Now hiring!

I make this post both with a big grin on my face and at the same time with just a bit of fear. I have a big grin on my face because I never thought I’d be hiring this quickly. I have a bit of fear for entirely irrational reasons — business is great on all fronts, though the thought of having someone else relying on me still scares me just a bit. But I’ve gotten over that fear, as I realize this will be a complete win-win.

I’ve gotten to the point where I have a lot more “work” (I can’t really call it that, since I love what I do) than I can handle. Up until now I’ve managed partly by “working” 18 hours a day, and partly by limiting the number of new clients I take on. Neither is ideal.

Therefore I’m hiring. For now I’m looking for someone that is passionate about miles and luxury travel (ideally both, though if only one that’s fine too), that would be interested in helping with my award travel consulting business as well as my new job as a luxury travel advisor.

So what am I looking for?

  • Someone that’s passionate about travel and/or miles.I’m the luckiest person in the world to be able to do what I love everyday. My only complaint is that I have too much of it. I’m looking for someone with a similar passion for travel and/or miles that’s interested in learning (or teaching me, as the case may be) everything there is to know about travel. I honestly think this is one of the most diverse travel opportunities out there — you’d be exposed to working with frequent flyer programs, hotels, revenue tickets, tours, and of course travel media (since I’m looking for someone that can eventually also help manage the blog). Initial tasks would include helping research and book frequent flyer tickets, making hotel bookings, learning Sabre (which, based on how user friendly it is, I suspect was designed by the devil himself), and potentially learning invoicing software (which I believe was designed by the devil’s brother, whoever set up the Delta SkyMiles award calendar).
  • Someone that has a reliable schedule. I’m very flexible in regards to how many hours the person would work, and I don’t care what those hours are. All I care about is that they set hours in advance so that I know I can rely on them during those times and plan accordingly. I’m looking for someone that can work a minimum of 25 hours per week, possibly more.
  • Someone that’s in it for the long term. This for me is the most important point. The travel industry is amazing and there are so many opportunities in it. I’m not saying you have to work with me forever, but I do need someone that’s in it for the long run. I’ll put a lot of time (and money) into training the person so they have a good understanding of what they’re doing, so I’m not looking for someone just trying to make a few extra bucks, someone that’s temporarily unemployed and wants to work till they find something else, etc. I’d like someone that actually wants to work in travel not due to a lack of other options, but because that’s their passion. That being said, if you’re a student that’s still in school, that’s totally fine, as long as you’re passionate about travel, open to pursuing it after graduation, and able to put in that minimum number of hours.

Other useful skills include:

  • Understanding basic geography, like knowing the difference between Guangzhou and Gothenburg (aka being more knowledgeable than a US Airways Dividend Miles agent)
  • Understanding the basics of alliances, like that Air France is in SkyTeam (aka being more knowledgeable than a Delta SkyMiles agent)
  • Being willing to crop the size of my Diet Coke with lime and hot nut pictures for the blog
  • Being able to remain calm while being yelled at by clients because you weren’t able to get them six first class award seats nonstop from Los Angeles to Sydney from December 20 to January 1 with no date flexibility

Pay will be hourly to begin, though I can promise my intent is to make this a mutually beneficial relationship that you can make a career out of, though I’m still working on figuring out ways to create a performance bonus. Long term I’m all for a system based on commission, though.

For the one crazy person in the world that has read the above and said “oh my gosh, that job’s for me,” send me an email at [email protected] and tell me about yourself. I’m more interested in what you’re passionate about, what your strengths are, and what your availability is, than what “formal” jobs you’ve had.

Anyway, send me an email, let me get to know you, and let me know if you have any questions. Please note that right now I’m only hiring one person that meets the above criteria. If you’re looking for a side job either booking award tickets or on the luxury travel side of things I will likely be hiring for that soon as well and I’ll make a separate post about that, though right now I’m just looking for someone that wants to do it all and is able to commit the time it takes.

Filed Under: Advice
  1. Good luck on this, Ben. I would be interested but I don’t think I’d be able to put 25 hours into it. I’m sure you’re going to get a gangload of applicants. 🙂

  2. While this sounds amazing, I am not at a place in my life where I can make a career switch. HOWEVER, your last blurb about a side-job opportunity (as in, not quite 25 hrs/week) would be an extremely appealing option to me.

  3. Wow, thanks for all the interest thus far, folks! First of all I should say that there’s no rush in emailing, as I’ll take at least till next Tuesday before pursuing anything further. But I REALLY appreciate all the interest thus far, y’all are all qualified. Grrr, this won’t be easy.

