dedicate yourself to working this as a true business, you will be successful and more than happy with your yearly commission.
Be sure those that you contact put an emphasis on training and becoming a sales person, not just being a hobbyist.