John Hays interview with Steve Witt of The Travel Franchise

Interview with John Hays of Hays Travel

John Hays joined the Travel Franchise at our recent UK Conference as a guest speaker to talk about the travel industry. However we grabbed a few minutes of his time afterwards to talk more about him and his success story.

Homeworking Travel Agency of The Year 2017

For the third year in a row, our travel homeworking business has been voted Homeworking Agency of The Year. A top accolade for a top business. Find out more
Travel Awards for The Travel Franchise

10 Travel Awards in One Week

Sales are a fantastic benchmark of success, however, awards are the ultimate demonstration that you are doing something right. At The Travel Franchise, we are definitely doing something right!

Atul’s Success Story With The Travel Franchise

With no previous travel experience, Atul’s business has flourished over the past 4 years. Learn more about his story as he chats to Paul Harrison.

Ian & Susan’s Success Story With The Travel Franchise

From a very much part-time Travel Consultant to a full-time couple of Travel Consultants. Ian and Susan have seen their business flourish. Learn more about their story as they chat to Paul Harrison.
How to become a millionaire in the travel business

How to make your first million – part two

  Last week we spoke to David about how he started his own company ‘The Travel Snob’ and made his first million of holiday sales off the back of the amazing opportunities the travel industry offers. Today we are talking to David again to expand on how you too can make your first million. David when you started the Travel Snob what did you expect? Did you know it was going to become this successful? I didn’t know what to expect and I had absolutely no idea The Travel Snob was going to be this great. I spent a lot of time getting in touch with friends and family that I know travel to explain what I was doing, it took such a lot of time but now people contact me and ask me to be their travel agent and it’s only been two and a half years! Do you think you are still as enthusiastic now as you were when you first started out? It can be hard to maintain that over a long period of time! I have to say that I think I am even more enthusiastic now. I imagine this is because I have done so much for my customers that as time has progressed we have built up a great rapport. I really enjoy and look forward to speaking to them all. I don’t have days where I am not enthusiastic about my business.how to make your first million What is the most important aspect of your business? Honestly, knowledge and rapport. What is the secret to success? I think again what I said above for the last question. I Know my customers and what they want and don’t want. Because of this I can expand on my knowledge of them because I understand what they enjoy. Even though they may make a suggestion and say ‘oh I’d like to visit X’ I will know if its not right for them, for example they may enjoy dressing up in the evening and that hotel has a really casual vibe. Do you have any tips for anyone who wants to start up a business in travel? Get to know your suppliers and the products they offer so you are knowledgeable on the phone when they talk to people. If oyou don’t do this people will think that they could do it themselves and don’t get the experience of a personal travel consultant. You also need to fully believe that you will get support from the people you know. I was really surprised how many people were encouraging when I started up. How about in another industry? I think that’s the same. You need to be able to fall back on people and rely on them for support and enthusiasm.  Who is your business hero? I don’t really know, I don’t really see myself as a businessperson. David paused and thought for a while. I know it’s really corny but I think I would say Paul Harrison. Mainly because he says it exactly how it is, you cannot a person who is any straighter down the line and he is also an amazing motivator. I really like him. In part this is because when I first spoke to him I just thought of him as a really enthusiastic sales guy and as time passed I realised that yes he is but he has every right to be and he is inspiring.    
how to make your first million

How to make your first million. Part One

Most of us want to make more money and practically everyone I have spoken to dreams of being a millionaire.

It doesn’t have to be a fantasy though, as I found out today when I spoke to David Walker owner of The Travel Snob to find out how he made this a reality. Tell me about yourself. I got the wanderlust bug early on and spent twenty-two years travelling the world visiting one hundred and twelve countries. I moved back to the UK in 2012 into a position as a global HR director for a multinational. It really wasn’t for me though, in fact I would go as far as saying I hated it and so knew it was time for a career change. Golf and travel are both passions of mine so I knew in order to make my own business work I would need to set up a business in one of those industries, sadly though I’m not good enough at golf to make it a career. That left me with travel. In my head I envisaged a ‘computer says no’ travel agent and knew without doubt that was NOT what I wanted to do so the search started on how I should set up my own travel agency.

So what happened next?

I hunted online to find the right franchise for me. The Travel Franchise was without question the best at communication and coming back to me. I spoke to Paul Harrison and although he seemed nice enough I wasn’t quite sure on the phone. When I met him though I thought he was just great, I really liked himhow to make your first million and my mind was made up. I started the training in the February of that year, which was 2014, although I didn’t actually start working until May. The first few months I just sold holidays to friends and family and attended a few networking events and fairs and grew the business from there. My 38 first sales were friends and family and then I received my first referral. In the May to December of 2014 I did 350k of sales, which was a great start.

