Becoming a sales agent (article)

Susana Moleón Moya
Susana Moleón Moya
  • Updated

You want to access products from existing TourCMS suppliers via API, JavaScript widgets or use an agent login for directly entered bookings. So you can create a Travel Agent account through here. There is no charge for travel agents accounts.

TourCMS Marketplace for affiliates & travel agents

The TourCMS Marketplace prevents you having to deal with multiple operators’ and activity providers’ data formats, booking capabilities, web skills and technology budgets. Just connect to TourCMS API once.

Key benefits of TourCMS Marketplace

  • Get full content in one format - including company descriptions, tour descriptions, geocodes, images, dates, prices & availability, all via web based XML API
  • Easy to find new suppliers to work with - including how they like to commercially contract and their contact details.
  • Contract directly with suppliers – the TourCMS marketplace is just the data provider
  • Supports transactional model as well as other business models (PPC, pay per listing, affiliate, agent etc). Please innovate!
  • Marketplace travel agent interface includes booking details, click statistics etc
  • Create vouchers (in your own brand) that can be validated / redeemed by local suppliers directly (No more "Thank you for your booking, now print out this paper voucher")

Why is TourCMS great for accessing local tour data?

Three key reasons why we back our data:

  • We power hundreds of smaller local tour companies as a reservation system (TourCMS as a backoffice). When they stop selling on their own reservation system, you will know.
  • TourCMS point of sale app (ipad based) runs the point of sale for leading high volume day tour operators (2015). So for the mid-size companies, we have their real live data too.
  • TourCMS has direct connections (via TourCMS Sync service) with leading local tour operators (those with one million pax a year plus) - checking availability in real time. You send us an availability request, we send that request to a 3rd party reservation system and communicate the response back to you. You just need to connect to TourCMS API and you get this.

Collectively, this gives TourCMS the industry wide best availability data you could ever need...... and then add our great descriptions, images and retail sale price/net rate data

Can bookings be made with the suppliers?

Yes. Or you could choose not to, for example you could be running a PPC directory or you could send leads (TourCMS enquiries) to tour operators

There are several key methods to sending bookings to a supplier via the TourCMS Marketplace:

  • API
    You can create bookings or enquiries with suppliers via XML API. View documentation
  • Send the consumer traffic to the supplier's website
    Use the TourCMS tracking system (365 day cookie) and the consumer books direct with the supplier (affiliate style deals)
  • TourCMS booking engine
    You can incorporate a standard TourCMS booking engine into your site - with your design - but functionality decisions are made by the supplier. e.g. white water rafting companies tend to ask for emergency contact information and international tours ask for passport information. This booking engine can be iframed into your site.

Content usage options

You could just use the TourCMS Marketplace to find new suppliers or if connecting via API you can choose what fields and functionality to use

  • Availability - we always assume you are going to take availability from us
    • Use Tour Search API to do a simple upsell (Ask us what tour to add to a hotel booking on the 22nd of December 2018 for 2 adults - we can answer that in a few hundred milliseconds, from our cache)
    • Check availability API - ask us for live availability information for a specific tour, on a specific date, for a specific people combination
    • Hold a cache locally - i.e. take a replica of our dates, prices, availability into your own database, perhaps once every 24 hours
  • Bookings - send to us via API
  • Descriptions - use TourCMS sourced descriptions (in multiple languages) or use your own, if you wish. The API includes when the field was last updated, useful if you are maintaining your own descriptions, perhaps for SEO purposes. Serve the descriptions from TourCMS in live time or take the descriptions into your own local database
  • Images - serve TourCMS images (off Rackspace CDN) or take to your own hosting for direct hosting. We have mobile, regular and large sized images for most tours (large images ideal for slide shows)
  • Rates - take retail rates or net rates. Use the special offers information to know what the supplier needs help promoting. OR if you have externally managed rates, you can keep selling off them if you like, and just use TourCMS data for availability / descriptions and making bookings
  • Voucher redemption - tell TourCMS your barcode format for vouchers, make them redeemable by local suppliers using connected point of sale systems

See what API methods, fields and functionality were used to build

Two common approaches:

  1. Use List Tour API to list all the tours you can sell, then Show Tour API to grab the details and move to your own database. Use Dates and Deals to find approximate dates that the tour is on sale. Then use Check Availability API in live time to check real availability and commence booking
  2. Or, to serve data from TourCMS directly, rather than move to your own database, start with Search Tour API. This can return a few tours available on a certain date, in a certain location, ideal for mobile apps, upselling from a hotel booking etc. IF you are moving the data to your own database, as in (1), then our expectation is that you will do the search / results / upselling logic yourself, rather than using Tour Search API

Are there restrictions on use of the content?

