231 Front Street, Lahaina, HI 96761 info@givingpress.com 808.123.4567

What a Tour Broker Is and How to Become One

A person who operates a tour company is a broker. A broker is a middleman. Brokers buy or arrange items or services and sells these items or services to the end buyer. Some examples of brokers are:

Independent insurance agents. These agents do not provide insurance; they arrange insurance for you from an insurance company. Insurance agents usually get a commission from an insurance company.

Stock brokers. Like insurance agents, stock brokers help you buy and sell stock. They don’t own the stock. These brokers also receive a commission based on the amount sold.

Real estate broker. Again, these brokers do not own the properties they sell and they get a commission based on the value of what they sell.

There are also tour brokers. Tour brokers serve a variety of customers. This article is about what a tour brokerage is and the basics of this business.

Here is a good description if what a tour is: A trip with visits to various places of interest for business, pleasure, or instruction.

Here travel is defined: To go from one place to another, as on a trip; journey.

A tour, then, is not only travel but it is travel with the purpose being pleasure or interest. You may think of a tour as extended travel with the object being to see and experience an area. Travel, on the other hand, is usually only about moving from one place to another.

A tour broker works with people on a continuous basis. If you are going to get involved in this type of business you should like working with people – you have to be a people person.

Tour brokers are not travel agents. Travel agents arrange for the travel needs of their customers. Usually a travel agent will only work with individuals or small groups (families, for example). Travel agents also always buy something that is already in place (air travel, car rentals, hotels, etc.), they do not originate anything.

Tour brokers originate – they arrange tours, they arrange the transportation, they arrange the lodging, they arrange the meals, and they arrange other services for their clients. A tour broker plans on what kind of tour he/she wants to operate.

Next, the tour broker makes arrangements for the various components of the tour – transportation, food, lodging, attractions, etc.

There are many types of tour companies. Some offer guided tours of a local area – tours of a city or an attraction, for example. Some offer tours in a natural setting – guided tours through the Grand Canyon fall into this category. Some offer tours to various national and state parks. Some offer tours through a large area, a multi-state tour is a good example.

IF YOU LIKE TO TRAVEL – FOR FREE – THIS IS A GREAT BUSINESS TO BE IN

You may have to do inspections of the hotels and attractions that you will be making a part of your tour. If you have been taught correctly you will know …

Personal Financial Planning – Risk Management

Risk management in financial planning is the systematic approach to the discovery and treatment of risk. The objective is to minimize worry by dealing with the possible losses before they happen.

The process involves:

Step 1: Identification

Step 2: Measurement

Step 3: Method

Step 4: Administration

Risk Identification

The process begins by identifying all potential losses that can cause serious financial problems.

(1) Property Losses – The direct loss that requires replacement or repair and indirect loss that requires additional expenses as a result of the loss.

(For example, the damage of the car incurs repair cost and additional expenses to rent another car while the car is being repaired.)

(2) Liability Losses – It arises from the damage of other’ property or personal injury to others.

(For example, the damage to public property as a result of a car accident.)

(3) Personal Losses – The loss of earning power due to death, disability, sickness or unemployment and the extra expenses incurred as a result of injury or illness.

(For example, the loss of employment due to cancer and the required treatment cost in addition to normal living expenses.)

Risk Measurement

Subsequently, the maximum possible loss (i.e. the severity) associated with the event as well as the probability of occurrence (i.e. the frequency) is quantified.

(1) Property Risk – The replacement cost necessary to replace or repair the damaged asset is estimated by a comparable asset at the current price. Indirect expenses for alternative arrangements like accommodation, food, transport, etc, needs to be taken into account.

(2) Liability Risk – This is considered to be unlimited as it will depend upon the severity of the event and the amount the court awards to the aggrieved party.

(3) Personal Risk – Estimate the present value of the required living expenses and additional expenses per year and computing it over a predetermined number of years at some assumed interest rate and inflation.

