A senior travel consultant works with a travel agency. The consultant will start a career as a Junior Consultant for an agency after graduating from college or having had at least 2 to 5 years of strong sales experience. The consultant works closely with clients and industry agencies to provide business trips, vacations and itineraries.
The senior travel consultant specializes in planning, conducting and offering trips to established and potential clients. Some senior consultants work with specific clients or on special projects like group trips and travel adventures. In today's market one feature of travel agency success is the senior market. The senior travel consultant title is not to be mistaken for a consultant who works specifically on senior or the mature traveler trips. The senior travel consultant is senior by experience and will have spent at least 4 years as an active consultant. He or she will have strong domestic travel knowledge and at the very least a basic knowledge of foreign travel. There are senior consultants who work specifically with international travel.
A senior travel consultant can be an employee or an owner in the travel agency. The consultant will train junior consultants, plan and manage trips plus special projects. A consultant may work solely with the agency corporate clients. The consultant will arrange for airline ticketing, hotel accommodations and car rentals for the clients. He or she will also stay on top of travel arrangements and do follow-up on confirmations and reservations. The consultant works to save clients money, and keeps them up to date and informed about the trip.
A senior travel consultant will be expected to keep client profiles and be familiar with any special needs, requests and any frequent flier rewards that have been accrued. The consultant must be able to manage special projects, maintain quality control of the agency and support co-workers. It is very important for the consultant to keep up on airline regulations, current affairs, the daily price market and be able to produce quotes for domestic and foreign travel in a timely manner. Many agencies will require a consultant to be familiar with the Global Distribution System.
The Successful Senior Consultant
A senior travel consultant must maintain good customer and community relations. The consultant must be courteous, knowledgeable and possess good people skills. He or she may be given the trust and privilege of overseeing a team of staff members and working with the select clients of the agency. The successful senior travel consultant earns on average $79,000 a year. He or she may also be awarded bonuses and trips. A consultant with a proven record of handling emergency situations for a client on a trip will be an asset to any agency.
A travel agency will have its own specific requirements for a senior travel consultant. An agency may ask that the consultant be able to hear well while multitasking, particularly when on the phone. Physical requirements may also include the ability to read fine print while working with printed materials. The agency may ask if a consultant is capable of lifting at least 10 pounds while working with books, agency materials and guides.