How to Become a Travel Agent in Mississippi

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How to Become a Travel Agent in Mississippi

The travel, tourism, and hospitality industry make up one of the largest industries in the world.

Many feel that they can research, plan and book their travel, but travel agents are much needed especially when planning group and corporate travel.

With more travel options than ever, it can be confusing for many individuals, looking for the best destinations at the best price.

Those that use popular sites like expedia.com also find that not all airlines are listed.

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Smaller, new, or boutique airlines need to be booked directly on their websites.

This can be a painstaking and lengthy process.

More than ever, more people are going back to using travel agents to plan their next dream vacation, or for their corporate travel needs.

Travel Agent Duties and Responsibilities in Mississippi

Travel agents have a lot of responsibility.

They help individuals and businesses research, plan, and book airline or train travel, cruises, hotels, transportation, and transfers.

In many cases, they are asked to book tours and events at the passengers’ destinations.

In the corporate arena, they often help book conference rooms, blocks of rooms and may even consult on restaurants and free time events.

According to indeed.com, here are just some of the responsibilities and duties that travel agents can expect to conduct daily:

  • Research: Research fare and schedule information. Offer advice and suggestions to clients on destinations and things to do.
  • Coordinate travel: Follow up with clients regarding upcoming travel plans. Secure reservations with the individual or corporate point of contact as the trip approaches.
  • Report: Conduct research and then report back to the client with travel options for them to decide on.
  • Documentation: Confirm that the client has all documents in order, including passports and visas if the client is going outside the U.S.
  • Troubleshoot: Travel agents are often asked to change reservations when business travel changes. They also will help passengers get to their destinations when weather, natural disasters, or flight cancellations leave them stranded away from home.
  • Share: Travel agents go out of their way to provide all the information possible so the traveler knows what to expect. This may include travel itineraries, brochures, local restaurant guides, specific customs, and other information that is important for a great trip.

Do Travel Agents Require a License in the State of Mississippi?

Becoming a travel agent is not as easy as you would expect in the state of Mississippi.

Most companies looking for travel agents look for someone that has previous experience in the travel and tourism industry.

In Mississippi, you do not have to have a license to become a travel agent, but you will need to have a business license and Tax ID number, so the IRS can track income.

No formal classes are required to become a travel agent in Mississippi.

Though many people that wish to pursue a career in a travel agency will take a variety of classes at local and online colleges.

Local Travel Agent Programs in Mississippi

Even though a formal travel agent program is not required in the state of Mississippi, there are several area schools that those wishing to pursue a career in travel may wish to attend:

  • Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College
  • The University of South Alabama Center for Continuing Education and Conference Services
  • Northshore Technical Community College

There are also many online options available, including:

In these classes, prospective travel agents will learn:

  • Everything about the travel industry.
  • About booking airline and ground transportation, hotels and resorts, cruises, tours, specialty travel, etc.
  • Some of the most desirable international and domestic travel destinations.
  • How to market yourself as a skilled travel professional.
  • The best customer services tools, even when dealing with tough clients.

After the program is completed, the student will be ready to take the Travel Agent Proficiency (TAP) test, offered by the Travel Institute.

How Much Does it Cost to Attend a Travel Agent Program in Mississippi?

Many online programs are free of charge.

Those attending a college or a more formal program that issues certification are usually paid for and may cost as low as several hundred up to around $2,000, based on the school.

How Much Can a Travel Agent Make?

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, a travel agent can expect to make about $42,320 per year (median).

That equates to $20.36 per hour.

Those that advertise or specialize in local area events and market themselves may make even more money.

Annual Salary Range:
$30K
$33K
$39K
10%
50%
90%
Annual Salary by Location:
Location Avg. Annual Salary
Jackson $34,624
Gulfport $34,014
Biloxi $34,285
Hattiesburg $33,801
Greenville $34,389
Meridian $34,289
Tupelo $32,633
Southaven $35,793
Vicksburg $34,275
Pascagoula $34,010

Sources

https://www.travelsafe-abroad.com/travel-agent/mississippi/

https://www.indeed.com/hire/job-description/travel-agent

Frequently Asked Questions

Do people still use travel agents?

Yes!

Nearly 43% of passengers prefer to use travel agents, according to the International Air Transport Association’s Global Passenger Survey.

Can I work from home?

Yes, more travel agents have become independent travel agents and work from anywhere, including from a home office.

Can a travel agent coordinate business travel, events, or group travel?

Travel agents do all sorts of work.

If they work with business people, they will likely work with groups by securing blocks of rooms, negotiating best prices and providing information to help inside travel agents do their job, and lessening their workload.

USA Travel Agent License by State


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