The Travel Institute Trends Indicate Popularity of Industry, Certifications

Reports 60% growth in entry-level training enrollments; awards more than $100,000 in certification scholarships 

FRAMINGHAM, MA, September 15, 2015 – The Travel Institute today released new information that supports two key career and professional development trends. First, more individuals are preparing themselves for a career in the travel industry; and secondly, there’s a renewed interest across all experience levels in travel certification and specialization.

The findings are based on an analysis of the organization’s enrollment levels in several of its flagship curriculums and programs, including TRIPKit, Certified Travel Associate (CTA), Certified Travel Counselor (CTC), and Certified Travel Industry Executive (CTIE).

Most critical to note is the upward trend in TRIPKit enrollments, The Travel Institute’s entry-level training program that’s reporting a 60 percent increase in enrollments through the first eight months of 2015 (August) compared to all of 2014, and the highest level since the non-profit organization launched the program in 2005.

The comprehensive training is built around a free “getting started” webinar, two college-level textbooks, and two supporting workbooks to thoroughly prepare a newcomer for a career in the travel business. Upon completion of the studies, a Travel Agent Proficiency test is available and students can earn their first industry-recognized designation with a passing grade. A complimentary six-month membership to The Travel Institute is also part of the total learning experience.

Driving much of TRIPKit’s popularity are the complimentary webinars that are offered on a regular basis as well as a variety of activities that were featured in The Travel Institute’s inaugural “New to the Industry” themed month in February 2015. More than 625 people participated in just the webinars that month. Webinar attendees who purchase TRIPKit receive a complimentary destination specialist course.

“Although our TRIPKit product is certainly affordably priced, it’s still a $300 financial investment and one that people don’t take lightly,” said The Travel Institute COO Diane Petras, CTIE, CMP. “So, to see it up 60 percent not to mention the highest enrollment on record, well, we certainly took notice. This clearly busts the myth that travel agents are a dying breed. In fact, they’re truly alive and well and able to thrive given the proper training and job opportunities.”

In the certification arena, The Travel Institute’s statistics underscore how critical and highly valued its advanced professional development courses are to an individual’s success. Since 2014, The Travel Institute has welcomed:

  • More than 2,000 enrollees in the CTA program
  • More than 400 enrollees in the CTC program
  • More than 170 enrollees in the CTIE program

“Those strong numbers not only have to do with a renewed interest in travel as a viable career, but also because we’re constantly evolving our training content and new learning platforms to ensure that all travel professionals receive the highest quality college-level training to help them – and our industry – achieve excellence.

“Also fueling the interest in certification is our financial commitment to our customers. In fact, in the last two years, The Travel Institute Fund has endowed more than $100,000 in scholarships for CTA, CTC, and CTIE certification programs. We’ve been able to help more than 600 professionals reach their educational goals through this special endowment that’s part of our annual Promote Your Professionalism campaign in July,” said Petras.

Scholarship recipients were quite vocal on the valued derived from the various certifications. “Earning a Travel Institute certification most likely will land me that ‘forever’ position in a full-sized company,” said Brenda Bales of American Ring Travel.

“Earning certifications from the Travel Institute shows that you are a professional and are willing to invest time and effort to further your knowledge of the travel industry. It shows your clients, colleagues, and suppliers your dedication and gives them comfort knowing they are working with a trained professional,” said Maryellen Yeager, CTC, of Palm Coast Travel.

For more information, visit The Travel Institute’s new website at

About The Travel Institute

Established in 1964, The Travel Institute serves as a community of knowledge and insight for all travel professionals. Through innovative education programs, professional certifications and customized learning solutions, The Institute fulfills its non-profit mission to promote a standard of industry knowledge and excellence. For more information about The Travel Institute, visit or call (800) 542-4282.