Travel agents sell transportation, lodging, and entertainment activities to individuals and groups planning trips. They offer advice on destinations, plan trip itineraries, and make travel arrangements for clients.
Travel agents typically work in offices, but some work remotely because much of their time is spent on the phone and the computer. Most travel agents work for travel agencies, although about 1 in 10 were self-employed in 2014.
How to Become a Travel Agent
A high school diploma typically is required for someone to become a travel agent. However, many employers prefer additional formal training as well. Good communication and computer skills are essential.
Employment of travel agents is projected to decline 12 percent from 2014 to 2024. The ability of travelers to use the Internet to research vacations and book their own trips is expected to continue to suppress demand for travel agents. Job prospects should be best for travel agents who specialize in specific destinations or particular types of travelers.
This occupation supported 73,300 jobs in 2012 and 74,100 jobs in 2014, reflecting an increase of 1.1%. In 2012, this occupation was projected to decrease by 12.1% in 2022 to 64,400 jobs. As of 2014, to keep pace with prediction, the expected number of jobs was 71,500, compared with an observed value of 74,100, 3.6% higher than expected. This indicates current employment trends are better than the 2012 trend within this occupation. In 2014, this occupation was projected to decrease by 11.9% in 2024 to 65,400 jobs. Linear extrapolation of the 2012 projection for 2022 results in an expected number of 62,600 jobs for 2024, 4.3% lower than the 2014 projection for 2024. This indicates expectations for future employment trends are better than the 2012 trend within this occupation.