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Career and Education Opportunities for Travel Agents in Portland, Oregon

For those living in the Portland, Oregon area, there are many career and education opportunities for travel agents. Currently, 970 people work as travel agents in Oregon. This is expected to grow by 3% to about 1,000 people by 2016. This is better than the national trend for travel agents, which sees this job pool shrinking by about 1.1% over the next eight years. Travel agents generally plan and sell transportation and accommodations for travel agency customers.

A person working as a travel agent can expect to earn about $14 hourly or $29,730 per year on average in Oregon and about $14 hourly or $30,570 annually on average in the U.S. as a whole. Incomes for travel agents are better than in the overall category of Travel in Oregon, and better than the overall Travel category nationally.

The Portland area is home to fifty-nine schools of higher education, including two within twenty-five miles of Portland where you can get a degree as a travel agent. Given that the most common education level for travel agents is a high school diploma or GED, you can expect to spend only a short time studying to be a travel agent if you already have a high school diploma.


Travel Agent video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, travel agents plan and sell transportation and accommodations for travel agency customers. They also determine destination, modes of transportation, travel dates, and accommodations required.

Travel agents compute costs of travel and accommodations, using calculators, computers, carrier tariff books, and hotel rate books. They also furnish customers with brochures and publications containing travel data, such as local customs, points of interest, or foreign country regulations. Equally important, travel agents have to collect payments for transportation and accommodations from customers. They are often called upon to book transportation and hotel reservations, using computer terminals or telephones. They are expected to print or request transportation carrier tickets, using computer printer systems or system links to travel carrier. Finally, travel agents talk with customers to establish destination, mode of transportation and accommodations required.

Every day, travel agents are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to listen to and understand others in meetings.

They also have to be able to talk with customers to establish destination, mode of transportation and accommodations required And finally, they sometimes have to compute costs of travel and accommodations, using calculators, computers, carrier tariff books, and hotel rate books.

Like many other jobs, travel agents must be thorough and dependable and be reliable.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Portland include:

  • Rental Counter Clerk. Receive orders for repairs, rentals, and services. May describe available options, compute cost, and accept payment.


Clark College - Vancouver, WA

Clark College, 1933 Fort Vancouver Way, Vancouver, WA 98663-3598. Clark College is a large college located in Vancouver, Washington. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 10,378 students. Clark College has a one to two year and an associate's degree program in Selling Skills and Sales Operations which graduated one and four students respectively in 2008.

Everest College-Portland - Portland, OR

Everest College-Portland, 425 SW Washington, Portland, OR 97204-2296. Everest College-Portland is a small college located in Portland, Oregon. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs. It has 764 students and an admission rate of 49%. Everest College-Portland has a less than one year program in Tourism and Travel Services Marketing Operations which graduated four students in 2008.


Certified Sales Professional: The Certified Sales Professional (CSP) program gives a thorough understanding of consultative selling.

For more information, see the Manufacturers Representatives Educational Research Foundation website.


Outfitter/Guide Registration

Licensing agency: Oregon State Marine Board
Address: PO Box 14145, Salem, OR 97309

Phone: (503) 378-8587
Website: Oregon State Marine Board


Portland, Oregon
Portland, Oregon photo by Fcb981

Portland is located in Multnomah County, Oregon. It has a population of over 557,706, which has grown by 5.4% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Portland, 103, is above the national average. New single-family homes in Portland are priced at $194,700 on average, which is below the state average. In 2008, six hundred forty-eight new homes were constructed in Portland, down from 1,205 the previous year.

The three big industries for women in Portland are health care, educational services, and professional, scientific, and technical services. For men, it is professional, scientific, and technical services, construction, and accommodation and food services. The average commute to work is about 23 minutes. More than 32.6% of Portland residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 11.4%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Portland is 10.7%, which is greater than Oregon's average of 10.6%.

The percentage of Portland residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 45.7%, is less than the national average but more than the state average. The largest religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Presbyterian Church (USA) and the Charismatic Churches Independent.

Portland is home to the Barnes Yard and the Haig as well as Cottonwood Bay City Park and Wallace City Park. Visitors to Portland can choose from Motel 6, Shilo Inns & Resorts and Comfort Inn Portland for temporary stays in the area.