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How to Become a Licensed IATA Travel Agent

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If you are interested in becoming a travel agent, or you are already working in the field, it is worthwhile to get accredited by the International Air Transport Association (IATA). As a licensed IATA travel agent, you gain immediate recognition as holding to the highest industry standards for travel professionals. In order to gain accreditation from the IATA, you must first meet the requirements.

Produce proof that you are working for a legally registered travel agency, or if you work independently, that your business is legal. Submit all relevant business licenses, tax forms and insurance records. Include documentation of all local and state licensing.

Provide financial records showing the fiscal solvency of your travel agency. Bring a copy of all bank transactions, organized neatly and in chronological order. Make a copy of your business plan and include it to show that you are adhering to your budget plans.

Show evidence of your commitment to the travel industry. Present your sales records showing your achievements in selling airline tickets, hotel arrangements, individual and group tours. Enter all your sales totals into a spreadsheet and present the information in a clear and understandable format.

Prepare copies of all insurance policies covering your work as a travel agent, including errors and omissions insurance. This requirement may be waived if you have five years experience as a travel agent. If you wish to waive this insurance requirement, you must provide proof of your five years of work experience.

Pay the required accreditation fee, which is $165 if you are self-employed or work for a private agency. The fee is $360 if you work for a corporate travel department. Pay the accreditation fee in U.S. dollars.

Receive your full accreditation as a licensed IATA travel agent. Get a letter with the date you received accreditation, an official IATA Certificate of Accreditation, an IATA window decal to display at your agency, and your unique IATA numeric code, which gives you international recognition as a licensed IATA travel agent.


When preparing documentation for IATA licensing, make an extra copy of all relevant documents to keep in your personal files.


When you receive your IATA numeric code, guard it carefully as you would any personal ID number.


Tzvi Raphael has worked with Fortune 500 companies helping them to maximize their online brand exposure through innovative Web design, content, and marketing. Additionally, Raphael is a writer for multiple high-traffic blogs and websites including eHow and Weight Ladder.

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