Methods Of Treating Risk

A combination of all or several techniques are used together to treat the risk.

(1) Avoidance – The complete elimination of the activity.

This is the most powerful technique, but also the most difficult and may sometimes be impractical. In addition, care must be taken that avoidance of one risk does not create another.

(For example, to avoid the risk associated with flying, never take a flight on the plane.)

(2) Segregation – Separating the risk.

This is a simple technique that involves not putting all your eggs in one basket.

(For example, to avoid both parents dying in a car crash together, travel in separate vehicles.)

(3) Duplication – Have more than one.

This technique requires preparation of additional back up(s).

(For example, to avoid the loss of use of a car, have 2 or more cars.)

(4) Prevention – Forestall the risk from happening.

This technique aims to reduce the frequency of the loss occurring.

(For example, to prevent fires, keep matches away from children.)

(5) Reduction – Minimize the magnitude of loss.

This …

MLM Vs Cooperative Marketing – Which is the Best Home Business Opportunity?

If you are considering starting any new business venture, or getting into MLM/Network Marketing in particular, you owe it to yourself to read this article — particularly if you are a newbie.

These days, most people are familiar with MLM/Network Marketing. However, most have never heard of Cooperative Marketing. Those that aren’t may find the content herein to be shocking and amazing, if not revelatory and potentially life-changing.

Cooperative Marketing has been around for a long time in the mainstream business world, but it is relatively new to the “home-based business” world. The term can mean many things, but in general it means that the retailer is receiving marketing assistance from the manufacturer, supplier or other large-scale enterprise. Such advertising “co-ops” are common in many brick-and-mortar industries, including the grocery, insurance and publishing businesses.

In the case of a home based business, it means the company you are working with is taking on a major burden that normally would fall to you: the marketing of the product. In fact, the better Cooperative Marketing companies do much more than this, including actual selling, distribution and customer service. To date, only a relative handful of companies use this business model (compared to the hundreds of MLMs out there).

More’s the pity, because a growing number of “work at home” authorities consider it the far superior business model — both for the companies in question and for their individual representatives. Though the two business models have many similarities, they are more clearly defined by their differences, which are explored in this article.

MLM (MULTILEVEL MARKETING)/NETWORK MARKETING

As you probably know, the MLM/Network Marketing business is a huge industry. Many household names (Amway, Avon, Mary Kay, Herbalife, Shaklee, etc.) have had tremendous success using this business model, and many thousands of representatives (also called associates or distributors) have built profitable businesses in the industry. A smaller but still sizable number have built successful enough businesses to live very, very well indeed.

The MLM/Network Marketing business is based on the idea that reps are responsible for just about everything in their business, other than producing the product and handling commissions and bonuses. The company does these last chores, while the representative must undertake tasks which many find difficult and even onerous.

First, reps must find their own customers. Second, they must find new people to join their businesses with them. This is known as building a downline, and great success in the industry is predicated on having a large and thriving one. Specific business plans vary from company to company, but generally speaking you will not reach the top of the leader boards by selling alone. Third, reps may be required to order certain minimal levels of product every month, warehouse those products, distribute them, handle returns, etc.

While it is true many people have had great success in MLM/Network Marketing, it is also true that a far greater number have had little or no success. The plain truth is, not everyone is cut out …

The 4 Levels of an Insurance Career Path

You may see many newspaper ads tying to hypnotize a prospective agent stating how easy it is to make $100,000. Moreover, they emphasize it can be done in the first year. Please give me a nickel for the 1,500,000 licensed life and health insurance agents that cannot achieve that. ($75,000 if you are calculating). Before $100,000 of income can be reached, most agents must achieve at least the third if not fourth level.

