Travel consultant takes care of all aspects of travel to ensure smooth and comfortable journey and stay for the client. As a consultant you will have to plan, execute and co-ordinate on various aspects of travel on behalf of the client. The competition in this industry is stiff and many has abandoned, disillusioned or disheartened their dream towards this passion. This job can be fascinating and rewarding for those with the talent and willingness to work hard. The question is- do you have what is takes?
Like any other profession, here too the right education helps. A degree in travel and tourism will definitely help you land an opening. But no amount of theoretical knowledge can help you in your real-life career as a travel consultant. Your experience and desire to learn and explore can go a long way in charting your career path. You can not afford to make mistakes as that can cost you and your client. During the preliminary stage in this career, you will learn the art of "selling". But a true consultant will never come across as a salesman. He will give the customer the best bargains, which in turn will get him good commission. But he will keep the clients interests first so ensuring client loyalty.
Another trait that is important for client-loyalty is the personality of the travel consultant. He has to be pleasant and patient. He must always be open to complaints. In fact, he must make sure that he gets customer's feedback so that he can improve upon his performance. This personal interaction with the client could have been the key to saving your job in this internet-driven world where most customers find such consultants excessive. Human touch goes a long way in reaching out to the customer.
The travel consultant needs to be well-traveled and well-read. He should have a deep understanding of the cultures and traditions of various places. He should be aware of the visa rules and exchange rates. He must have intimate knowledge of the public transport and should be able to suggest a different type of stay for each budget. He would have to be up-to-date on the traffic conditions, the weather details, holidays, etc to plan the client's trip.
Besides this, the travel consultant should also have a huge network base. He should not be shy about meeting people or asking for favors. He should have the best possible Inter-personal skills so that he can pull the right strings at the right time. He should have global contacts with the important and also not-so-important people. He should have a well-known presence so that he can further mark his influence. He should also be computer savvy. Most of the consulting happens online these days and therefore this becomes important. Internet also helps to be in touch with a large number of people spread over the world. Social networking sites and blogs help you maintain your contact and can also become a tool for promotion. Thus in addition to the above qualities, the consultants should also be able to keep abreast with the changing times.