The Travel Professor
Join me on a journey across the broad spectrum of interesting travel topics. We’ll discuss destinations domestic and abroad, some familiar and some off the beaten path. We take a look at suppliers like cruise lines, air carriers and tour operators and find their bargains and special offerings. Got questions? Email

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Getting paid to travel

AJ from Milton asked: “I’ve always loved to travel and was thinking about working in the travel business. What are my career options that would allow me to travel frequently?

Ah getting paid to travel what a pleasant thought! And a real possibility too! The ability for free or reduced rate is one of the perks of this industry. It can also be part of your job responsibilities if you work as a tour manger for a tour operator.

The tour operator basically assembles the various tour elements thus creating the package tour. They market their trips, sell space, handle the flow of money and paper then conduct the tours.

Conducting the tour is the travel phase and many companies employ tour managers. These travel professionals accompany the travelers, manage the day to day operations of the journey and really bring the tour to life. It can mean long hours, plenty of problem solving and personal interactions. However working as a tour manager can really take you places and can be a rewarding career.

Local companies like AAA, National Travel and Fellowship Tours conduct group tours so these may be places to start gaining experience. I’d also suggest obtaining additional training and plenty of destination knowledge. Ohio University Southern Campus in Ironton offers
on-line classes in group tour leadership and design so check these courses out.

AJ hopefully I answered your questions. If not ask away at or call me at 800.626.0513 ext. 4559.

Happy travels!