With millions of tourists exploring the Philippines every year, putting up a travel agency is a viable income-generating and cost-effective venture which you can operate everywhere even at the comfort of your home. It’s a great opportunity for you to earn money as people from almost all walks if life are willing to save up their hard-earned money to spend on dreamy vacations nowadays.
However, the surge in the number of visitors has encouraged many entrepreneurs to explore the tourism and travel industry. With the rise in number of competitors, it’s important that you offer products and services with value for money.
“People are looking for the most affordable tour packages, and at the same time, the best services they can get. When you put these two together, people will definitely come back to you,”Noilyn “Jojo” Estillore-Pinzon of Pink Suitcase Travel and Tours told Entrepreneur PH.
Here are some tips in launching a travel agency.
1. Know your niche.
There are already many established players in this industry so it is essential that you identify which niche you will likely succeed. Your company can concentrate on retail domestic travels or focus on corporate clients. If you think you have the resources, you may also target foreign clients or offer international tours.
2. Carefully select your suppliers.
Your partnership with airlines, hotel and accommodation, resorts, bus operators and tour guides will largely influence the success of your company. After determining the demands and needs of your clients, pick your supplier based on affordability, quality service as well as client convenience. Don’t take chances and make sure to deal only with long-established and reputable suppliers.
3. Offer promo packages.
Travelling nowadays is all about convenience. People are willing to shed extra bucks just to make their trip easy and hassle-free. Your company can benefit from this as you can earn extra money by making all the necessary arrangements for the entire tour. For instance, you can offer a promo package that covers the airline fares, roundtrip transfers, accommodation as well as day tours.
4. Invest in marketing.
Traditional marketing which involves the use of ads in traditional media may be a bit expensive if you’re just starting out. These days, you can take advantage of social media, tie up with travel bloggers and collaborate with discount websites to reach their target market. While your marketing skill remains critical, word-of-mouth endorsement is still considered the most effective tool in advertising.
5. Join conferences and trade show.
How do you make your company’s presence felt in an industry packed with big players? Introduce your company by joining trade shows and international conferences as well as getting industry recommendations. This will not only broaden your networks, it will also give you an opportunity in catching a big fish, say partner with an international travel agency.