But how did you transition from home back to a storefront?
Being a home based travel agent is not for the faint of heart. Sure we all love to travel. Who doesn’t? But selling travel and traveling are two very different things. At some point, we all question why we continue to do what we are doing especially dealing with price shoppers, tire kickers and the occasional rude, know-it-all client.
I had a successful home based agency in Ohio. However, I was working 60+ hours a week. Afraid of missing a sale, I was always answering the phone and booking travel even on the weekends. Much to the detriment of my family. I couldn’t shut it off. When tax time rolled around it was not pleasant. State, city and the IRS had to be paid. Before I moved, I sat down and figured up my hours, professional fees, CRM, insurance, marketing, taxes and was shocked how much I actually made—or didn’t make. The back office stuff drove me crazy i.e. invoicing and accounting.
When I made the move to Florida, I decided to work for a brick and mortar. I didn’t want to start over again with marketing and re-paying all the fees of owning my own agency. Florida requires a seller of travel license, which I understand can be a hassle to obtain. So far, it’s been great! I have co-workers to bounce things off of, a nice office environment, suppliers coming in almost daily to update us on what’s new, benefits and a marketing department. I am blessed to work in such a great office. I can concentrate on my job, which is supporting the Independent Contractors and selling travel.
I often get asked about my “old” clients. I am happy to say they have all moved with me. My clients do not care where I work as long as I take care of them, respond in a timely manner and keep giving them the great service they have come to expect. Another perk of working for this agency and is getting great amenities for my clients through their consortium. When they travel, I now have an emergency number for them to call. My clients are happy and I am happy.
As for me, I work Monday-Friday. Normal business hours. On the weekends you can find me on one our lovely beaches, paddle boarding, kayaking, hiking and enjoying the great weather here and reclaiming a bit of my life.