TORONTO — The news reports coming in from Grand Bahama and the Abaco Islands are heartbreaking, and the images even more so.
A recent survey of home-based travel agents produced some surprising results. Here is Amanda Rauh of Travel By Amanda, hosted by The Travel Agent Next Door, with her response to the survey results.
SURVEY SAYS: Over 50% became home-based in last 5 years
Rauh: “After the birth of my last child I didn’t want to go back to an office full-time. He just turned five!”
SURVEY SAYS: Over 60% were experienced agents before going home-based
Rauh: “I started as an agent in 1999 and have worked in a variety of positions from agent to manager. While I love the offices that I have worked in, the choice to go home-based was based on my own desire to balance my family life and make more money!”
SURVEY SAYS: 92% said they have a better work-life balance since becoming a hosted agent
Rauh: “My work/life balance has been better as I set my hours and boundaries with my clients. I am upfront with clients that I work from home and that I am available to them outside of normal office hours – which actually works better for my family and usually theirs!”
SURVEY SAYS: Almost 50% said they were earning more now than before
Rauh: “Yes, this is completely true. My sales alone in the first quarter of this year (2017) are almost exceeding the entire 2016 year. I find people wanting to book with local businesses rather than the big OTAs. It’s also the personal touches and service that I provide that brings happy clients who refer their friends and family.”
SURVEY SAYS: 89% of home-based agents are happier
Rauh: “Being able to have the flexibility of being home-based, the support of a big company and getting paid well, make me happy.”
What advice would you give to agents still working in an office about going home-based?
Rauh: “My advice would be that if you are truly self-motivated, and dedicated to this industry, then take the leap and go for it. The industry is full of fabulous suppliers, sales reps and more. Being home-based doesn’t take any of that away.”