Is InteleTravel a Legit MLM or Pyramid Scheme [Review]

InteleTravel is a travel host agency that relies on a network of independent distributors to market its services. Chances are, you might already know someone who is a sales representative of the company and has pitched the idea to you.

Now, here’s the big question: Is InteleTravel a legit MLM or a pyramid scheme? We’ll get into that. And hey, we’ll also fill you in on a better way to make money from home.

Who Am I?

Hey there! I’m Benjamin, the person behind MLM Scam Insider. I used to be a sales rep at an MLM company, so I’ve seen both the good and bad sides of the MLM world.

After college, I joined HSBC as a relationship manager. Unfortunately, I got laid off due to some silly mistakes, and I felt pretty hopeless. During this tough time, a friend suggested I join his team.

He flaunted his success on Instagram with a Lamborghini (later, I discovered he had just rented it), so I believed I could attain the same. I purchased a starter kit from him and became a distributor. However, being a sales representative at an MLM company wasn’t what I had anticipated – it felt like a pyramid scheme. Uncomfortable with the idea of pitching to my friends and family, I only managed to sell a few starter kits.

Fortunately, I discovered how to make money blogging during Covid. So I soon quit my job as a sales rep and focused on my blog about budgeting, later selling it for $170k. Now, I’m a full-time internet entrepreneur running several blogs, including this one.

My goal is to provide you with honest reviews of various MLM companies, using my personal experiences to help you understand what’s really happening. I have connections with friends in the network marketing industry, and my team and I have spoken with different MLM distributors to give you the inside scoop.

What is InteleTravel?

InteleTravel is a company that originated in the US and has recently expanded into the British market, becoming a member of ABTA last year. ABTA represents travel agents in the United Kingdom.

Although InteleTravel has not yet announced that they hold an ATOL license in the UK, they are actively working towards obtaining one. ATOL stands for Air Travel Organiser’s Licence.

InteleTravel claims that anyone can start their own travel agency from home and earn a commission on all bookings. Whether you want to earn a living selling vacations, operate a side business booking trips for friends and family, or simply book your own trips, InteleTravel asserts that it’s achievable with their system.

InteleTravel’s system has been compared to similar systems in the multi-level marketing industry, such as World Ventures.


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Who’s the Founder?

James Ferrara is the mastermind behind the innovative vacation package business model that defines the company today.

James Ferrara

James has had a diverse career, dabbling in various industries. He pursued Real Estate Development at New York University from 1986 to 1988 and holds a BA in Theatre Studies and Anthropology.

Despite his varied educational background, he ventured into the business world and launched his first company in 1990.

InteleTravel officially started its operations in 1992 under James’s leadership. His approach to running the business was unconventional compared to others in the industry.

He didn’t believe in setting sales quotas for his team or mandating specific educational qualifications.

However, proper accreditation was a non-negotiable requirement for his representatives.

Is InteleTravel An MLM?

InteleTravel isn’t an obvious MLM, but to join them, you have to go through their MLM marketing arm, PlanNet Marketing.

PlanNet Marketing

Here’s the catch:

Like many MLMs, PlanNet Marketing doesn’t offer enough earnings to justify the investment needed. Most PlanNet Marketing reps (who may or may not also be InteleTravel agents) didn’t earn anything in 2019—no commissions or overrides. The average yearly income for a PlanNet Marketing independent rep at the entry level was just $140.57.

When I asked InteleTravel if I could sign up without going through PlanNet Marketing, they said no, claiming registration for Independent InteleTravel Agents is closed.

Here’s their reply to my email:

Thank you for your interest in Currently, registration to become an Independent InteleTravel Agent is closed. After 25 years in business we are pleased to have reached our optimum size as a travel sales network and are not accepting any more applications. InteleTravel has always been proud of our Agent training & Customer Service standards, so to maintain the highest level of service we are closing our new Agent registration until further notice.

We recommend keeping in touch with the person that told you about our program so you can be notified when it becomes available.

But that’s not entirely true. You can still sign up through PlanNet Marketing—it’s the only way to join InteleTravel. This is a major warning sign.

If you want to avoid the MLM aspect and only sign up for InteleTravel, you might still be pushed (depending on the rep you’re dealing with) to also sell InteleTravel travel agencies through PlanNet Marketing. A PlanNet Marketing rep will give you their personal page to sign up, like this:

PlanNet Marketing sign up page

The fine print in the image above shows that you can only join InteleTravel through a PlanNet Marketing rep account first.

Some InteleTravel agents I spoke with (whose names I won’t mention for privacy reasons) said you don’t have to sign up for PlanNet Marketing to sell ITAs. But when you join InteleTravel, you become part of someone’s downline, whether or not you’re involved in the MLM side. When host agencies use these MLM marketing arms, they’re called “MLM hybrids.”

An MLM structure is quite simple. Imagine it like a triangle. Everyone under you in the triangle is part of your direct downline, and you get commissions from their sales.

While InteleTravel isn’t technically an MLM, it raises concerns for us because of its reliance on PlanNet Marketing’s MLM aspect.

This might be more detail than you wanted, but InteleTravel is one of a few host agencies that partner with MLM marketing branches. We want you to know! (Archer Travel, which affiliates through Evolution’s MLM marketing branch, is another example.)

In one word, InteleTravel is just another MLM in disguise. 

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Is InteleTravel A Pyramid Scheme?

No, InteleTravel is not a pyramid scheme. It is a legitimate company that has been helping people plan their trips for over 25 years.

InteleTravel does not sell tangible products but instead partners with various travel providers to offer affordable vacation packages. These providers include well-known names in the industry such as Club Med, Sandals, Hilton, W Hotels, Travel Insured, Travel Impressions, Funjet Vacations, Disney Vacations, Avis, Hertz, and Budget.

