SEATTLE — Host agency representatives speaking Monday at Travel Weekly's CruiseWorld & Home Based Agent Show told attendees to focus more on a host’s total offerings and less on its commission structure.
“Look at the overall numbers but look at everything,” said Scott Koepf, vice president of sales for Avoya Travel, noting that Avoya offers members a lead-generation program that helps agents build their business. “It’s not about the split, it’s about how much you make at the end of the week. That’s the key.”
Vicky Garcia, senior vice president of sales for Cruise Planners/American Express, said that Cruise Planners offers value to agents by charging little or nothing for its many training, marketing and technology tools.
“We keep it simple. We try not to charge for a lot of programs,” she said. “We don't want to nickel and dime.”
Nexion President Jackie Friedman told agents that when they evaluate a commission split, they should expect to get what they pay for in terms of support from the host.
“The amount you keep should go hand in hand with the amount of support on the day-to-day side that you require,” she said.
Friedman added that agents should look at each host’s programs and determine which ones would actually benefit them.
“We all offer great programs,” she said. “One of the challenges we have from time to time is getting our affiliate agencies to engage with those programs. Whatever you select, make sure you know what they offer and how it can help you. Engage with what we have to offer.”
Follow Johanna Jainchill on Twitter @jjainchilltw.