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In San Diego, Orange and Imperial Counties

Educational Consumer Tips

Independent Travel Agents

Author: Better Business Bureau
Published:

Throughout the country, companies or individuals have been conducting seminars which are marketed as tips on drastically reducing travel expenses. In many cases, the BBB has found that these seminars are actually offering a business opportunity to become an independent travel agent. Many consumers who have signed up for these opportunities have discovered that in order to be eligible for any discounts, they must sell a significant amount of travel business on their own.

The BBB advises consumers who are considering participation in this type of business opportunity to consider the actual benefit in proportion to the time, effort and initial investment involved, and to research the travel industry from all angles, paying particular attention to the possibility that many others in your area who are attending the seminar, will also perhaps be trying to market the same services to the public. It might also be wise to consider how airlines could honor vast numbers of reduced fares and who is actually paying the difference, and to request evidence of any earning claims that the seminars promise to participants in these programs.

It is also prudent to request the names of several participants in the program that you can speak to, so that you can determine how long it takes to be successful, and what if any problems these participants have run into. One other area you may wish to explore is whether or not any up-front fees that are requested by the company promoting this concept, are refundable, and what you must do in order to cancel any agreement you may make with the company.

The BBB also has a general advice report on Business Opportunities that is also available free upon request. Investigate before you invest.