LEVEL ONE This is the insurance trainee, just starting out and continuing the first 12 months. This level is actually more about survival than it is about earnings. Many insurance trainee agents deplete savings accounts, ask relatives for loan assistance, and even take out a second mortgage on their house. Either they should have never applied for the position or the insurance agency has provided inadequate assistance to ease the agent’s burden. In the majority of cases, it is the later. Only 20{4917788a0bd7aa7369c2a945027b4fe6c9853cda4150a24fe1255b18ce3083dc} of agents struggle by, only to encounter another enduring battle.

LEVEL TWO This is the insurance rookie, who will be facing three more years of uphill challenges. Again, survival appears in the picture, along with enough income to keep from going under. The life preserver is based on both the agent’s attitude and selling skills. Selling skills start with finding the right people to focus your attention on. People that fit into your comfort zone and have a need for an insurance product you are familiar enough selling. This leads to giving a sufficient quantity of appointments. However, company provided scripts are a hard way to go when doing a presentation.. Of the appointments made, can the still inexperienced agent produce enough sales for a decent income? Only 8{4917788a0bd7aa7369c2a945027b4fe6c9853cda4150a24fe1255b18ce3083dc} of the starting agents now remain.

LEVEL THREE These are the insurance innovators with over 4 years experience and under 8. Why are they innovators? To survive the have broken just about all the career company rules of the plan to success. First, they have tossed out the insurance company presentation book, sometimes in favor of a plain yellow legal pad. The company presentation speech has been discarded in favor of a friendly conversation. The insurance innovator uses a lead acquisition system that quickly brings out the highest qualified prospects. This agent has stopped becoming an insurance seller. He now helps guide the prospect to a tailored plan that turns the prospect into a buyer. In addition, the insurance innovator has a valuable base of built up clients for additional sales.

As insurance is now officially a career, few of these agents drop out. Many start to specialize in selling fewer products. A lot now are semi-independent and some even have their own firms. For others they make take a new direction, with a different company or firm that seems much more promising. Incomes are often comparable or higher than the national average.

LEVEL FOUR The true insurance professionals. Numerous pros are fully independent. They have often signed contracts with six or more independent life …

Car Accidents Involving Drivers With the Same Insurance

You are driving down the road when another driver runs a stop sign, hitting into the side of your vehicle. You check to see if the people in the other car okay, then call the police. While exchanging information with the other driver, you find out that they have the same car insurance carrier as you do, leading you to wonder: How do I file a claim if the other driver has the same insurer? Is the process any different than normal? If so, how?

Read below to find out the answers to these questions and advice on how to make sure you get fairly compensated.

How Insurance Companies Handle Accidents When Both Drivers are Customers

In an ideal situation, an insurance company would handle accidents between two of its’ customers the same way they should handle any other car accident: impartially and responsibly. However, this is not a perfect world, and insurance companies have been caught failing to provide adequate compensation to customers in the sake of their bottom line profit.

When a car accident occurs and both drivers have the same insurer, the insurance company must handle it carefully in order to avoid running into a “conflict of interest.” To do so, most insurance companies will issue each driver their own adjustor. The idea is that both adjustors will evaluate the claim and liability of the accident independently, and present their findings to each other once they have determined fault.

If both adjustors agree that one of the drivers is at fault, then the adjustor overseeing the at-fault driver will process the claim further and provide compensation to the other driver based on their insurance policy.

However, if there is a complication about liability, and both adjustors do not agree about who was at fault, then they will act as if they work for two separate companies to handle the claim. Two adjustors from the same company will never take legal action to determine fault, but rather come to an agreement amongst themselves.

Oftentimes insurance companies waive a customer’s deductible if they are involved in an accident with another customer in order to avoid the hassle of dealing with liability disagreements and a customer accusing them of acting in “bad faith” by making a decision that is not in either driver’s best interests.

When insurance company only issues one adjustor to handle both drivers’ claims, there is a high risk of a conflict of interest. If this happens to you, contact a car accident attorney immediately to make sure you receive fair compensation.

Advantages of Having the Same Insurance

As unfortunate as getting into an accident is in the first place, there are a few advantages when the other driver has the same insurer as you.

