How does Travel Counsellors work?
Travel Counsellors is a global travel business committed to providing you with all the tools, technology, and guidance for starting your own travel business.
You'll develop personal relationships with your clients, really understanding their preferences and crafting customised trips just for them. And with a wide network of travel suppliers all in one place on the Phenix in-house booking system, including airlines, hotels, and tour operators, you'll have all the resources you need to create unforgettable itineraries with ease.
In short, we'll give you all the support you need to make a successful travel business!
What experience do I need to become a Travel Counsellor?
Everyone has a route to becoming a Travel Counsellor, whether you’ve got years of experience selling travel or are completely new to the industry. We currently offer the following options:
Leisure: For travel professionals with a minimum of 3/4 years’ recent experience in a role selling travel.
Corporate: For travel professionals with a minimum of 3/4 years’ experience in managing travel for corporate clients.
Business Development: For those with 3/4 years’ sales or account management experience in the corporate travel sector.
Travel Academy: For people who want to set up their own travel business but have never worked in the travel industry previously.
Return to Travel: For travel professionals with a minimum of 3/4 years’ experience in a role selling travel, but who have had a break of more than 12 months.
Travel Trade: For people who have previously worked in other areas of travel - such as product, marketing or hospitality - but not selling holidays directly to customers.
Agency Owner: For those currently running their own independent travel agency or franchise.
Our new franchise team will be happy to discuss your individual experience and advise you on the best route for you.
What does it cost to become a Travel Counsellor?
The joining fees depend on the route of entry, and your previous background in travel.
- Leisure, Corporate and Business Development are priced at £295 +VAT
- Return to Travel is £995 +VAT
- Travel Trade is £995 +VAT
- Travel Academy is flexibly priced. Get in touch to discuss.
- Agency Owners: We'd love to discuss with you one-to-one
After joining, the monthly fee is £40 +VAT. This covers everything you need to set up and run your business, with all Travel Counsellors trademark and brand privileges.
Compared to other franchises - inside and outside of travel - we’re competitively priced and widely regarded as the most supportive travel franchise around.
What are the benefits of becoming a Travel Counsellor?
Becoming a Travel Counsellor opens up a world of opportunities. Here are just some of the benefits you can enjoy:
- Flexibility: Run your own home-based travel business and set your own schedule. You’re the boss, so you have the freedom to work when and where you want.
- Access to a network of travel suppliers: Gain access to a wide range of airlines, hotels, and tour operators to design excellent itineraries.
- Support and guidance: Travel Counsellors is renowned for being the most supportive travel franchise. You'll receive ongoing guidance and personal support from a team of experts who are dedicated to your success.
- Personal and professional growth: As a Travel Counsellor, you'll constantly learn and grow. We provide training tools that help you enhance your travel knowledge, develop business skills, and deepen your understanding of customer service.
- A sense of community: Enjoy get-togethers and social events with other Travel Counsellors in your area. Being a part of Travel Counsellors means you can connect with like-minded individuals and join a supportive community that shares your passion for travel.
Will you help me market my business?
Of course. You’ll have access to professional and effective marketing materials created by our talented team of creatives. We’re also on hand with plenty of tips on how to market yourself in your local area.
If you’d like to discuss upcoming marketing campaigns, our marketing team is always just a call away.
Is there out of hours support?
Our duty office is available 24/7 to help and support both you and your customers should an issue arise, either pre-departure or in-resort.
The duty office monitors worldwide events. If an issue arises that may affect your clients, they’ll communicate accordingly. They’ll also run a report to identify the bookings that may be in resort or travelling imminently and notify you of any bookings affected.
The Travel Counsellor and the duty office work together to ensure customers are always looked after.
All our systems are available 24/7, no matter where in the world you are. The majority of our support teams are contactable during traditional office hours, with key teams also available in the evenings and at weekends.
What happens when I go on holiday?
We all need a break, and we make sure your business won’t suffer while you’re taking some well-earned time away. We operate a buddy system, so a named Travel Counsellor will look after your customers while you recharge your batteries.
What support is available?
Our TC Support Portal is your first port of call for all help and enquiries. You’ll find resources and similar questions from other Travel Counsellors - which are constantly being added to - allowing you to get the answers you need so you can carry on with what you were doing.
If you can't find what you need, you can submit an enquiry which will be picked up by our TC support team, who are a multi-skilled team of travel experts.
I've always enjoyed going on educational trips - will I still have that opportunity?
Sure. We understand that to sell a destination, first-hand experience is invaluable. Thanks to our strong supplier relationships, we’re delighted to offer a wide range of educational opportunities to all Travel Counsellors.
