Travel advisor working at a laptop. (photo via JLco – Julia Amaral /iStock / Getty Images Plus)
The Host Agency Reviews website has published its Hosted Travel Advisor 2022 Report, asking over 1,100 hosted travel advisors about their operations, travel advisor income, fees, host agency relationships and more to find out the biggest travel advisor trends of the year.
Hosted travel advisors are often independent travel advisors who partner with a host agency to provide them with resources like preferred partnerships with suppliers, marketing resources, website management and leads.
Host agencies are incredibly popular among travel advisors, and especially so for new advisors this year. Around 35 percent of respondents who belonged to host agencies had zero to two years’ worth of experience. About 29 percent of travel advisors, regardless of their experience, had switched to the hosted model at some point during their career.
Average annual sales for hosted advisors in 2021 was $312,170 for experienced advisors and $43,135 for new advisors. While a disparity is to be expected due to experience level, both new and seasoned advisors saw a 40 to 60 percent decrease in ordinary sales when compared to pre-pandemic times in 2021, so while these numbers are accurate, they are not indicative of a healthy year for the travel industry.
Around 49 percent of travel advisors are now charging some type of fee for their services. Nine percent were charging consultation fees and 21 percent were charging service fees; the other 19 percent charged their clients both. This number has been getting larger over the years. Fees accounted for about 30 percent of an advisor’s income in 2021.
New advisors are less likely to charge fees compared with their more experienced peers (40 percent versus 58 percent), though they are more open to doing so in the future than experienced travel advisors.
New hosted travel advisors, those with fewer than three years’ experience, comprised about 20 percent of respondents. Overwhelmingly they identify as women (81 percent) and as caucasian (76 percent), with a median age of 50.
Seasoned travel advisors identify themselves similarly: as women (80 percent) and as caucasian (79 percent), though their median age is 58.
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