Outside Agents Vs. InteleTravel: The Right Travel Agency

Travel agents and agencies come in many shapes and sizes these days. While the internet has made booking travel yourself easier than ever, working with a professional travel advisor still has its advantages. Two popular options for travelers are booking with an outside travel agent or joining a host agency like InteleTravel.

Below we’ll explore the pros and cons of each to help you decide which is better for your needs.

A Brief Comparison Table

FactorOutside AgentsInteleTravel
CostNo fees for clients$499 signup fee, $25+ monthly fees for agents
TrainingSelf-guidedStructured programs and certifications
SupportNone providedTraining webinars, mentors, private Facebook groups
TechnologyAgents choose ownBranded booking site and back-end for agents
CommissionsEarn full commissionsEarn 70-80% commission splits
IncentivesSet your own contestsFam trips, rewards programs
BrandingBuild own recognitionTurnkey materials and national marketing

Overview Of Outside Agents And InteleTravel

First, what exactly are outside agents and InteleTravel?

Outside Agents
Outside Agents

Outside agents are self-employed travel agents who work independently. They do not belong to a host agency or franchise. Outside agents build their own client base and set their own rules. They research options for clients, book reservations, suggest activities, and more. Outside agents earn commissions from travel suppliers when they make bookings.

InteleTravel, on the other hand, is a host agency. Travel advisors who join InteleTravel sign up as independent contractors. InteleTravel provides training, support, technology, and other resources to members.

However, members are responsible for finding their own clients and building relationships. InteleTravel agents earn commissions by booking travel and can participate in incentive contests and familiarization trips.

Major Differences Between The Two Models

There are a few key differences between working as an outside agent versus joining InteleTravel:

  • Cost and fees: Outside agents cover all their own overhead with no monthly or annual fees. InteleTravel members pay a one-time signup fee of $499 and monthly fees starting at $25 per month.
  • Training and support: Outside agents research everything on their own. InteleTravel offers training programs, marketing materials, and ongoing support.
  • Technology: Outside agents choose their own booking platforms and tools. InteleTravel provides a consumer-facing booking website and back-end agent portal.
  • Commission splits: Outside agents earn full commissioned on bookings. InteleTravel agents receive 70-80% commission splits on bookings.
  • Incentives: Outside agents set their own rewards and contests. InteleTravel offers incentive trips and rewards programs.
  • Branding: Outside agents must build name recognition from scratch. InteleTravel provides branding, marketing materials, and national advertising.

As you can see, the two models offer very different experiences for agents. Outside agents have full autonomy but also take on more responsibility. InteleTravel takes care of many details for members but reduces earnings on bookings.

Also Read: Comparison Between Med Travelers And Club Staffing.

Pros Of Working With Outside Agents

Booking with an outside travel agent has some unique advantages:

  • Industry expertise: Many outside agents specialize in niche markets like cruises or adventure travel. Their expertise can uncover options you might miss.
  • Time savings: A good agent handles the details, saving you research time. They’ll compare options, find deals, and monitor prices.
  • Added touches: Outside agents may offer personalized extras like welcome gifts, ground transportation, or excursions.
  • Advocacy: In case of cancellations, delays, or issues, an outside agent can act as your representative. They have relationships with suppliers.
  • No fees: You don’t pay any fees to book with an outside agent. Their commissions come from suppliers.

The hands-on, customized approach of outside agents appeals to many travelers. But it’s crucial to vet agents carefully as quality can vary.

Pros Of Joining InteleTravel

Signing up with InteleTravel can also be attractive to new and experienced agents alike. Benefits include:

  • Training: InteleTravel provides training programs and certifications in tourism, cruises, tours, customer service, and more.
  • Support: New advisors have access to mentors, weekly training webinars, private Facebook groups, and marketing tutorials.
  • Technology: InteleTravel handles all the technology needs from consumer booking engines to back-end systems.
  • Low startup costs: The InteleTravel signup and monthly fees are reasonable for a hosted platform.
  • Rewards: InteleTravel offers familiarization trips, contests, bonus commissions, and incentive programs.
  • Lead generation: InteleTravel provides branded materials and national marketing efforts to drive customers.