Proposed usage should be indicated between you and the supplier in your own contracts. TourCMS is a technology service provider - the content does not belong to TourCMS

The quality and extent of data has been designed so that you can innovate with ease. For example we hold a number of different geocodes (start point, mid points, end points, hop on hop off bus stop points, hotel pickup points) that can be used creatively within mobile apps

What kind of suppliers are in the Marketplace?

There are many local day and multi-day operators. Because TourCMS is normally the end point (reservation system / point of sale) TourCMS tends to have the best supplier direct product in most leading city markets

Ideal if you are looking to upsell after a hotel / flight booking or building a mobile app for in destination use

Other sources:

  • is powered by TourCMS so their tours are available via the TourCMS Marketplace
  • Login to a trial travel agent account - go to left column - suppliers - Excel export. For an Excel of all suppliers in the TourCMS Marketplace at this time
  • If you are already connected to supply, login to a trial travel agent account - go to left column - tours - Excel export - and see the tours you are able to sell

Can we add our own suppliers?


  1. Ask them to sign up individually to their own TourCMS tour operator account (These are paid for accounts)
  2. TourCMS has a multi-supplier extranet service so with one TourCMS account you can create a service where suppliers can login, only see / edit their own tours, only see their own bookings. The TourCMS iPad Point of Sale (POS) app enables supplier access restrictions so suppliers can use that to access just their own tours / bookings as well as the web interface

All tours from these sources as well as other TourCMS accounts will be available in a single API result set so it is easy to integrate you own tours into tours provided by other TourCMS accounts

How do I pay the supplier / tour operator (or receive, if I am an affiliate)?

Retail travel agents: Most retail travel agents can book online with a supplier and if you are on 10% commission, you will pay 90% at point of booking, hence no commission payment needs to be transferred

Trusted travel agents can book, receive instant confirmation and pay later (e.g. on monthly invoice). This can either be via existing payment flow systems between travel agent and supplier. Or, if this is not in place, we suggest Trust My Travel who can handle this for you. One of their services is a split payment (so a single payment from a consumer can immediately go 10% to the travel agent, 90% to the supplier), fully integrated with TourCMS

Affiliates: At this point of time, affiliates should ask suppliers for their affiliate payment. Large scale affiliates should talk to Trust My Travel

How much does it cost?

Nothing! You can setup as a travel agent for free

What is the API development process?

For online travel agents (OTAs) doing an API integration:

  1. Sign up for a trial travel agent account
  2. Login, connect to the test operator (3930) which you can do from inside your trial travel agent account. You will use this account for development / testing. TEST BOOKINGS should only be made to the test operator/supplier account, not real trading accounts
  3. Find a supplier to connect their REAL account to you, so you can see their product / availability data. Ideally, if you are working with a supplier already, they will do this immediately. 
  4. Decide what data you want to take from TourCMS (see the section on content, above)
  5. Do the API integration development (we can give you access to the supplier side of the test operator account, if you want to see what the booking looks like in TourCMS)
  6. Ask TourCMS to sign off against the development checklist at the bottom of the useful information page
  7. Great! You are good to get trading!
  8. Now find suppliers & contract with them (or run existing contracts via TourCMS)
  9. Turn on for one or two suppliers for a few weeks, ensuring all is OK. YOU MUST contact any supplier before you turn on for bookings and wait for their sign off / agreement to go live
  10. Begin rollout to all TourCMS companies if that interests you. TourCMS can help you send an email to all suppliers in the TourCMS Marketplace, introducing your company to them

If you don't want to connect via API, we have affiliate links and widgets, and a retail travel agent extranet login as alternatives.