How Do Travel Agents Book Flights?

Travel agents have a few different ways to book flights for their clients. Here’s a look at how they do it.

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Have you ever wondered how travel agents book flights? While it may seem like a mystery, the process is actually quite simple. Here is a step-by-step guide to help you understand how it works.

First, the agent will input the details of the trip into a computer system. This system will search for flights that meet the criteria specified by the agent. Once the flights have been found, the agent will then select the flight that he or she believes is best for the customer.

After the flight has been selected, the agent will confirm the details of the flight with the customer. This includes the departure and arrival times, as well as any layovers that may be required. Once all of the details have been confirmed, the agent will book the flight and provide confirmation to the customer.

It is important to note that travel agents do not always have access to all of the same flights that are available to customers. In some cases, airlines will only make certain flights available to travel agents if they are able to fill a certain number of seats on that flight. This is known as “bulk booking.”

While there are some airlines that do not work with travel agents, most do. And, in most cases, booking a flight through a travel agent is just as easy as booking it yourself online.

What exactly is a travel agent?

A travel agent is a professional who arranges the sale and purchase of transportation, accommodations, tours, and trips for their clients. In order to become a travel agent, one must complete a training program that is accredited by the American Society of Travel Agents (ASTA). After completing the training program and passing the ASTA exam, agents can then apply for a membership with ASTA.

The role of a travel agent has changed significantly over the years. In the past, travel agents were responsible for booking all aspects of a client’s trip, including flights, accommodation, tours, and activities. Today, however, many consumers book their own flights and accommodation online. As such, the role of a travel agent has evolved to become more of a consultant than simply someone who books travel arrangements.

While some agents still work for brick-and-mortar travel agencies, many now work as independent contractors. This means that they are not employed by any one company but instead work with multiple companies in order to provide their clients with the best possible options for their travel needs.

If you’re planning a trip and are considering using the services of a travel agent, it’s important to understand how they book flights. In most cases, agents will use what is known as a global distribution system (GDS), which is an electronic network that provides them with access to information about fares, flight schedules, and availability.

One of the most popular GDS systems used by agents is Sabre GDS. Sabre allows agents to search for flights across multiple airlines quickly and easily in order to find the best option for their clients. Another popular GDS system used by agents is Amadeus GDS. Amadeus provides similar functionality to Sabre but also offers additional features such as fare search and seat maps.

Travel agents also have access to airline reservation systems (ARS), which are used by airlines to manage their inventory and bookings. While ARS systems can be used by anyone with an login credentials, they are typically only used by travel agencies and not individual consumers. This is because ARS systems usually require special training in order to use them effectively.

In general, when booking flights for their clients, travel agents will first check availability on both GDS and ARS systems before comparing prices across different airlines. Once they have found the best option available, they will then make a booking on behalf of their client and issue a ticket or e-ticket confirmation.

The different types of travel agents

There are several types of travel agents, including:
-Full service travel agents: These agents typically work for a brick-and-mortar agency and may specialize in leisure or corporate travel.
-Online travel agencies (OTAs): These websites allow consumers to book their own travel accommodations and flights. Expedia and Priceline are examples of OTAs.
-Host agencies: These agencies provide support services to independent contractors who work as home-based travel agents.
-Consolidators: These agencies buy blocks of tickets from airlines at a discounted rate and then sell them to consumers.

How do travel agents book flights?

When it comes to booking flights, travel agents have a few options. They can book directly with the airline, book through an online booking platform like Expedia or Kayak, or use a combination of both.

For agents who book directly with the airline, they will typically have access to special fares that are not available to the general public. They may also be able to get a better seat assignment or upgrade at no additional cost. However, booking directly with the airline can be more time-consuming and may require some back-and-forth communication with the airline.

Online booking platforms like Expedia and Kayak offer a streamlined way to compare prices and book flights. Travel agents can often find good deals on these sites, but they may not have access to all of the same discounts and perks that they would if they booked directly with the airline.

What are the Benefits of Using a Travel agent?

A lot of people think that booking flights is easy and that they can do it themselves, but there are some benefits to using a travel agent.

First, a travel agent can help you find the best flight for your needs. They have access to a variety of airlines and can find the one that has the best price or the best schedule for you.

Second, if you have any problems with your flight, a travel agent can help you resolve them. If your flight is cancelled, for example, a travel agent can often get you on another flight much more easily than you could on your own.

Finally, using a travel agent is often cheaper than booking directly with an airline. This is because airlines often give travel agents discounts that they don’t give to individual customers.

Overall, then, there are several good reasons to use a travel agent when booking flights.

What are the drawbacks of using a travel agent?

One drawback of using a travel agent is that you may not get the most current information about flight schedules and pricing. Also, if you have a specific airline or flight in mind, a travel agent may not be able to book that particular flight for you.

How to find a good travel agent

When looking for a travel agent, it is important to find one that you can trust. There are a few ways to find a good travel agent.
-One way is to ask your friends or family if they have any recommendations.
-Another way is to look online for reviews.
-A third way is to contact the Better Business Bureau and see if there are any complaints against the travel agent you are considering.

Once you have found a few potential travel agents, you should interview them to see if they are a good fit for you. Some things you may want to ask about include:
-How long have they been in business?
-What is their specialty?
-How do they book flights?
-Do they have any promotions or discounts currently available?

When is the best time to book a flight?

There is no surefire answer to this question, as flight prices are constantly fluctuating. That being said, there are a few general tips that may help you snag a cheaper flight.

-Try to book your flight at least 21 days in advance, as this is when most airlines release their cheapest seats.
-Don’t be afraid to book on a Tuesday or Wednesday, as these are typically the cheapest days to fly.
-Avoid flying on popular travel days like Sundays and Fridays, as more people are likely to be flying on these days and thus prices may be higher.

Of course, these are just general tips – ultimately, the best time for you to book a flight will depend on your specific travel plans and itinerary.

How to get the best deal on a flight

how do travel agents book flights
There is no definitive answer to this question as travel agents typically have access to a variety of booking channels, each with its own advantages and disadvantages. In general, though, travel agents will start by checking aggregator websites like Kayak or Expedia to get an idea of flight prices and availability. They will then contact the airlines directly to check for any special fares or promotions that might not be listed on the aggregators. Finally, they may use their relationships with certain airlines or booking platforms to get additional discounts or perks for their clients.


Thank you for reading! We hope this article has helped to clear up some confusion about how travel agents book flights. As you can see, there is a lot more to it than simply calling up an airline and asking for a good deal. Travel agents have access to a variety of resources and contracts that allow them to get the best possible price for their clients.

If you are planning a trip and would like to use the services of a travel agent, we recommend doing some research to find one that is reputable and has experience booking the type of trip you are interested in. You can also check out our article on how to choose a travel agent.

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