Monday, July 15, 2024

Becoming a Travel Agent – My Journey

Becoming a Travel Agent – My Journey

Becoming a Travel Agent has been one of my favorite things I have done in my life. You know how cruises are just so fun, when you become a travel planner you get to share those amazing experiences with so many people? And the best part, It’s not as tough to get into as you might think, plus it makes for an awesome work-from-home gig!

How to Become a Royal Caribbean or Any Kind of Travel Agent

I wanted to specialize in Royal Caribbean Cruises, but you can specialize in anything. The key is, you gotta love the product ??. You don’t need to be a walking encyclopedia of every cruise or destination, but having a solid grasp of the fun around sailing on a Royal Caribbean ship (if that was your focus) and whether you have been one just one sailing a bunch or perhaps you just have scoured the internet and can’t wait to go on one, you have to have genuine excitement about Royal Caribbean’s offerings? That’s the secret sauce that’ll make your clients want to set sail and book with you.

Do you Just Book Royal Caribbean?

No, I book all sorts of vacations, I just started with a focus on Royal Caribbean. You can book every major cruise line, hotels, Disney and more. It does depend on the agency you work with, but the world is your oyster (I’ve never really loved that expression ????)


Next, let’s talk tech. If you can book your own vacations online without breaking a sweat, you’re already halfway there. Royal Caribbean, Carnival and Disney booking systems are pretty user-friendly, and hey, if you can manage your own itinerary and chat with clients via email or text, you’re golden. Although I love to jump on a call.

Sales Experience

Swim & Tonic- Deck 16 Midship Portside
Icon of the Seas – Royal Caribbean International

Last but definitely not least, you’ve don’t have to be a smooth talker, the more important part is being able to listen to your clients’ needs, getting pumped up about planning their dream vacations, and being there when they need you? Yup, those are the traits that’ll set you apart as a top-notch travel agent.

How I got started?

Step 1: Find the Right Agency – Now, this is where the “fun” begins (honestly, it wasn’t that fun, but I am going to try to save you the headache).

Look for an agency that’s officially recognized by some of your favorite cruise lines as a seller of travel.

Here’s how the agency hunt went down:

  • I reached out to a bunch of agencies, like 34 of them!
  • But you know what? Most of them didn’t even bother replying. (Rude, right?)
  • Some asked about my experience or if I had a massive client base already.
  • Others wanted me to prove that I could book a ton of vacations before they’d even consider me.
  • And then there were a few who politely said they weren’t hiring. At least they had the decency to respond, I guess?

In the end, I ended up at an agency my friend recommended to me (I should have asked her sooner) Best Day Ever Vacations. They’re all about welcoming newcomers to the travel industry and the program is designed just for beginners.

Signing up Process

Central Park – Deck 8 Midship
Icon of the Seas – Royal Caribbean International

Joining Best Day Ever Vacations was a breeze. No prior experience needed, and everything was done online. They’ve got two membership options:

  • Classic Travel Agent Membership: Perfect for those who want to start small, booking cruises for friends and family while making some extra cash.
  • Fast Track Membership: If you’re like me and want to dive right in, this program hooks you up with leads from people ready to plan their vacations. It’s like hitting the fast-forward button on building your clientele.

By they way, you can book so many types of destinations, like Disney, Carnival, Norwegian, All Inclusives etc… I just like to focus on Royal Caribbean…….

and the Best Part (and I did not know this when I joined……..), but they are preferred partners with many of the cruise lines so instead of the normal 10% commission rate, many of the cruise lines are 15% and 16% commission

Once you’re in, they’ll give you all the training you need to start booking Royal Caribbean vacations like a pro. And hey, as long as you’ve got that passion for creating unforgettable cruise experiences for families, you’re good to go.


Royal Caribbean debuts its newest ship, Icon of the Seas
The Hideaway and Thrill Island

When I joined Best Day Ever I was given access to Royal Caribbeans, Royal Caribbean University. It is a great program which goes over so much about Royal Caribbean, you really will know so much after taking the course.