For one, speaking to a representative at your own insurance company is always much easier and less of a hassle than contacting an adjustor from another insurer. Since you are a paying customer, adjustors will tend to provide quicker service than if …

Life Insurance for Federal Employees: Pros and Cons of FEGLI

Many U.S. Federal employees assume that Federal Employee Group Life Insurance (FEGLI) is the best plan available to them because they are automatically enrolled in the basic plan as soon as they become employed. Many even choose to add one of the additional three coverage options (Options A, B or C). But how do federal employees really know that they’re getting the most affordable plan and the best coverage available? Have they fully weighed the pros and cons of the plans? Are they aware of alternatives?

To help federal employees better understand FEGLI’s costs and benefits, we’ve come up with a list of FEGLI pros and cons. We hope that this list will help federal employees decide whether or not FEGLI is the best plan for their family.

Pros of FEGLI

  • Convenience – You’re automatically enrolled in basic coverage, regardless of your age or health. You don’t have to take any medical exams, and you’re guaranteed coverage as long as you are employed with the government and pay the premiums. The premiums are also automatically deducted from your paycheck, so you don’t have to worry about making payments.
  • Ability to choose coverage amount – The basic plan covers your salary rounded up to the nearest thousand plus $2,000, but you can choose to add more coverage. Option A adds $10,000 to your coverage, and Option B allows you to choose even more.
  • Family coverage – Option C allows you to cover your spouse and your children in addition to yourself. Some other plans required you to have separate policies for each person.

Cons of FEGLI

  • Cost – The additional coverage Options A, B and C are an additional cost to the basic plan and these premiums increase as you get older. The premiums for the coverage on your spouse and children are based on your age, not the age of your family members, so these costs also increase as you age. You’ll also have to pay an extra premium if you’d like to add Accidental Death and Dismemberment Insurance.
  • Coverage may be temporary – You will only be eligible while you work for the federal government or if you retire from the government position. If you choose to leave your job or are terminated, you lose your FELGI coverage.
  • Lack of options – Although FEGLI does offer a few options, it does not offer choices like Whole Life Insurance, Single Premium Whole Life or Universal Life Insurance. These policies offer features and benefits that are not included in FEGLI’s plans.
  • Difficult to increase coverage – You can decrease your coverage amount at any time, but you can only increase during open enrollment periods, by taking a physical exam, or with a “Qualifying Life Event”. The last open enrollment was almost 10 years ago in September 2004, so it’s unwise to wait for these open seasons to increase your coverage.

LA Insurance – Franchise Review

Insurance is a must these days. It has become a necessity. People with insurance sleep better because they know that they and their beneficiaries are covered should something happen. Almost everyone in the United States carry insurance which underscores its importance.

L.A. Insurance Agency is one of the most popular insurance companies in the country today. It is also one of the largest independent insurance agencies in Michigan, Colorado, Nevada, California, Georgia, Florida and many more. The company was founded by Anthony Yousif who started out as an insurance agent. The company headquarters in Michigan.

The company has grown so much that today they have more than 150 locations in the United States. Their primary offering is insurance for a variety of vehicles like motorcycles, cars and boats. They offer insurance for bodily injury liability, property damage liability, uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage and physical damage and recently started offering medical insurance to their clients.

The granting of franchises is the focus of the LA Insurance Agency® Franchise LLC. Individuals interested in being a franchisee will undergo an extensive background check. There is an investigative consumer report and an investigation in accordance with the anti-terrorism legislation of the United States. Among the things which will be examined is creditworthiness. Applicants might also be required to take a standardized Math and English exam. After the form has been filled out and submitted, a representative from the company will contact the interested party by phone or by email.

Aside from extensive credit checks, there are also financial requirements which must be complied with before becoming a franchisee of L.A. Insurance. Failure to comply with the minimum financial requirements will result in the rejection of an application.

