- Welcome Kelly! Everyone knows you as the Disney Guru, but today we’re talking about your job as a travel specialist. First, tell us all little about yourself for those meeting you for the first time.
- What inspired you to become a travel specialist?
When , I started blogging last year being a Travel Agent was just a dream that I thought would never come true. After seeing how much of a positive impact the entire Disney community has had on my life I decided to try and make it my career. Not only do I see travel planning as a career but Disney Guru is also my career. Our fans and followers mean the world to me. I am forever grateful that all of you have given me the opportunity to live out my dream.
- Describe the process and requirements for becoming a certified travel specialist?
- What start up costs are involved?
For the agency that I am working with there are not any start up costs involved in becoming an agent. You just need to be willing to work.
- Are there any personality traits you feel would benefit someone who is thinking about becoming a travel specialist?
I believe that blogging for almost a year before I began has helped tremendously. Outgoing and friendly personalities will thrive in this business for sure because clients want you to be their Disney friend. You also have to be willing to pay close attention to detail as every client is different. Last but not least, you have to be organized.
- I am sure there are a lot of people who think it would be so much fun to become a travel specialist, but it’s really a lot of work. Please describe what would be involved start to finish for a client.
It is true that being a Disney Travel Agent is a dream but with any business there is work involved. You have to be ready to work 24 hours per day. People take their Disney trips very seriously and they want to make sure that the details are perfect…as they should be. From the time you make contact with the client until after they travel you have to be available to answer questions, book their ADR’s (which I do and set my alarm at 5 AM 180 days out…it is my favorite part of the job), itinerary plan, modify reservations when there are better deals and more. In addition to those things you have to be ready to add a little extra magic to your client’s vacation. We like to send our clients extra special emails packed with Disney magic. ;0)
- With so many different clients and Disney packages, how do you keep it all organized?
Well, this part can be a challenge because when you are working from home you may think that you can just wing it in the office area. Well, needless to say I am on my way to get a desk and set up my office tomorrow. I have to have a space to spread out and call my own. As far as organization, I have a file cabinet that is dedicated to my clients. In the file cabinet I have three drawers each one is dedicated to a year, 2011, 2012, 2013. Within each cabinet is a file for each month and within each month are files labeled a-z. I file the clients by travel date so that I can monitor their reservations by month and deal. I am always trying to get the best deal possible for my clients. I know having a paper trail is a bit old fashioned so I do keep some info on my computer too but I like to be able to pull a file and review it.
Last, I have an on the go file with client names and contact numbers. This is in my purse with all reservation numbers and Disney phone numbers…you never know when someone may need help when I am not at home.
- What is your #1 “must do” each and every Disney trip?
I have to go on Space Mountain…the year it was closed for refurbishment I just did not feel as accomplished….haha. Number 2 is, we have to eat at Sci-Fi Dine In…we just have to.
- Do you have a Disney Vacation tip you would like to share with our readers?
- Anything you would like to add?