For those seeking structure, guidance, and built-in technology, InteleTravel makes getting started straightforward. But keep commission splits in mind when evaluating earnings potential.

Also Read: Comparison Between Klook And Kkday.

Cons Of Working With Outside Agents

Outside agents have distinct advantages, but there are a few potential drawbacks to note as well:

  • Vetting required: Outside agents are all independent, so you must thoroughly vet their qualifications and specialties.
  • No support system: Outside agents offer personalized service but lack a larger support framework.
  • Booking limitations: Some outside agents use consumer websites lacking robust back-end systems. This can limit booking options and convenience.
  • No training programs: You’re relying purely on their existing knowledge. New and part-time agents may have skill gaps.
  • No consumer awareness: Independent agents typically have low consumer recognition and rely on referrals.

While outside agents offer high-touch, customized services, the lack of brand standards requires careful vetting. Quality, experience, and professionalism can vary significantly.

Cons Of Joining InteleTravel

Before signing up with InteleTravel, weigh a few potential downsides:

  • Commission splits: Earnings on bookings are 20-30% lower than what outside agents earn.
  • Monthly fees: Ongoing monthly fees take a bite out of earnings, unlike independent agents.
  • No exclusivity: InteleTravel agents don’t have exclusive territories and can compete for clients.
  • More legwork: While InteleTravel provides support, agents must still do the work of finding clients and marketing themselves.
  • Supplier restrictions: Some suppliers won’t pay commissions to InteleTravel advisors due to company size.
  • Capped rewards: Incentive programs often have caps limiting earning potential for top agents.

While InteleTravel makes getting started easier and more affordable, commission splits and fees impact long-term profit potential. Members must hustle to build their client base and earnings.

Also Read: Comparison Between Outside Agents And KHM Travel Group.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Which travel agency host is the best?

There are a few major hosts worth considering beyond InteleTravel. These include:
Avoya Travel: Caters to independent contractors with high commission splits up to 100%. Significant onboarding and technology fees.
Cruise Planners: Popular for cruise specialists. Provides training and marketing materials. Commission splits start around 70%.
Dream Vacations: Specializes in cruises, tours, resorts. Commission splits of 80% plus incentive programs.
Travel Planners International: Hosts agents across niches. Commission splits up to 80% and a range of services.
The “best” host depends on your niche, experience level, and earnings goals. Shop around and compare commission structures closely.

Is InteleTravel a good company to work for?

InteleTravel gets mixed reviews from current and past advisors. On the plus side, they provide solid training programs, marketing materials, and technology solutions at a reasonable price. This helps new agents build skills and get started. However, the ongoing fees, commission splits, and work required to find and retain clients are challenging long term for some agents. It can work well for part-time advisors but may lack upside potential compared to other hosts.

Is it cheaper to book through a travel agent?

Not always. Travel agents earn commissions from suppliers, not extra fees from travelers. You won’t pay more to book through an agent versus yourself. The agent’s commission comes out of the supplier’s revenues. In some cases, agents can access special rates, upgrades, or packaged deals that may save you money compared to booking directly. But overall pricing is usually a wash. The agent’s expertise is more valuable than potential cost savings.

What type of agency is InteleTravel?

InteleTravel is considered a multi-level marketing (MLM) style host agency. Sales reps can earn commissions not only from their own bookings but also from recruiting new members and building a downline team. While not a “pyramid scheme” per se, MLMs like InteleTravel encourage bringing on new members over solely focusing on selling travel. This turns off some experienced agents who prefer a more traditional agency structure focused on bookings not recruitment.

Here is a video of Outside Agents!


At the end of the day, there are good and bad outside agents, as well as successful and unsuccessful InteleTravel members. Focus on finding an advisor who offers the experience, specialties, and support structure that best fits your needs.

For hands-on customized service, an established outside agent on a referral basis is tough to beat. But for those new to the industry, InteleTravel provides an affordable starting point. Evaluate both models against your personal sales style, niche focuses, and financial goals to determine the optimal path for you.

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