While they do not publish the totals, there is the startup cost, franchise fee, minimum liquid assets and operational costs. The company takes care of the advertising, however, it is the franchisee’s responsibility to entice customers to but the insurance he or she is selling.

Once the application has been approved, there will be trainings to undergo. Staff and personnel will be taught how to use the software, as well as how to effectively sell insurance to increase customer base. The company is very hands-on with their franchisees.

When looking to start any business it is important, particularly considering today’s market, that you look for specific ways to cut minimize or reduce overhead and risk. Any business is going to have risk, but it is important to have a full understanding of the amount of investment, startup cost and “ROI” (Return on Investment).

Most people are not aware that 80{4917788a0bd7aa7369c2a945027b4fe6c9853cda4150a24fe1255b18ce3083dc} of ALL franchise endeavors fail in the first two to five years leaving large debts looming for years thereafter.

One way and in my opinion the best way to cut overhead, startup and investment cost is to take advantage of the new age of entrepreneurship and start a business from the comfort of your home. Opportunities have emerged in the online market that are creating millionaires …

Modern Financial Management Theories & Small Businesses

The following are some examples of modern financial management theories formulated on principles considered as ‘a set of fundamental tenets that form the basis for financial theory and decision-making in finance’ (Emery et al.1991). An attempt would be made to relate the principles behind these concepts to small businesses’ financial management.

Agency Theory

Agency theory deals with the people who own a business enterprise and all others who have interests in it, for example managers, banks, creditors, family members, and employees. The agency theory postulates that the day to day running of a business enterprise is carried out by managers as agents who have been engaged by the owners of the business as principals who are also known as shareholders. The theory is on the notion of the principle of ‘two-sided transactions’ which holds that any financial transactions involve two parties, both acting in their own best interests, but with different expectations.

Problems usually identified with agency theory may include:

i. Information asymmetry- a situation in which agents have information on the financial circumstances and prospects of the enterprise that is not known to principals (Emery et al.1991). For example ‘The Business Roundtable’ emphasised that in planning communications with shareholders and investors, companies should consider never misleading or misinforming stockholders about the corporation’s operations or financial condition. In spite of this principle, there was lack of transparency from Enron’s management leading to its collapse;

ii. Moral hazard-a situation in which agents deliberately take advantage of information asymmetry to redistribute wealth to themselves in an unseen manner which is ultimately to the detriment of principals. A case in point is the failure of the Board of directors of Enron’s compensation committee to ask any question about the award of salaries, perks, annuities, life insurance and rewards to the executive members at a critical point in the life of Enron; with one executive on record to have received a share of ownership of a corporate jet as a reward and also a loan of $77m to the CEO even though the Sarbanes-Oxley Act in the US bans loans by companies to their executives; and

iii. Adverse selection-this concerns a situation in which agents misrepresent the skills or abilities they bring to an enterprise. As a result of that the principal’s wealth is not maximised (Emery et al.1991).

In response to the inherent risk posed by agents’ quest to make the most of their interests to the disadvantage of principals (i.e. all stakeholders), each stakeholder tries to increase the reward expected in return for participation in the enterprise. Creditors may increase the interest rates they get from the enterprise. Other responses are monitoring and bonding to improve principal’s access to reliable information and devising means to find a common ground for agents and principals respectively.

Emanating from the risks faced in agency theory, researchers on small business financial management contend that in many small enterprises the agency relationship between owners and managers may be absent because the owners are also managers; and that …

The Case Against Medicare Supplement Insurance

There are some people who believe that Medicare Supplement Insurance may be a waste of money. Here is why some people believe that to be true.

Original Medicare is a government-run health insurance program for people aged 65 and older and for people who receive social security disability benefits for at least 24 months.

Original Medicare, it has been argued, is the best insurance plan in the united states and among the best in the world. The premiums for Medicare Part A (hospitalization) are most likely paid for you (by the taxes you paid) and the Part B premium is only $110 per month for people newly getting Medicare in 2010.

