Increase Your Average Booking Amount
By: Sandy Saburn, CTIE

For travel advisors, there are a few numbers that are important to know about your business and I think average booking size is probably one of the most important. Yet, many agents have no idea what their average booking size is. They can probably take a guess at the number, but chances are they haven’t ever calculated it.

To be clear, booking size is determined by looking at the total amount spent by one client on one trip booked with you. Anything you booked should be included. If you take the total gross amount for all of the trips you booked in a year and divide it by the number of bookings, you will have your average trip size.

For some agents, that number might be $3,000. For others, it could be $30,000. Or maybe it is somewhere in between. The important number is the amount of YOUR average booking.

Increasing your average booking size is a great way to increase your total sales for the year. This is because you are looking at it on a “per trip” basis and it isn’t as overwhelming.

To give you some examples I looked at the year-to-date bookings for two of our Travel MBA alumni. One (Advisor A) has just under $1 million in sales this year from 90 bookings. Advisor B has $350,000 in sales from 45 bookings. That means Advisor A has an average booking size of $11,111 and Advisor B’s average booking size is $7,777. These are very respectable averages, but can they be better?

If Advisor A increases their average to $12,500 while keeping their yield the same at 12%, it means sales of $1.125 million and a commission of $135,000. That is an increase in income of $15,000. This is from a relatively small increase in average transaction size.

For Advisor B, an increase to an average booking size of $9,000 would mean total sales of $405,000. Since Advisor B has a higher yield of 15%, it means an increase in income of more than $8,000.

Think about that average increase in terms of your own bookings. What would it mean if each client you work with spends $1,000, $2,000, or $3,000 more with you? For many, that increase would allow them to hire the assistance they so desperately need.

When increased average booking size is coupled with added (or increased) fees, the profitability number gets more and more healthy.