Other than disliking your job, what made you decide to start working for yourself?

I was bored of the corporate world and didn’t want to have to keep reporting to people, I’m an adult and should be accountable for myself. I was also sick of the commuting which was taking up half my day stuck in a car in the miserable English weather. My working environment was so much nicer from home and I got more done in a day!

Why specifically did you choose the travel franchise?

The money back guarantee was a huge lure I knew I needed to make more than the 36k in the first year so was confident I would get my franchise fee back, which I did! It was also really important to me that I worked with a respected company who were always doing the right thing for their customers, especially as I was selling to my family and friends so thinks like them being ABTA accredited was vital.

Do you think you would have hit your first million without The Travel Franchise?

I’m not sure, that’s a really difficult question to answer, I am naturally an achiever and will make anything work for me but this just all slotted into place. To be entirely honest I don’t think I put that much effort in, it all just kind of happened. It was easy for me.

What would you say to people looking to join ‘the millionaires club?’

Give a great service because it’s all about reputation and repeat business. I don’t advertise all any more, no fairs, networking or paid ads of any description. My business is all made up of repeat customers and referrals. I make sure that I give the very best service every single time, you have to remember –people buy from people.

If you want to be a successful entrepreneur, can you compete against the people already out there?

Yes absolutely. Because like I said earlier people buy from people. In this business your biggest competition is other travel agents and none of them will have your unique personality. There are not many good travel agents out there and I think that the team here is a unique breed. For example I often have customers comment that when they book with me they are not sold everything going, they are only sold only what they need. We don’t want to make money out of people we want to give them that personal experience. 

What was the best piece of advice you were given?

Have a plan. You need to write down a list of set targets so you know what you are shooting for. You must create a strategy as if you don’t then you will not know if you have done well as there is there is nothing to measure it up against. We hope you found this article informative. We will be talking to David again next week to find out more about what he thinks you can do to earn your very first million.      
starting a travel agency franchise in the UK

Starting a travel agency

If you are considering starting a travel agency read on…

This week we spoke to Hannah Alexander, one of our travel consultants. We asked her a few questions and found out why becoming a self-employed travel agent may just be the best thing you can do for your career. Hannah, before you started working with The Travel Franchise did you have experience in the travel industry? I worked in financial services before starting my career in travel. I had always loved visiting new places and spent 13 months on a world tour with my husband before we had children, it just felt like the time was right to try something different. The Travel Franchise appealed to me as I felt it would give me the freedom to work from home and be able to have a career that fitted in with my busy schedule. My husband met a representative from The Travel Franchise at his BNI networking group and I was then put in touch with an existing franchisee. Hearing a first hand success story meant that I felt I didn’t need to shop around. The representatives from other companies I had spoke to had stressed the importance of previous knowledge and experience in the travel industry and that’s where I felt The Travel Franchise was different as it was simply emphasized the training available and the support system in place would ensure I was capable and confident regardless of my previous careers or past experience. So what do you think makes you successful within TTF that wouldn’t have happened elsewhere? The team leaders set up I think. I had a few teething problems initially where if I hadn’t have had their support in place I might have crumbled completely. I would describe my team leader as a person that you can always go to and who is very knowledgeable. I also speak highly of the Millionaire’s Retreat, which I think gave me the encouragement and enthusiasm I needed early on in my career with The Travel Franchise to start seeing results. It is a reality check that makes you consider elements of your business ethics you hadn’t perhaps considered before. It helped being in a room with other people who you knew had achieved using exactly the same process, you could learn from them – it made me think if they could do it, why couldn’t I? What do you think is your greatest achievement so far? Dealing with my most difficult customer yet; my sister! Being able to book her trip to Disney for next year was really rewarding. It took 4 days of phone calls to arrange but a large booking to Florida and a happy sister was worth it! How do you make working from home work for you? I tend to work evenings and weekends so that it slots around looking after the children. I’m a big list writer – any enquiries are my priority. I have designed my own booking checklist which works to ensure that my business runs as smooth as possible. What advice would you give to others looking to franchise? Don’t expect it to be a walk in the park! Be prepared to work hard and take your learning in to your own hands. You have the support at The Travel Franchise to be able to do this successfully.  
Norma-travel-agency-franchise

Making A Successful Travel Agency Franchise

See how Norma made a five-figure travel agency franchise. Norma shares her story on making a successful franchisee business with The Travel Franchise