All the Discounts, Special Training, and Benefits You Receive as a Travel Agent
Imagine receiving huge discounts on your Disney vacations. Not just the normal discounts that anyone can get. Discounts that make your travel obsession a little more affordable.
That’s the life of a Travel Agent. As a travel professional, you get access to incredible benefits like discounts on Disney hotels, theme park tickets at reduced rates, and the ability to tour cruise ships for free.
Not to mention getting paid to plan theme park vacations.
Um. Yes, please!
This article is a continuation of my Step-by-Step Guide to Becoming a Disney Travel Planner. That’s where you can learn the travel lingo I use in this article and get an in-depth look at starting a career a Travel Agent.
I’ve been a Disney Travel Planner for three years and have built my travel business from nothing. Never in my wildest dreams did I believe that I could get travel benefits and make magic for a living.
Now I want to share all my experience with those of you who want to start your dream job too!
To get started, sign up for my FREE course below: How to Jumpstart Your Career as a Disney Travel Planner in 5 Days!
Helpful Resources for Travel Agents
- Frequently Asked Questions About Starting a Career as a Disney or Universal Travel Planner
- Host Agency Reviews
- How to Jumpstart Your Career as a Travel Agent in 5 Steps
Earn Commission for Your Own Vacations
Yes, you can earn money by booking your own vacations! Whether you’re booking a vacation for yourself or a client, you will earn money doing it. This means you’re getting a fairly large discount on your own travel plans. A commission can be earned on Disney hotels, theme park tickets, tours, cruises, rental cars, and other travel.
How do you get paid for your travel?
You will receive your commission once your vacation is finished.
How much of a commission do you receive when you book a vacation?
It depends on the price of your purchases and the commission cut you get from your Host Agency.
As an example, you will earn about 10% commission on Disney World packages. Meaning, you can book a vacation including tickets and a hotel stay for about $2000 and get back around $200.
That’s a fantastic discount if you already plan on staying onsite. You can apply any deals or discounts Disney may be running at the time too!
Prefer to watch a video about the perks of becoming a Disney Travel Planner?
Watch the video below and follow me on YouTube for more!
Most companies will give you incentives to sell more travel. For example, Disney recently ran a campaign that allowed you to earn a free Adventures by Disney River Cruise if you booked three River Cruise packages. Many other travel companies run incentives whether it’s for free cruises, tours, or resort stays. The incentive motivates you to sell more, earn more commission, and receive bonus vacations for yourself!
Property and Ship Tours
The opportunity to tour Disney properties and cruise ships is my favorite benefit of all! Disney will often schedule private tours for Travel Agents in Disneyland, Disney World, and Disney cruise ships for Travel Agents. The purpose of the private tour is to familiarize yourself with hotels and cruise ships you haven’t visited before. This way you can explain the properties to your clients in detail and sell vacation packages more effectively.
The hotel tours give you a chance to see the rooms, facilities, and restaurants up-close. While the Disney Cruise Line tours allow you to experience a Disney cruise ship without paying for a full cruise vacation. For both, you will have a guide that can answer any of your specific questions.
Plus, it’s super fun to visit the properties if you’ve never been on a cruise or stayed at a Disney resort!
Sales & Marketing Assistance
College of Disney Knowledge
Ever fantasized about going to Disney school? Want to major in Churros with a minor in Fireworks? Well, you’re going to love the College of Disney Knowledge.
Sadly, you won’t be able to learn how to make churros. You will be guided through course units that teach you about the theme parks and other Disney destinations. Chances are you probably know a lot about Disney, but these courses are designed to fill in the gaps for other experiences you may not know about. Getting to know all of Disney makes it easier for you to sell diverse vacation packages like Aulani or Adventures by Disney. Your clients will appreciate your Disney knowledge too!
The Disney Institute offers training seminars focused on leadership, employee engagement, and service. The program is a great way for travel leaders to hone their sales skills. The program travels to regions across the U.S. so you don’t have to go too far from home! Disney Institue courses have a fee, but they offer discounts to Travel Agents sometimes.
