Learn About Being an Independent Travel Consultant

Interview with Karen D'Valentine of Coastal Travel Group

female travel agent at computer
••• PeopleImages.com/DigitalVision/Getty Images

Many readers may recognize the name. A while back we interviewed Karen about The Traveling Vineyard home business opportunity as an independent wine consultant. Karen continues to be extremely successful as an Executive Director for The Traveling Vineyard, but more recently she has also joined

When I learned that Karen had become involved with a Coastal Vacations business I asked if she would agree to a second interview - this time about the Coastal Vacations home business opportunity.

While most of us have heard of Coastal Vacations, I wanted to know more about the ins and outs of the business opportunity and what it takes to be successful. To find out, I interviewed Karen D'Valentine of Coastal Travel Group, Inc., an Executive Directorship and Independent Coastal Vacations travel consultancy founded by Kris Russell.

Why Become Involved With a Coastal Vacations Business

The travel industry is the largest industry in the world with over $5 trillion in sales per year. It is growing on an average of 23% each year. No matter what the economy is like, people will still travel and take vacations. Coastal allows people to travel for wholesale costs through their lifetime vacation memberships.

Why Coastal Vacations Is Not Like Multi-Level Marketing (MLM)

Multi-Level Marketing puts more emphasis on the recruiting of others rather than the marketing of the product. In MLM marketing, independent distributors develop their organization by recruiting a down line of independent distributors who build a customer base, expanding the overall organization. Typically the distributors who got in at the ground floor level are the only ones who earn a significant income. With Coastal, all of our representatives earn a considerable income based on marketing our discount vacation memberships only, not recruiting a downline.

With MLM:

  • Generally speaking, you need to build a large base of associates (a down line) to see substantial profits
  • People at the top earn more than those below them
  • MLMs typically have smaller payouts

With Coastal:

  • After your first two training sales you are promoted to a Director and keep 100% of your profits.
  • Everyone has the same earning potential.
  • Substantial profit from each sale goes directly to the representative.

The Benefits of Having a Coastal Vacations Business

  • The ability to work from home
  • You can sell directly to the consumer
  • You get immediate income; You don't have to wait for a paycheck
  • You can work on a flexible schedule because you set your own hours
  • The opportunity to be your own boss
  • You get major vacation discounts you probably couldn't get elsewhere
  • There's a large income potential

How Long the Coastal Vacations Opportunity Has Been Available

Coastal Vacations has been in business for over 25 years. The home-based branch has been available for about 15 years.

The Biggest Challenge With This Business

Just like any new business, starting something new. We have developed a step-by-step, quick start training system for our new associates, which allows them to become productive more quickly and achieve success in a short time.

The Skills or Knowledge People Should Have to Get Into This Business

There are no special skills or knowledge required to start this business. Those who contact us will be completely trained and supported by us. I truly believe that anyone can be successful at this business.

On Page 1: What is Coastal Vacations and how is it different than multi-level marketing (MLM)?

How is compensation structured?

You will receive direct compensation for each discount vacation membership you market.

What is a reasonable expectation for earnings for a Coastal Vacations business in its first year? Long term?

Many associates earn over $100,000 or more in their first year. Some in their fifth year, through steady growth, are earning upwards of $500,000 per year. Individual results vary based on effort.

How long would you say it takes, on average, for someone to be able to turn a profit with this business?

3 - 4 weeks is average for an associate to really begin to earn a consistent income. Many, including ourselves, have begun to earn profit within the first week.

The system is turn-key, or automated, so that you can follow the system and be successful in your business.

How does one reach the Director level and what are the advantages of doing so?

You must first decide what level of income you want to qualify to earn. For example, our most popular level is the Premiere Combo (Level 1&2). After just two training sales you become a Director for life. As a Director you will receive profits of $1000 to $3200 from each travel membership marketed.

What is the minimum investment someone could make and still get in on this business opportunity?

The level of investment varies according to which of the three levels a new associate wants to start at.

  1. Discount Travel Package - Level 1
  2. Premiere Combo - Levels 1 & 2 (Most Popular)
  3. Platinum Combo - Levels 1,2,& 3 (Businesses/Corporations/Groups)

The lowest level, Level 1 currently requires an investment of $1295, although that's subject to change and I encourage your readers to visit our Website for current figures. While the higher levels require larger investments, they also provide additional income potential.

What kind of initial and ongoing support does Coastal Travel Group provide to those who want to start a Coastal Vacations business?

We provide one-on-one, ongoing support and training to each of our associates so that they achieve success to their fullest potential. We also provide a step-by-step training program which allows new associates to streamline their business, making it simple to achieve success. Training also includes state-of-the-art Websites and a personal back office, recorded information, movie presentations, toll-free numbers, training calls and many other tools associates can use to be successful.

There are many thousands of people out there doing this. Is it too late for someone coming in on the ground floor to reasonably expect to be successful?

As I mentioned before the travel industry is the largest growth industry in the world. Additionally, home-based businesses are started at a rate of one every 11 seconds in the United States alone. The combination of being able to offer a home business opportunity marketing a travel-related product should continue to be an extremely lucrative business indefinitely.

From Your Guide to Home Business

Neither I nor About.com endorse any specific home business opportunity. Like any other business opportunity, you need to carefully evaluate if this is an opportunity that will work for you.

Because Coastal Vacations is so popular, there are many Directorships with whom you can start this home business opportunity. Your success may depend on whom you select to associate with, since training and support could vary. For more information on Coastal Travel Group, Inc., including contact and Website information, see the Coastal Travel Group's Home Business Profile on this site.