TORONTO — The news reports coming in from Grand Bahama and the Abaco Islands are heartbreaking, and the images even more so.
A recent nationwide survey of home based agents funded by The Travel Agent Next Door and conducted by an independent research company shows that the majority of home-based agents are earning more than they did working in a bricks-and-mortar agency.
No doubt this is a major contributing factor to the growth of the home-based retail travel industry here in Canada, following the trend in other markets including the UK and the U.S. According to the survey an estimated 37% of travel agents in Canada are now independent, home-based contractors.
A significant 61% of agents reported that they earned 10% – 30% more than in the past working at a bricks-and-mortar location, and 23.5% said they are earning 30%+.
The second annual independent nationwide survey of Canadian hosted travel agents, conducted in January 2018, tripled in response size, making the results much more meaningful than the previous year.
The survey results also show that 85% of home-based agents have the opportunity to earn 50% or more of the available commission and 47% said they can earn 75% or more of the available commission.
The majority of home-based agents surveyed, 72.6%, said they earn a greater share of commission as a home-based agent compared to working in a travel agency.
When asked to rate their current compensation package with their host agency, 73.7% said they were ‘mostly to 100% satisfied’, and 25.4% said they were 100% satisfied with their compensation.
The survey also explored the costs to agents to join host agencies, beyond the monthly or annual fees. Most agents are getting most services covered by their base fee.
The survey also asked agents about the monthly website fee they pay to their host agency. About eight out of 10 (79%) of agents who responded to this question said they don’t pay a monthly fee for their website.
When asked if they pay a monthly marketing fee to their host agency, 82% of agents who responded to this question said they do not pay an additional marketing fee to their host agent because it is included in their monthly fee.
The survey also asked the question: ‘What is the invoicing fee you pay to your host agency?’ More than 85% of the agents who responded to this question do not pay an invoicing fee to their host agency.