    @ Tanto — There’s Diet Coke all over my keyboard (not because of the comment, but because of the email address). Good thing others can’t see it! 😉

  4. I can’t do the career switch, but are you looking for an intern a few hours a week? I could do website work, and I’m great with geography! I would accept payment in miles 🙂

  5. This sounds so perfect for me that I am giddy with excitement. I will get you an email either tonight or tomorrow. Would love to help your business grow.

  6. The side job may be of interest to me. I probably put 20+ hours a week into miles-and-points stuff nowadays, but I’m sure there’s someone who could use the full-time gig more than me 🙂

  7. Why do you need to hire anyone? Just double your prices and you’ll work 9 hours a day instead of 18 and make the same. If it’s still more then 9 hours, then triple your prices.

  8. Any location criteria Ben? Will the person you hire have to move or can they work from home (wherever that may be)?

  9. AI613: increasing your price doesnt mean you will make same profit for less hours. It could even make your business lose clients

  10. @Mike
    Simple math. If you charge double (it means double profit per client in Ben’s business model) and loose 50% of your clients then you make the same money, but work only half of the time you worked before.

  11. @ Chirag — Nope, this is a “work from home in your pajamas” job — my (second) favorite part about the job!

    @ al613 — If only it were that simple! I have several different types of clients. Some use my service because they can’t find awards on their own, while others use my service because it’s convenient and I save them a lot of time, and they think my rate is reasonable. I want to charge a fair price where I’m delivering a product that people find worthwhile. There’s only so much you can do without scaling your business, so rather than decrease demand I’d rather increase supply.

    @ Mike — I’m still ironing it out and it really depends on how quickly the person is able to learn and how much knowledge they possess coming in. There’s a LOT of opportunity, so the potential is limitless. You can email me for more details.

  12. @ al613 — I don’t think that’s necessarily true. If you double the prices you’d lose a lot of clients that have reasonable requests that don’t take that much time to do. By doubling your prices you may not only lose half of your clients, but also the half of your clients that were easy to deal with and had reasonable requests. There’s HUGE variability in the amount of time it takes to do awards, and I’d rather not only be stuck with the “impossible” ones.

  13. @al613 Not sure we can take for granted that the price/demand equation here is linear…At any rate it doesn’t seem like Ben is looking to halve his workday; more like meet demand.

    @Lucky Congrats! Seems like you’re getting some serious momentum going. Been fun to watch, and looking forward to more.

  14. Talk about being more knowledgable than the airline reps, just yesterday I was on the line with an Alaska Airline rep and she did not know what the word “alliance” meant.

  15. would love to apply for the job but I doubt I’ll be able to officially put on 25+ hour a week, but i am putting more than a couple hof work hours reading your blog as well as other boarding board and Flyertalk:-).

  16. OMG, this is so not me but I’m thrilled to hear of your immense success. The skies the limit, ha! Best finding the perfect person to help you out.

  17. Wow! Lots of emails. Man, this would be fun for me… But as you know Lucky, can’t do it… 😉 🙁
    Would be a good candidate though. 🙂 All my bookings on points have been absolutely incredible, much like yours. 😉
    One day, if I get tired of this career – or the flying (not likely!). 😀

  18. I have a full time job, therefore I will not able to meet your 25+ hours a week. But I’m very interested in your side job of booking hotel reservations or airlines. I know a good deal about booking airline rewards.. but not so much in hotels.

    Btw love your blog!

  19. I think I know who you want to pick and His name is Rocky!! Sent you an email already! But don’t worry with me your nuts will be cropped to look larger then life ;P

  20. Ben, Very Nice offer. This gig is like child play for lots of your readers, myself included. Getting paid for something you love to do and be able to do it anywhere in the world, that’s a dream job. You think I should quit my day job and apply? j/k. I’m sure you will tons of qualified people. Congratulations and best wishes for a bright future.

  21. Hi Ben,

    I also sent you an email. When you get a chance, please let me know if you received it. I just want to be sure, since this sounds like a great job. Thanks for the opportunity!

    Also, do you have any idea about the time frame for the application process, or when the job would start?

    Thanks, and have a great weekend!

  22. Hopefully, you will be hiring again in 10 years. I will be emailing you then, when I am most likely able to do the 25 hours a week. I know I’d love the work.


  23. Man. This sounds completely ideal except for the solid schedule thing… I’ll be all over the pacific switching time zones.
    I wish you the best of luck with your adventure and hope you aren’t too tied down with a REAL job and all.

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