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As of 2010, travel agents can make almost $40,000 a year in Tennessee according to The Riley Guide. Aside from the moderate pay, travel agent certification is a fairly easy process that anyone with good communication and customer skills can achieve. In Tennessee, there are a number of technical colleges and online schools that offer training. There are a also a number of travel agencies looking for new employees.
Enroll in an online or technical college for travel agent certification. The University of Phoenix and Strayer University have a number of campuses throughout Tennessee in such cities as Memphis and Nashville, but also offer programs online. Online schools such as Ashford University also offer programs on your schedule. Programs may be just certification, others may be for actual degrees in hospitality and tourism. Pick the program that fits your time frame and needs best.
Complete geography, computer and business courses to receive your certification. These classes will teach geographical locations, how to market your business and how to use computer programs related to the travel industry. Be sure to send in your paperwork if the course does not automatically supply you with certification.
Apply for a job at one of Tennessee's many travel agencies such as Salair Travel. Apply for a job while working toward your certification or degree to gain experience. When you work in a larger agency there are a variety of ways to not only gain experience, but work your way up to a travel consultant after receiving certification.
Join the Tennessee chapter of the American Society of Travel Agents. This organization provides networking events and special discounts for travel agents.
Pay attention at the travel agency. Subscribe to newsletters with organizations like ASTA to be aware of changes in popular vacation spots or means of travel.
Sara Hickman owns a preschool science-based entertainment business in the Greater Cincinnati area. She has a bachelor's degree in communication and psychology from the University of Wisconsin, Stevens Point.