Your share of costs for Original Medicare are also relatively low. If you go in the hospital for example, each stay in the hospital is only $1,100 total for up to 60 days. If you go to the doctor or have tests done (such as an MRI), you normally only pay 20{4917788a0bd7aa7369c2a945027b4fe6c9853cda4150a24fe1255b18ce3083dc} of the Medicare Approved amount (an amount much lower than the “regular” or “customary” amount charged by most health care providers).

In addition to low costs, you have tremendous freedom in your access to health care. You can travel anywhere in the country and find a doctor or hospital that will accept Medicare.

So the question is, if Medicare alone is such a great plan, then why in the world would anyone buy Medicare Supplement Insurance? A Medicare Supplement Plan is an insurance plan sold by a private insurance company. The purpose of these plans is to “fill in the gaps” left by Medicare. This is why these plans are often referred to as “Medigap Plans.”

Following are three reasons why “The Case Against Medicare Supplement Insurance” should be thrown out of court.

1. Guaranteed Insurability

When you first qualify for Medicare (such as when you turn 65), you are “guaranteed issue” of a Medicare Supplement Policy. In most situations, and in most states, you could be in the advanced stages of some dread disease and a Medicare Supplement company must sell you insurance at the preferred rate.

Also, once you do qualify for a Medicare Supplement Plan, you can never lose your coverage, as long as you pay your premiums.

2. Protection Against the “Big Stuff”

If you have to pay a few dollar here or there for an xray, or a co-pay at your doctor, that is probably no big deal. But if you get into trouble, meaning if you get really sick, the original Medicare protection may not be as robust as you thought. $1,100 per stay at the hospital can add up very quickly, as can your share of expensive diagnostic exams.

The fact is, most of us don’t buy insurance for the little things, such as a ding on the car. But we do want insurance for when the “just in case” happens, such as a major car accident.

3. Affordability

Medicare Supplement Plans are very affordable for most people. As …

6 Creative Ways to Market Yourself As an Insurance Agent

Marketing yourself as a qualified insurance agent is one of the most important components to achieving success. For an agent, success is often measured by the number of clients who make a decision to buy the products and the services that you are offering to them. Proper marketing will help you increase your customer base, but you have to be creative about it in order to stand out from the rest of the agents whom you are competing against. Here are six clever and creative ways that you can make that happen.

Develop a client appreciation program.

When your clients feel like you appreciate their business, they will spread the word to their friends and family. Find a way to show your regular clients your appreciation (Thank You card periodically, free upgrade of service, etc.) and you’ll see your success grow.

Use direct mail.

Sending out postcards and letters to your current clients and potential leads will help expose your products and services to a wide audience. Don’t send out boring form letters, though. Be creative so you can get their attention.

Create a newsletter.

Newsletters are great ways to keep your clients up to date on the latest developments in the insurance industry. There may be new products on the market or important news that they will find interesting. Add a personal touch by adding something about your family or a special greeting. Send out the newsletter monthly or every other month, but be consistent about it either way.

Develop a website.

If you want to compete in today’s business world, it’s essential to have a website for your clients and potential leads to visit. However, it shouldn’t just be any website. You should hire a professional web designer to develop the website so it looks great. It’s also ideal to have a section of your site which explains the products and services that you offer as well as a link that customers can click on to get in contact with you.

Be responsive.

The quicker you respond to a client’s questions or a lead’s phone call, the more successful you will become. By responding quickly, you will show them that you appreciate their business rather than making them feel like a bother.

Publish articles online.

One way to market yourself as an insurance agent is by publishing relevant articles online. You can create a blog, post to ezines or other websites so you can get your name out there. When potential clients and existing customers do a Google search for your name, they will find all of the articles you have posted and they will be more likely to trust the information that you give them.

These are just a few of the ways you can market yourself as an insurance sales representative and increase your success as a result. Find a few agents in other areas who are successful and ask them for their secrets. If they don’t live in your area, they will be more likely …