Travel Leaders

2014 Franchise 500
At a Glance

Products & Services: Travel agency

Number of Locations: 357

Total Investment: $3.6K - $15.4K

Founded: 1888

Began Franchising: 1984

About Travel Leaders

In 1872, Georges Nagelmackers began his company, Wagons-Lits, to install sleeping compartments in European trains. A few years later, he created the Orient Express. In 1888, Ward G. Foster founded Ask Mr. Foster, a travel agency based in St. Augustine, Florida.

Each company expanded--Wagonlit throughout Europe and Africa, Ask Mr. Foster across the United States and Europe. Carlson Companies Inc. purchased Ask Mr. Foster in 1979; the company changed its name to Carlson Travel Network in 1990. Carlson Travel Network and Wagonlit Travel merged in 1997, forming Carlson Wagonlit Travel. Then in 2008, that company joined with Travel Leaders and Tzell Travel Group to form what is known today as the Travel Leaders franchise.

Franchise Units

Year U.S. Canadian International Company Owned
2013 339 0 1 17
2012 340 0 0 16
2011 365 0 0 25
2010 362 0 0 29
Where Seeking Franchisees: Franchisor is seeking new franchise units in the U.S.,Western Europe.
Direct Capital

Startup Costs, Ongoing Fees and Financing

Total Investment: $3,600 - $15,440
Franchise Fee: $0 - $1,500
Ongoing Royalty Fee: $474-995/mo.
Term of Franchise Agreement: 5 years, renewable
Financial Requirements
Net Worth: $750,000 - $1,000,000
Liquid Cash Available: $500,000
27% of all franchisees own more than one unit. Number of employees needed to run franchised unit: 10. Absentee ownership of franchise is NOT allowed. (100% of current franchisees are owner/operators).

How This Franchise Supports Franchisees

Training: Available at headquarters: 3 days. At franchisee's location: Varies. Workshops, 1-2 days each; online training
Ongoing Support: Newsletter, Meetings, Toll-free phone line, Internet, Field operations/evaluations
Marketing Support: Co-op advertising, Ad slicks, National media, Regional advertising,

Franchise Ranking History

Franchise 500®: #207 (2014), #267 (2013), #187 (2012), #287 (2011), #400 (2010),
Low-Cost: #64 (2011),