Mum of three, Cath, hated working in finance but now has her dream job as a Not Just Travel homeworking travel agent.
“I love it. I wish I’d done it earlier,” says Cath who says it’s amazing to get paid for something she enjoys doing.
“I don’t wake up on a Monday and go ugh, I’ve got to get ready for work.”
Cath says she enjoys looking at amazing places around the world, and helping people have a fantastic holiday
“I really feel like I’m earning money but not working. If you like travel, enjoy talking to people, and helping them too, it’s a great job. Plus you get to travel as well.”
Read on to find out how Catherine:
- Is successful despite never working in travel before
- Can fit work around her kids
- Now frequently travels and plans family holidays
- Is on target to get her franchise fee refunded
Cath had worked in many different roles from running art galleries to selling CCTV, before working in finance, which she hated. Then one day she fell into travel when she met someone at Not Just Travel, the customer-facing brand of The Travel Franchise.
She chatted with co-founder Paul and immediately signed up in December 2021.
Homeworking flexibility was a major attraction for Cath who has three children aged 24, 14 and eight.
“The job works around my family which is brilliant. I drop kids off, come home, crack on with enquiries, go pick them up, and can watch school plays etc if I want to, making up the time in the evening if I want to.”
Cath had never worked in travel before but said the initial intensive induction training gave her all the tools she needed to launch an agency in under a week.
“The virtual training was brilliant and really good fun. We had support right from the beginning. There was always someone there if I needed help or advice.”
Cath says she couldn’t have done it without The Travel Franchise.
“I definitely could not do this on my own. NJT head office do all the paperwork and payment side of things… and provide the marketing and visuals too… The support is fantastic.”
Like most new travel consultants, Cath was concerned she would not find customers in the beginning as she felt she didn’t have a huge reach of friends and family, but using networking groups, Facebook – and wearing her NJT hoody on school runs – has helped.
She’s now preparing to launch a pop-up shop in a local market and coffee shop. And she tells everyone what she does – her last booking came through her decorator!
“I’m now making a good portfolio of customers who are coming back to me time and time again.”
While she’s had the odd big booking for £17k and £26k, for Cath, it’s about earning an income and having job satisfaction.
“I like talking and helping people, it’s rewarding. I take the stress out of hunting for a holiday and try to make the entire process as simple as possible.
“It’s lovely when clients get back from holiday and tell me what a great time they’ve had, and if it doesn’t go well, they’ve got me to call.”
As her customer base has increased, so has her income through commission.
“I’ve surprised myself. There’s times I’ve thought I’ve not been doing that well, but when I look at my percentages I think, wow, I’m doing ok.”
It means she’s now on course to get the Money-Back Challenge – The Travel Franchise is the only travel franchise that will refund your franchise fee if you sell a certain amount of holidays in a set time period.
“My target is on a piece of paper in front of me and I cross it off after every booking,” says Cath.
“Achieving the Money-Back Challenge would be amazing because I took out a bank loan to pay for some of the franchise fee, so I could clear that debt and take my family away on a dream holiday to Elephant Hills in Thailand.”
One of the best perks of her new job as a homeworking travel consultant is the travel opportunities.
“I went on a week’s river cruise when a friend who I trained with called to say she was on a cruise but an agent had dropped out. She rang me and asked if I could pack my bags and fly out the next morning to join the ship which I did.”
Cath also enjoyed a free FAM (familiarisation) trip to Ibiza. She stayed at Palladium’s five-star TRS Ibiza all-inclusive, adult-only hotel for a weekend.
She also signed up to NJT’s year-long Cruise Mastery Programme. Which included a week’s cruise onboard Norwegian Cruise Line’s Norwegian Prima.
“The Cruise Mastery includes lots of webinars to work through, but I can do it in my own time which is nice and I already feel more confident and qualified to sell cruises.”