Do you provide a client base?
No, we don’t - that’s up to you. You’ll build your client base from your personal network and through referrals. This ensures the quality of the leads, rather than wasting your time with potential clients that aren’t interested.
We suggest that you compile a list of family, friends and other personal contacts who you feel comfortable will support your new venture.
You’ll receive our full support to help you nurture a loyal customer base, promote your business, and attract new leads.
Can I employ my own staff?
Absolutely, and we encourage our Travel Counsellors to flex our business model and run their businesses in a way that suits them and their customers.
However, we would encourage you to carefully consider the financial implications and responsibilities if you decide to build a team.
Is there an IATA licence and ATOL protection?
Yes, you can process scheduled air bookings, and the ticketing is done by our team at head office. We also have our own consolidated rates with major airlines in the UK and Ireland.
Our holidays are ATOL protected and we also have the Travel Counsellors Trust Fund, which ensures all customer money is 100% protected.
How much can I earn as a Travel Counsellor?
The average Travel Counsellor earns £32,000 a year – that’s £6,000 more than the average high street travel agent. Many of our ‘Gold’ and Corporate Travel Counsellors earn more than £100,000 each year.
Your earning potential is completely uncapped, so the more you put in, the more you get out.
What is the commission split?
Our commission model is based on a 60/40 split. You take 60% of the profit you make on your bookings, and with our in-house booking system, Phenix, you’ll have complete control over the margin you make on these.
Our Travel Counsellors tell us that the service and support they receive make the 60/40 split great value for money.
Business Development Travel Counsellors operate on a commission split that's agreed between themselves and the Corporate Travel Counsellor to whom they pass the business. During your training and onboarding, we'll explain how to implement this.
Is there anything that I can offer my customers as a Travel Counsellor which sets me apart?
Yes, lots of things. Our Travel Counsellors stand apart by building personal relationships with their customers and delivering the highest level of personal service and care of anyone in the travel industry.
It’s also our unique approach to travel that makes us different from the rest. You’ll be able to offer your customers an authentic, tailor-made travel service, creating bespoke, 'one-off' itineraries that cannot be found anywhere else.
And that’s what keeps our customers coming back again and again. In fact, we’re rated highly on Trustpilot, with an impressive 4.9 out of 5 stars.
Can I choose my own hours?
Yes - it’s your business, so you’re the boss. Just make sure you’re devoting enough time to developing your business and nurturing your customer base.
If you’re working one hour a day and expecting incredible rewards, you might be disappointed – it’s no coincidence that our most successful Travel Counsellors are also our hardest working.
The flexibility that running your own business offers is one of the many reasons why our Travel Counsellors made the decision to be their own boss.
Do I have to be home-based?
Not at all, although the vast majority of our Travel Counsellors work from home. If you prefer, you can rent a non-retail office space and work from there.
Many Travel Counsellors also work on the go - as long as there’s a secure internet connection, the world is your office.
I've heard homeworking can be lonely. What support is available?
There are more than 1,900 Travel Counsellors working around the clock, around the world – so there’s always someone to talk to if you need support. But we’re not just about webcams, message boards and TCTV broadcasts.
You’ll have plenty of opportunities to meet your friends and colleagues, from your initial training course to celebration days, training and our prestigious events.
Many Travel Counsellors meet up with others in their local area, so don't be surprised if you get a phone call inviting you to their next meet-up!
We also have a qualified personal counsellor and a number of our support colleagues are trained mental health first aiders, plus your business development coach will check in with you.
Basically, as a member of the Travel Counsellors family, you’ll never feel alone.
How long does it take to get set up?
In addition to your notice period - if you’re moving from an existing employer - your Travel Counsellors phone line will need installing, which can take a couple of weeks to happen.
How long is the initial training?
We offer a range of training courses for people of all degrees of travel sales experience. All training courses begin with a 10-day learning programme, delivered virtually by our experienced training team.
Further training is self-guided and tailored to your previous experience.
Is there a minimum sales target?
No, we don't set any defined targets. However, we encourage you to achieve a minimum of £200,000 in sales during your first 12 months.
This is in your own financial interests and ensures you’re setting off on a path to a sustainable, successful business. And this shouldn’t be a problem if you give your full commitment and follow our advice on best practices.
When do I get paid?
You’ll be paid monthly by bank transfer, with commissions earned between six weeks before the customer travel date.
Are you ready to become a Travel Counsellor? We know it’s a big career decision, and that’s why we’re here to help you make it. Get in touch and speak to one of our experts today to learn more about travel agent jobs and how you can take control of your career.