KHM Travel Agent Spotlight: Tracy Waugh
Written by: Amanda on May 06, 2015
Tracy Waugh of Choose Your Adventure Travel knows that the secret to success is not really a secret: it takes hard work, and knowing your clients! She has been a travel agent with KHM Travel Group for four years, and has been a member of the Pinnacle Elite group for more than two.
Like many new travel agents, she joined because she saw an opportunity to earn income doing something she already loved: planning trips for friends and family. Her husband brought up the idea of becoming a travel agent.
Although she had plenty of experience researching and learning about new destinations, her biggest challenge was actually thinking of herself as a travel professional.
“My biggest challenge was actually saying the words ‘I am a travel agent. I own a travel agency,’” says Tracy. “I know that sounds weird but being home-based and with no prior training it was difficult for me to say the words.”
She bolstered her confidence by attending two Destination Success living training events in 2012. The first one was shortly after she participated in her first FAM trip with KHM Travel.
“Those 2 events were the single most important thing I did for my business. Why? Because they not only gave me knowledge but they made me BELIEVE I could do this,” Tracy says.
Meeting other agents at Destination Success and on the FAM trip gave Tracy the sense that she wasn’t alone, and that she was part of a community of travel agents just like her. Attending these events also had the unexpected effect of validating her career, both in her eyes and in the eyes of her potential clients.
“People around me noticed what I was doing,” says Tracy. “They saw that I was at a conference for travel agents. They saw that I was doing travel agent things. They started to see me in their mind as a travel agent. So when they wanted to travel they started calling me to help them.”
And when clients do call Tracy, she always makes herself available to them. It’s one of the ways she ensures travelers book with her over the competition — simply by responding to their requests sooner!
While she primarily relies on her spectacular service to earn referrals, her most valuable marketing tool is the sales email feature through VAX.
“I don’t always book there but I always start there. It makes presenting options to clients so much easier and very professional.”
Tracy can’t stress enough how important education is for new agents. Without the knowledge to successfully match a client up with their ideal vacation, and know how to book that vacation, it won’t matter how much marketing your agency does. KHM Travel’s online training modules and live training sessions are both valuable resources for both new and experienced agents.
“If…you don’t know the answers you will have left them with the impression that you really don’t know what you’re doing and it will be hard to change that impression,” Tracy says. “Always keep learning.”
If you’d like to learn more about starting a fun, rewarding career as a travel agent, fill out the form on the right of the screen or call 1-888-611-1220 to receive our free start-up packet.