In addition, my agency has weekly Webinars from reps from the different suppliers from Royal Caribbean, Disney, Celebrity, Sandals, Carnival and more. These are super helpful.

Let’s talk perks:

  • As a Travel Agent, you not only get to craft dream vacations for your clients but also score some sweet discounts on Royal Caribbean cruises, Carnival Cruises, Sandals, Beaches, you name it!
  • I’m talking significant markdowns on cruise fares, special rates on hotel stays before and after the cruise, and exclusive access to onboard goodies and experiences.

And here’s the cherry on top: Familiarization trips, or fam trips, are like the icing on the cake. Royal Caribbean dishes out these trips to travel agencies based on how well they’re doing. You get to check out the ships, dive into immersive experiences, and chill out in luxurious hotels. Cruise Experts Travel scores a bunch of these fam trips, and I’m already counting down the days until my first one next year!

How Much Can You Make?

But hey, let’s get down to brass tacks: How much can you actually make as a Royal Caribbean Travel Agent?

Well, here’s the scoop:

  • Typically, agencies get around a 10% commission on vacation packages before taxes. With Royal Caribbean, it’s pretty much the same deal except……. and here is another thing I love about this agency, they get 15% because they book so many Royal Caribbean Vacations. This commission then gets split with the agent
  • Here’s what I REALLY love about Best Day Ever: They start new agents off with a whopping 70% commission rate for any booking you bring to the company! That means if you score a $500 commission, you’re pocketing $350.
  • Let’s crunch some numbers: Say you book an average Royal Caribbean cruise for a family of four, costing around $6,320. With that 14% commission and a 70% cut, you’re looking at a sweet $619.36 in your pocket for just one booking.
  • My best booking was a group of 8 staterooms (not even on a fancy ship) and my commission was just over $3,800.00
  • Payments are usually done through PayPal or direct deposit. Even if you book just one vacation package a month, you’re looking at anywhere from $200 to $500. But if you snag a Royal Caribbean suite booking, you could easily rake in $700-$1,000, especially since those suites can cost a pretty penny.

So, get ready to set sail on a rewarding journey as a Royal Caribbean Travel Agent and help families create memories that’ll last a lifetime!

How to Get Clients!

But wait, how do you actually reel in those clients?

  • Start by spreading the word to your friends and family. They’ll be your first customers, no doubt.
  • Get involved in local groups like church gatherings or school events. Word of mouth is a powerful thing!
  • Social media is your best friend. Share travel tips, highlight killer deals, and show off some success stories from your clients.
  • Oh, and don’t forget to get your business registered with Google My Business. That way, when folks in your area search for Royal Caribbean Travel Agents, you’ll be right there at the top.
  • Feeling a bit overwhelmed? Best Day Ever’s Fast Track program hooks you up with leads, making it a breeze to fill up your client roster. Trust me, it’s a game-changer!


  • Well, it depends on the agency. Some have quotas you need to hit, while others don’t really care as long as you’re bringing in some business.
  • Best Day Ever does not have any quotas. Whether you book a little or a lot, you’re still considered part of the team and have access to getting a CLIA card

How to Pick the perfect Agency for you?

Clearly, I love the agency I am at, but it doesn’t mean that might be the perfect fit for you. I DO NOT make any special bonus or perk (zero, zip, zilch) if you sign up with Best Day Ever Vacations if you sign up, I just like to share my experience.

So, how do you pick the perfect agency?

  • Look for one that gives you killer training
  • One that doesn’t gouge you with crazy fees
  • One that lets you book a wide variety of trips with different supplier and lets you book all sorts of cruises.

And there you have it! Becoming a Travel Agent is all about loving cruises, chatting up folks, and having a blast planning vacations and of course making some waves!

Emily Myers
Latest posts by Emily Myers (see all)

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