Additional in-person training sessions are held throughout the year too. Last year, AMA Waterways and Adventures by Disney held a Lunch and Learn where Travel Agents came together for a seminar.
Universal Studios also hosts in-person training sessions across the country. These sessions are free to Travel Agents! It’s a great way to meet other travel professionals and learn about the theme parks from the company’s leaders.
Work from Home
What’s better than getting to work in your Mickey pajamas? In all seriousness, working from home means working around your schedule and on your terms. I wanted to make a career change because I wanted the flexibility of working from anywhere. Now I have the ability to work during my own set hours and I’m only accountable for myself.
One Word of Advice: Create office hours for yourself and stick with them. Communicate to your clients what hours you’re available and do not contact them outside of these hours.
Unless it is a true travel emergency, there is no reason for your clients to be contacting you at all hours of the night. Create clear boundaries or people will begin to take advantage of your time, whether it is intentional or not.
Travel Perks For Experienced Travel Agents
All the perks I’ve mentioned are valid for new and experienced Travel Agents. Once you become more established and earn your IATA or CLIA card you will have access to a lot more benefits!
This is true for theme park vacations and almost any other destination you decide to sell. Organizations like Sandals, ClubMed, Funjet, and AMA Waterways provide Travel Agents with the opportunity to take Familiarization (“FAM”) Trips. FAM Trips are a way for Travel Agents to experience the destinations at a highly discounted rate so they can sell the product easier.
I mean, it’s pretty much the coolest training session you’ll ever be a part of.
On top of that, you can earn deals with other industries like tours, rental cars, or transportation companies. When you sign on with a Host Agency they will be able to tell you what kind of Travel Agent rates are available.
Disney Resort Discounts
Disney and Universal often provide Travel Agent deep-cut rates for onsite resorts. The rates are usually quite good and you’re allowed to share the room with your immediate family. I’ve seen rooms be discounted by about 50% in the past. The only disadvantage is that the rooms are subject to availability and there are some blockout dates around Christmastime. Despite that, you’re getting a fantastic rate for an official Disney hotel. You will have to have a valid IATA card to make the reservations.
Offsite Resort Discounts
Most chain hotels will offer Travel Agent discounts too. If it’s not explicitly listed anywhere on the website, just call the hotel and ask for their Travel Agent rates. If anything, you will probably get the commission back for booking with them.
Discounted or Free Theme Park Tickets
Some Host Agencies will offer a free one-day pass to the theme parks and others will give you a good discount on them. This is dependent on the status of your Host Agency and you will have to check with them to see if you qualify.
The main discount that Travel Agents go crazy about are hotel rates. Outside of that, you can get a ton of discounts on Disney cruises, Aulani, Adventures by Disney, and pretty much anything else they own.
Much like the resorts, you can get some pretty hefty discounts on any of these. I’ve seen cruise cabins for $1600 be discounted to $800. This depends on cruise availability and they usually release cabins around two months in advance of the departure date. This means you will have less time to prepare for travel, but you’ll get a nice deal.
You get to Plan Disney Vacations for a Living
I truly believe this is the best perk of all. When I learned that people were making a living planning theme park vacations, I knew it was my calling. I daydreamed about the day I could quit my office job and become a full-time Disney Travel Planner. Now I spend my days looking up rates for Disney hotels, creating in-depth itineraries for the parks, and connecting with amazing families across the country.
The job is fun, but it’s also extremely gratifying. I’m constantly receiving feedback from my clients expressing their gratitude about how I made their vacation an amazing experience they will never forget.
Check out this email I received from the Jackson family.
“I just wanted to follow up with you after our trip and tell you what a fantastic time we had! It was seriously the best vacation we’ve ever taken. The weather was great (luckily), the kids had a blast, and everything was soooo convenient! The Polynesian was an A++ recommendation and you made everything so easy for us. Thanks again for all of the help – we’re already trying to figure out when we can go back!”-Trent, Chicago
Emails like this tell me that I chose the right career and I’m doing my job well. There’s nothing better than doing something you love, making magic for families, and earning money while you do it. Want to learn how to get started as a Disney Travel Planner right now? Fill out the form below and learn how to start your new career!
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