6 Tips for Choosing Travel Agency Suppliers Wisely

With these 6 expert tips to choosing the right suppliers for your travel agency, you'll soon be on your way to delivering top-notch service for your clients.

In the dynamic world of travel agencies, success often hinges on the ability to build and maintain strong partnerships with reliable suppliers. As a travel agent operating with a travel host agency, it’s crucial to understand that your success is intricately linked to the suppliers you choose to work with. In this comprehensive guide, we will delve into the key factors for choosing travel agency suppliers, emphasizing the unique considerations that come with operating alongside a travel host agency.


Understanding the Travel Host Agency Relationship

Working with a travel host agency offers numerous benefits, including access to a curated list of suppliers. These suppliers are carefully chosen by the host agency based on factors such as reliability, quality of service, and competitive pricing. As a travel agent, you will be able to leverage these established relationships to enhance the experience for your clients.

Under a travel host agency like Pickles Travel Network, you have the advantage of accessing a diverse range of suppliers catering to different travel niches. Take advantage of this diversity to tailor your offerings to a broad spectrum of clients, leveraging partnerships with suppliers such as Exceptional Villas and Viator.

Working together with your travel agency suppliers.

1. Research and Due Diligence

Before choosing suppliers, it’s imperative for travel agents to conduct thorough research and due diligence. Evaluate potential suppliers based on their reputation, track record, and client reviews. Look for suppliers who align with your agency’s values and are known for providing excellent service.

With a travel host agency, the due diligence process is often simplified, as the host agency has likely vetted and established relationships with a network of trusted suppliers. However, it’s still essential for individual travel agents to stay informed and be aware of the offerings and performance of these suppliers.


2. Range of Services

Consider the range of services offered by potential suppliers. The best suppliers for your agency will be those that align with the type of travel experiences you aim to provide for your clients. Whether you specialize in luxury travel, adventure trips, or family vacations, ensure that your chosen suppliers can meet the unique needs of your clientele.

You may have access to a diverse range of suppliers catering to different travel niches with a host agency. Take advantage of this diversity to tailor your offerings to a broad spectrum of clients.

Unique offerings when working with travel agency suppliers.


3. Reliability and Support

Reliability is a cornerstone of successful supplier relationships. Evaluate suppliers based on their ability to consistently deliver on promises, meet deadlines, and provide excellent customer support. Issues such as cancellations, delays, or inadequate support can have a direct impact on your agency’s reputation.

When working with a travel host agency like Pickles Travel Network, inquire about the support mechanisms in place. A reliable host agency will have established communication channels with suppliers, ensuring that issues are resolved promptly and efficiently.


4. Pricing and Flexibility

While competitive pricing is important, it should not be the sole factor in choosing suppliers. Consider the overall value provided, including the quality of services, flexibility in terms of customization, and any additional perks or benefits offered.

With a travel host agency, pricing structures are often negotiated at the host agency level. However, it’s still valuable for travel agents to understand these structures and communicate transparently with clients regarding pricing details.

Seamless integration with travel agency suppliers.

5. Technological Integration

In today’s digital age, technological compatibility is a vital consideration. Choose suppliers that embrace technology and offer seamless integration with your agency’s booking systems and tools. This ensures a smoother workflow, reduces the likelihood of errors, and enhances the overall efficiency of your operations.

Ask your host agency about the technological infrastructure in place. A forward-thinking host agency will likely have integrated systems that streamline the booking process and enhance the overall efficiency of its affiliated travel agents.


6. Cultural Sensitivity and Responsiveness

Cultural sensitivity is particularly crucial in the travel industry, where clients often seek authentic and immersive experiences. Choose suppliers who understand and respect the cultural nuances of the destinations they operate in. A supplier’s ability to adapt and respond to the unique needs of diverse clientele can set your agency apart in the competitive travel market.

When working with a travel host agency, assess the host agency’s commitment to cultural sensitivity and responsiveness. The host agency’s values and practices should align with your agency’s mission to provide meaningful and culturally enriching travel experiences.

In the ever-evolving landscape of travel agencies, the success of a travel agent is intricately linked to the quality of relationships with suppliers.

Having a good relationship with your suppliers as a travel agent

With a travel host agency, the process of choosing suppliers is streamlined, with access to a curated list of trusted partners. However, individual travel agents must still play an active role in evaluating, selecting, and nurturing these relationships to ensure the best possible experiences for their clients. By conducting thorough research and considering the range of services, travel agents can build a robust network of suppliers that enhances their agency’s reputation and sets them on the path to sustained success.

Remember, the right suppliers are not just service providers; they are integral partners in crafting unforgettable travel experiences for your clients. Choose wisely, invest in relationships, and watch your travel agency thrive in a competitive and dynamic industry.

Meet Pickles Travel Network: The Host Agency That Makes It Easy to Start and Scale Your Travel Business

Whether you’ve just started your travel agent journey, or you’ve been on it… Pickles Travel Network has the tools and resources to help grow your business. Unlike other host agencies, we believe in letting our members choose what works best for their business. Pickles Travel Network allows you to choose your commission rate, along with whether or not you want to charge planning fees. As a member, you’ll receive instant access to our list of suppliers, several marketing platforms and monthly coaching/trainings. 

IATA | CLIA Membership

PTN IATAN code: 45769253

PTN CLIA number: 00032299

When you enroll with suppliers, you must use PTN’s codes to receive a commission from us. Want to sign up for your own CLIA or IATA numbers for exclusive travel benefits? See below.

Get your own IATA/IATAN ID Card:


The IATA/IATAN ID Card is the industry-standard credential to identify bona fide travel professionals. Key benefits include access to concessionary incentives from industry suppliers. Just added, the IATA MemberPerks program provides cardholders with daily savings at over 300,000 merchants across North America.

To be eligible, you must be registered with IATAN under PTN’s IATA number 45769253, working a minimum of 20 hours per week and earning a minimum of $5,000 per annum in commissions. You’ll need to send PTN a support ticket asking for approval. Once approved, we will send you a PRIN # to allow you to register with IATAN and ask for an ID card.

Get your own CLIA EMBARK ID:


Obtain a CLIA EMBARC ID for travel discounts and FAM (Familiarization) trips. Join CLIA as an Individual Agent Member, under Pickles Travel Network CLIA #00032299.

Once you’ve registered, submit a support ticket to let us know, and we will approve your registration.