New enhancements to Luggage Forward's travel agent and affiliate portal will enable travel professionals to add door-to-door luggage and sports equipment delivery to their clients’ itineraries, while earning commission for every booking, co-founder Zeke Adkins told Travel Agent.
"With the rise of checked baggage fees, and continuing concern about airlines losing luggage, this is a growing trend. We have agents join our commission program and refer their clients to us on a daily basis as travelers are looking for an better way to get their luggage to their vacation destination," Adkins says.
"Shipping luggage is easy, convenient and our service is guaranteed. We are the only luggage shipper who provides a full money back guarantee plus $500 on time guarantee worldwide," he notes. Luggage Forward pays a 10 percent commission.
Adkins says that as a Virtuoso Preferred Supplier, travel agents can also trust that shipping luggage, golf club's, bike's and ski and snowboard equipment is a service that has proven its value to clients.
Even if clients don't want to add luggage shipping to their itinerary at the same time they book their vacation, agents can embed a customized link into a client's confirmation email so if a client decides to book luggage shipping on their own at a later date, the agent still gets commission, Adkins notes.
The portal provides real-time reporting, co-branded microsites, promotional campaigns, user and agency hierarchies, group booking site help and Luggage Forward staff help.
Adkins reports that the company has been in the luxury travel industry for over a decade and serves more than 200 countries and territories worldwide.
"The convenience is real. Travelers don't have to haul bags through the airport anymore, wait in numerous lines or wait at baggage carousels. They can walk off the plane and directly to their final destination where their bags will be waiting for them," he notes.
Bags are picked up at a home or office and shipped directly to the cruise ship, golf course, hotel, villa, spa resort, rental property or vacation home.
Agents get a commission for every booking they refer. Adkins says agents can book online, over the phone 24/7 or they can build a customized microsite page where their clients can book directly. "This is a great option because the page has dual branding and once a traveler books, we can see which travel agent referred the booking - allowing us to credit their commission account."
When a travel agent signs into the affiliate portal, they can also track their client bookings and commission in real-time as well as have access to marketing tools and Luggage Forward shipping specialist support. Travel agencies can also use the portal to create a team hierarchy which tracks bookings and commission at an agency, office and agent level.
Adkins sees his service as a growth trend but does not see Luggage Forward working with other consortia.
"Luggage Forward has been a Virtuoso Preferred Supplier for five years. Because Virtuoso is the leader in luxury travel, their client demographic has proven to be a great fit for our service. Agents who belong to other consortia become affiliates independently and most find that luggage shipping is a trend and service that is relevant for some segment of their clients."
The commission rate for travel agents starts at 10 percent and may increase for high-volume agencies, Adkins says. "Regarding pricing - domestic one-way pricing starts at $39, but on average we see clients spend about $200 one-way as they send more bags, larger bags or use a faster service."