Now, you might be wondering, what is a pyramid scheme? A pyramid scheme is a fraudulent business model that promises members money or services in exchange for recruiting new members. It is unsustainable, and often a scam, because those at the bottom end up losing money.

Pyramid schemes require members to pay a membership fee, and the company running the scheme rewards members by sharing a portion of the funds raised from each additional member they recruit. The scheme is only profitable for the directors at the top of the pyramid since they receive a portion of the payments from every newly recruited member.

Pyramid schemes almost never offer valuable goods or services, and their only source of revenue comes from recruiting new members and soliciting more money from current members. The scam can only continue if there are new recruits and other sources of income, but it will eventually fail, leaving most members at the lowest level of the pyramid to lose their money.

Learn more about the differences between MLM and pyramid scheme

InteleTravel’s Compensation Plan

InteleTravel’s way of earning money differs from traditional jobs. They’re linked with PlanNet Marketing and operate on a commission-based system.

Here’s how it operates: When someone purchases through InteleTravel, the company gets a commission ranging from 8% to 16% of the sale price. As an InteleTravel representative, you can earn 70% to 80% of that commission, which translates to 8% to 16% of the sale price.

Let’s simplify with an example: If a product sells for $2,000, the company earns a $160 commission (8% of $2,000). As a rep, you’d typically get 80% of that, which equals $128 ($160 x 80%).

Remember, actual earnings vary based on your sales and commission rates. But this example offers insight into earning potential with InteleTravel.

How Much Can You Make with InteleTravel?

In the U.S., InteleTravel’s compensation plan focuses on recruiting new members (ITAs), with selling travel being secondary. But what are agents actually making? Here are the figures from their 2020 disclosure statement:

  • 77.40% of InteleTravel members didn’t earn any money throughout the year.
  • 97.68% of InteleTravel members earned an average of $154.14

For more details, you can read the infographic (below) from their MLM marketing arm, PlanNet Marketing:

nteletravel/PlanNet Marketing 2020 Income Disclosure Statement

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How Much Does It Cost to Join InteleTravel?

It costs $179.99 to become an InteleTravel agent through their MLM marketing arm PlanNet Marketing.

As an agent, you’ll get access to a range of InteleTravel tools, including a personalized booking website, a marketing strategy, business stationery, etc. 

In addition, you have to pay a monthly administrative fee of $39.95. Apart from that, there’s also a monthly PlaNet Marketing administrative fee of $19.95. These add up to a total cost $59 per month.

What Are Customers Saying About InteleTravel?

At the time of this writing, InteleTravel has a total of 447 ratings and reviews on Trustpilot. 52% of those are a full 5 stars, while 43% of customers gave them a 1 star.

One of the recent reviews, posted on September 21, comes from Torrie Sullivan, who gave InteleTravel a single star rating. Torrie claims that InteleTravel is a pyramid scheme, and that their customer service is lacking. She also mentioned that commission payments have not been forthcoming.

So, if you’re considering InteleTravel for your travel needs, you may want to check out what other customers are saying on Trustpilot before making a decision.

InteleTravel Customer Review on Trustpilot

Pros of InteleTravel MLM

  • InteleTrust Guarantee: InteleTravel offers a unique guarantee. If you’re not satisfied within the first month, you can get a full refund, no questions asked. You can also get your registration fee back within 14 days of signing up, minus any earned commission.

  • Suitable for Travelers: InteleTravel caters to travelers, providing discounts on hotels, flights, and guaranteed cruise cabins. It’s an ideal opportunity for travel enthusiasts.

  • Good BBB Rating: With an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau, InteleTravel proves its reliability and trustworthiness over its long market presence.

  • Educational Resources: InteleTravel offers various educational resources, including webinars and boot camps, to enhance your travel expertise. This commitment to training sets it apart from other MLMs, which often lack such support.

Cons of InteleTravel MLM

  • Low Income Potential: The MLM industry can be tough, with a high failure rate. According to InteleTravel’s income statement, 77.4% of their sales rep didn’t make a penny in 2020. 

  • Intense Competition: With the rise of independent travel booking and competition from other MLMs and discount travel sites, finding customers beyond friends and family can be challenging.

  • Cult-Like Culture: InteleTravel, like many MLMs, fosters a culture that discourages critical thinking and isolates dissenters, leading to devastating losses for those who leave.

  • Recruiting is Essential: Success often hinges on recruiting, with most income streams tied to bringing in new members.

Is InteleTravel a Scam?

No, InteleTravel is not a scam. It is a legitimate MLM company. However, it’s not a good money-making option.

It can be tough at the start when you’re trying to find people to join and build your team, especially when you have to ask friends and family to join.

Another thing to consider is that your upline might push you to buy more business support materials, even if you’re struggling to get people to join.

Unfortunately, the stats show that you’re likely to end up losing money.

According to the FTC, 99% of people who join an MLM either break even or lose money.

It’s no wonder many people feel pressured to succeed and end up leaving these MLM businesses.

Instead of getting into MLM, you might consider starting your own online business. This way, you can pick what you want to sell and have more say in how much you make and when you work.

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Other MLM Opportunities

Here are the other MLM companies we have reviewed:


Amway (Full Review)


Market America (Full Review)


Primerica (Full Review)


Herbalife (Full Review)


Mary Kay (Full Review)


Vector Marketing (Full Review)


Enagic (Full Review)


World Financial Group (Full Review)


Nu Skin (Full Review)


Q Sciences (Full Review)

See our list of the best MLM Companies.

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