Love What You Do; Earn What you Deserve

Love What You Do; Earn What you Deserve

When you ask a travel agent what they love about their job, they will probably praise the amazing opportunities for travel, the clients who become friends and the colleagues who become family. Personal travel managers Carli Hester, Joanne Miller and Dominic Bellissio have each built very individual businesses that fit perfectly with their passions and lifestyles: doing what they truly love, and earning what they truly deserve. 


Carli Hester – PTM based in Armstrong Creek, VIC – with TravelManagers for 7.5 years 

I was a mum with three young kids, working in a small local travel agency when I decided to make the move to home-based consulting. Having started out in my travel career directly from high school in a small local travel agency, I had never any real training and I didn’t have very high expectations as to how far I could go.  When I moved to TravelManagers, I was immediately blown away by how enthusiastic, kind and supportive everyone was: my Business Partnership Manager (BPM), the rest of the National Partnership Office (NPO) team, TravelManagers’ senior management and my fellow PTMs. 

I left my previous agency on really good terms and I didn’t take my clients with me, so I was a little concerned about how I would be able build a new business from scratch. My kids were all at school and I wanted to be more available for them, so I just focused on starting out very small. In fact, I remember saying, “if I can just sell one Bali trip a week, I’ll be right – just a couple of hundred dollars to help the family.” 

With support from my BPM and the NPO team, I was able to grow my business very quickly, earning roughly double what I had hoped to earn in my first year. And now, seven years on and post-pandemic, 2022 was a record-breaking year and 2023 is looking to be even better.  

It’s the simple things – being able to plan ahead financially, pay a bit more off the mortgage, take time off from my business to take the family on an amazing holiday – that make the long hours so worthwhile. I was able to pay my daughter’s school fees straight up at the start of the year this year, which I’ve never been able to do that before. 

Of course, you do have to find the happy balance that works for you – it’s not all about the money if you’re constantly exhausted. I’m definitely working harder than ever, but the hours I work are my choice and I genuinely don’t think there is another job I could do that would offer the same financial rewards and work-life balance as I have now.   

 Joanne Miller – PTM based in Greystanes, NSW – with TravelManagers for two years 

When the retail travel store where I had been working was forced to close during the pandemic, I had to make a big decision as to whether I would find a way to remain in the industry I loved, or whether it was time to look elsewhere. With the demands of a young family to balance with my career, I realised that the home-based model of consulting was my most appealing option. I looked at a variety of different companies that were offering similar models, and in July 2021, I joined the TravelManagers family. 

After 27 years in a retail store, the move to home-based consulting was a massive change for me and my customers, but from a cost perspective, there’s no comparison between the retail environment and home-based consulting, and I can visit my clients whenever, wherever.  

Two years on, I can say that I am doing very well. I’m earning more than I was in my previous positions, and the potential going forward is looking excellent. I definitely feel I am being financially rewarded for the effort I’m putting into my business. 

But earning what I deserve isn’t my only measurement of success – it’s also being able to set my hours, to participate in more of my children’s sporting and school activities, to work around other commitments and, best of all, to achieve balance in my family life, which I’m loving. 

Dominic Bellissio – PTM based in Casula, NSW – with TravelManagers for xx years 

I had been working in the travel industry for seven years at the time, and I was ready to try something a bit different. A former colleague who had moved to Travel Managers six months previously encouraged me to take a look at their model, so I did, and I liked what I saw. 

Back in the day, working for a bricks and mortar agency didn’t really offer the opportunity to get paid more for working harder – a lot of the time, your extra effort only benefited the agency. But at TravelManagers, having my own business means I’m free to set my own hours, be my own boss, specialise in my favourite destinations, run my own campaigns, set my own fees.  

There are two partnership models to choose from, and no caps on how much you I earn – I can actually put those big ideas into practice, knowing that if I’m working a little bit harder, it’s me who will financially benefit. Every year I can set myself bigger goals, and just keep working towards achieving them while growing my business and my client base. 

With the travel industry currently enjoying a massive resurgence, now is an exciting time to make the change. TravelManagers will ensure you are taken care of, and you’ll be free to focus on implementing the ideas that will work for you and your clients, choosing which clients you want to work with and creating the business you want to have. 


Click here for more from Carli, Joanne, Dominic and other PTMs who are earning what they truly deserve with TravelManagers. And if you’re curious to find out what you could be earning under either of our business models, check out TravelManagers’ projected earnings calculator or call us for a confidential chat with one of our state-based Business Partnership Managers