The home agent movement picked up a lot of steam in 2002 because, for many agents, going home was the only way to survive. The combination of airline base-commission cuts, Internet competition and the dramatic drop in travel following 9/11 meant that agents had to cut costs dramatically, and being a home-based, hosted agency proved a quick way to reduce overhead. But now - 11 years later - when Travel Weekkly asked why agents chose to be home-based, they cited the need for flexible hours and the desires to be one's own boss and avoid a long commute. And almost half of home-based agents surveyed had never known any other operating model; they have been home-based for as long as they have been travel agents. Despite the changes that occur among the individual respondents that result in an ever-evolving "big picture" of travel retailing, the formula for success has not really changed much in decades: Successful agents very carefully select only suppliers they can count on to deliver a top-notch experience and then give them enough business to be able to reach commission override thresholds. And in doing so, these agents become so important to their suppliers that if a client needs special attention or has a complaint that needs immediate resolution, the agent has the leverage with the supplier to resolve the situation in the client's favor (which, in turn, more than justifies the service fee). Get the full report at Travel Weekly