What do Travel Agencies, Accountants, and the French have in Common?

IMG_1198-1A Beaufort, NC sunset

Sometimes it’s pretty hard for folks outside of the accounting profession to see the value of accounting. Travel agents and others who are immersed in the business of travel or who spend much of their time traveling are particular challenges for we accountants.

Helping you see the value and importance of accounting is what I see as one of my most important jobs.

It’s a tough one, though.

To make it a little easier, I like to find interesting connections between the worlds of travel and accounting.

Sounds like a stretch, doesn’t it? Sometimes, but not always.

Take France for instance. [Read more...]

Hey! When do I get paid? Travel Agents, Assets, and AR

PolyFamily-634Enjoying an evening at the Polynesian Resort, Walt Disney World

One of the quirks of accounting for travel agencies is a little thing called an asset, and specifically an asset known as accounts receivable… or more affectionately, AR.

Why is AR quirky for travel agencies?

But first, what is AR?

AR is an asset.

Well, then what is an asset?

Remember my definition of assets from 5 Easy Ways for Travel Agents to Learn the Accounting Language (what am I saying, of course you do):

An asset is a thing, a resource. It is something you control – tangible or intangible – that brings value now and in the future.

Cash is an asset.

It’s a thing. You control it, and it will be worth something to you in the future. [Read more...]

Thinking about Leisure…

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Sunrise, Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina

Travel professionals deal in leisure…whether we be travel agents, travel writers, location independent entrepreneurs, or a dozen other types of folk who travel regularly or set their sights to.

But do we understand leisure?

Do we really get it?

“Leisure has had a bad press. For the puritan it is the source of vice; for the egalitarian a sign of privilege. The Marxist regards leisure as the unjust surplus, enjoyed by the few at the expense of the many. Nobody in a democracy is at ease with leisure, and almost every person, however little use he may have for his own time, will say that he works hard for a living – curious expression, when the real thing to work for is dying.” – R. Scruton

Maybe we should think on leisure just a little more.

What Do Tax Deductions and Cruise Ships Have in Common?

Castaway
The Disney Dream at Castaway Cay

What do tax deductions and cruise ships have in common?

…a high degree of complication.

Cruise ships are like floating cities with thousands of people, tons and tons of food, thousands of gallons of drink, and exceedingly complicated machinery.

Tax deductions are just complicated.

Cruise-related tax deductions are more complicated than many others. Read on for the scoop…

Filing your taxes is likely the most familiar accounting task you’ll face, and it comes with a tremendous amount of stress for many travel pros.

April 15th is just days away. [Read more...]

5 Easy Ways for Travel Agents to Learn the Accounting Language

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Another Beaufort, NC sunset

Learning the basics of accounting is no different that picking up some key phrases from another language before traveling internationally.

It really should be a breeze for the travel pro!

You wouldn’t set off to France without a bit of French or to Russia without some basic Russian phrases, would you?

Of course not!

You shouldn’t set off on the entrepreneurial adventure of building a travel agency without knowing a little of the language of business:

Accounting.

Accounting…ugh!

Exciting, I know…but, that little bit of accounting will help you immeasurably in understanding the details of running your business. [Read more...]

Just What is Accounting Anyway?

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Sunset in Beaufort, North Carolina

You love travel.

That’s probably the main reason you became a travel agent, isn’t it?

I bet sometimes you enjoy your job so much that it’s not even work anymore (especially when you’re on that next Jamaican FAM)!

Why should you care about accounting?

Accounting…ugh

Mere mention of the word can bring about a visceral negative reaction in most travel agents. At the word “accounting,” many travel-lovers completely tune out. It’s as if the person talking about accounting is speaking a different language.

And that’s exactly what the accounting is, a different language.

Accounting…different language…foreign country…international travel…it just doesn’t quite work, does it, making that connection between accounting and travel? [Read more...]