Tourism Distribution: Managing the Travel Intermediary
OverviewTravel distribution has become one of the most talked about subjects in the tourism industry since technological advances have opened new channels and opportunities for suppliers of tourism, travel intermediaries and consumers. Not only have technological advances brought about dramatic changes, so too has the consolidation of organization, both in the airline and travel industries. These changes are transforming the industry and while travel agents will remain a key player in distribution, their fundamental role will probably change from supplier based intermediaries to consumer-based consultants. This book is about travel distribution, and while it does not pretend to predict the future in this dynamic environment it provides the framework within which travel distribution takes place. The principles of tourism distribution are discussed and the environment in which the travel industry operates. Development of the industry from a historical perspective as well as a present overview and future trends are described. The role of the travel agent and tour wholesaler is discussed from a management perspective and the various management functions are explained in the context of a travel organization. Examples from the local travel industry are included as well as comprehensive case studies that illustrate the theories.