How To Qualify Travel Clients

How To Qualify Travel Clients

Hi again, Bill Coyle here with more
Travel Agent Tips. In the last video I spoke a little bit about marketing
strategies that you can use to find clients, if you haven’t watched that one
make sure you check it out because it leads into today’s topic qualifying
clients. As a travel agent, your goal is to continually impress your clients with
the level of customer service you provide and it all starts with creating
a good first impression and listening. I can’t tell you how important listening
is. It helps you, it really does help you, because once you start to listen your
clients and the passion that they have about their trip and the needs and the
desires that they want, it’s gonna help you make a better decision for them and
provide them with a much better itinerary. Active listening, taking notes,
and properly qualifying your clients before making any travel recommendations
can be the difference between creating a lasting relationship or losing that
client before you even begin. Qualifying clients involves asking those right
questions to help you get to know your clients. Their past vacations, their likes,
their dislikes, and what their expectations are. It makes people feel
more engaged and involved in the planning process.
It also helps differentiate you from those online booking sites that make the
transaction without any personal interaction or customer service.
You’re probably thinking, I know what I need to do but where do I start?
Don’t skip over the basics people. Start with the most obvious question of
finding out their name, and be sure to pronounce it correctly and spell it right. You’ll also want to know how they found you. That is so critical. That just
means so much to us when we know how they found us. Was it a referral? Was it
another client? Did they see an ad? Did they see a Facebook post? what is it that— what got them to you? Once you have their permission to continue asking
questions, you should focus your efforts on finding out the five D’s: dates,
duration, destination, desires, and dollars. Dates is when your clients can travel.
Sometimes they tell you that they want to travel during the month of June, but
they can’t travel every day, so really narrow that down to those dates.
Duration is how many nights can they be away. Destination is where do they want to go,
and desires is what they’re looking for throughout the entire travel experience.
Dollars is pretty obvious, what’s their budget look like? Can they
afford this vacation? You can also ask, what research have you done? Have you
been on the Internet? What do you know about this trip, and how do they usually
travel is very important as well. Those answers will tell you how active
their vacation search has been and the avenues they’ve already used.
It also gives you a feel for how they’ve traveled in the past. I asked another
travel agent who works here in our office if she had any questions that
she asks in particular in the qualification process. Here’s Roberta
to share a few of her must ask questions. [ROBERTA OFF- CAMERA] Hi Bill!
[BILL] Hey Roberta, thanks for joining us. Thanks so much for being here, I know
we’re very fortunate to work together every day, but I don’t always hear
some of the key factors that you guys use as agents to set you apart from the
online agencies that are big qualification questions, like, what are
those key factors that you guys speak about? [ROBERTA] Okay, so when I’m working with my
clients, I usually ask if their budget includes travel insurance. I also always
make it a point to ask them if they have any food food allergies. If they do, then
I usually try to call the hotel or cruise line just to inform them of their
food allergy. [BILL] Awesome. See, that’s huge customer service. You don’t get that when
you book online, so being a travel agent who’s very active in that part of
their trip is huge. And with travel insurance, I’m sure that a lot of people
say, “oh my gosh, I don’t think I need the travel insurance,” and you’re saying… [ROBERTA] Yeah,
they should definitely get the travel insurance. We try to advise them to get
them because you never know what could happen. So, it’s a good idea to always get
travel protection. [BILL] Yeah, there’s so many factors nowadays that go on that people don’t expect to happen
and having that insurance gives them that added value, that
added part of their trip, that gives them security. [ROBERTA] It’s just something to have a
protection, to protect their investment. [BILL] Yes, absolutely. Well, thanks a
lot Roberta. I appreciate you being here today, and thanks so much for your
insight. [ROBERTA] Thanks Bill, for having me. [BILL] Sure. As you can see, asking a combination of
closed-ended, open-ended, and feedback questions, will help the conversation
flow naturally and get you the information you need. These are the
things that help us do our job better. You don’t want to sound like it’s an
interrogation, so feel free to add in your own comments as you go. Just be sure
to avoid overwhelming them by asking them too many questions or using
industry terms that they may not understand. As travel agents, we think
everyone understands those industry terms and they don’t, consumers don’t
know what those mean! Avoid those. Once you have identified their five Ds, your
job as a travel agent really starts to kick in. It’s now time for you to use all
those skills and those resources available so that you can make the right
recommendation for your clients trip. That’s the most exciting part for me, and
I put it out there and I know that it’s best for them. Let us know your comments
below if you find these tips helpful and be sure to like and subscribe for even
more videos. If there’s any travel agent topics or questions that you were
curious about, let us know and I’ll be sure to answer those questions in future
videos. Until then, I’ll see you next time.


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