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The Travel Institute launches Paris Destination Specialist Course

The Travel Institute

Record number of travelers expected to say Bonjour! to City of Lights and Love as it hosts Summer Olympics and other major events

FRAMINGHAM, MA – The Travel Institute has released a newly created Paris Destination Specialist Course as traveler demand for the City of Lights and the City of Love is expected to reach record levels in 2024, hosting the 2024 Summer Olympics and Paralympics starting in late summer as well as several other major events throughout the year.

“With more than a million tourists expected to visit the French capital during the Summer Games alone and with 100 million anticipated to visit Paris and France more broadly throughout 2024,1 this timely course fills the void for travel agents looking for a Paris-specific, comprehensive course to meet traveler demand and exceed their expectations,” explained Guida Botelho, CTIE, senior director of education for The Travel Institute, adding that the course synthesizes countless hours of research, validated with expert advice and opinions, to enable agents to create “itineraries of a lifetime” for clients.

The Paris course is the first of many new destination specialist courses the non-profit travel education leader plans to release in 2024, citing results from its 2023 Changing Face of Travel Agents survey in which 70% of agents said destination knowledge tops their list for 2024 training needs and also indicated agents who specialize in destinations average 17.8% more in annual income. 

Well beyond the Eiffel Tower and other iconic attractions, Paris is a 41-square-mile city rich in culture, history, architecture, fashion, arts, cuisine and wine. The city is expected to attract even more travelers as it also hosts the 150th anniversary of impressionism art, the Notre Dame Cathedral reopening, and as France celebrates the 80th anniversary of D-Day in Normandy. Through the course, agents gain insight on the must-see attractions and less-traveled “hidden gems” available for a nuanced Parisian experience. Curriculum includes: 

  • day and evening activities and entertainment options including day trips from Paris; 
  • custom tours for travelers with special interests such as art, food or shopping; 
  • descriptions for various dining categories; 
  • cultural considerations, celebrations and events; and  
  • popular attractions in each of Paris’ 20 arrondissements.

In addition, agents will gain practical knowledge including passport and visa requirements; transportation options within the city and surrounding areas; important distinctions in France’s hotel rating system; geography and climate; contacts and resources for travelers in need; and more. The Paris course incorporates industry insights, a desk reference guide, along with tips designed to ensure traveler satisfaction. Delivered through an interactive, best-practice e-learning platform, this self-paced, online program also includes progress quizzes to affirm learning and further enhance retention. Lastly, the Paris course augments The Travel Institute’s Central Europe course, which offers an overview of Paris as well as many other iconic cities in the region as it covers the countries of Belgium, France, Germany, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Switzerland, and The Netherlands.

“We have enjoyed a longstanding partnership with The Travel Institute. Their Destination and Lifestyle Specialist courses provide valuable content that can’t be found elsewhere,” shared Lisa Swanson, CTIE, travel development & project consultant with The Auto Club Group. “Their resources and certifications have been instrumental in developing our travel agents’ destination and niche market knowledge, complementing our expertise development trips,” she added.

Botelho is not the only one anticipating Paris’ increased traveler demand this year; France is betting big on tourism in 2024 with significant infrastructure projects to accommodate increased tourism.2 Students who successfully complete the Paris Destination Specialist Course, pass their online exam and submit either a destination report or an experiential checklist, earn standing as a Certified Paris Travel Specialist and, as applicable, continuing education units, or CEUs, toward maintaining certification from The Travel Institute. Both designations are used by agents to further market experience and expertise as a travel professional. The new Paris travel specialist course is also available at no charge for The Travel Institute’s Premium Access subscribers, who regularly enjoy advance releases of new curriculum from the global education leader.


1 Travel Tomorrow
2 CN Traveler

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