Travel & Tourism Glossary

Modern tour operators need to establish connections with industry partners. Make sure you are using the right vocabulary.





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A

ACCOMMODATION
Refer to an hotel or other places that provides room for rent.

ACTIVITY PROVIDER
A person located in a tourist destination who provides a unique, local activity for a visitor to do while on vacation. Examples of such activities include kayaking, bike riding or arts and crafts, among others.

ADD-ON
An extra, optional service that travelers can purchase during the bookings process.

ADVENTURE INDUSTRY
Adventure industry refers to tour operators specialized in outdoor activities like trekking, white water rafting, MTB etc… A major trade organisation for this industry is the Adventure Travel Trade Association.

AFFILIATE
A business partner within a tourist destination. For instance, a hotel might have an affiliate restaurant. The restaurant is owned and operated by the same company but is managed by different people.

APP
An app is a small software program that can be downloaded to a smart phone or tablet. It allows users to interact with businesses, play games and perform tasks on their mobile device. Apps are typically available either for free or for purchase on the Apple App store or the Android App Market.

AUTOMATED PAYMENTS
Invoicing and lost payments can be automated by Rezdy’s marketplace. Automated payment is a service where commission fee payments between tour operators and agents are automatically managed.

AGENT
A business that is mainly focused on reselling tours and activities in exchange for commission fees.

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B

BARGAIN SITE
This is a website where you can get discounts on travel events, such as tickets for shows and tour opportunities.

BED & BREAKFAST
Bed & Breakfast accommodations are small, typically local establishments. They are often run by an innkeeper and offer a home-away-from home feel for visitors. Expect cozy accommodations and home-cooked meals.

BLACKOUT DATES
A day that you are not operating your tours. A moderrn booking software should allow you to quickly and visually update your calendar if necessary. so your visitors can’t book online for the day.

BLOGGER
A blogger is person who write a blog. A blog is a website where people regularly publish information, either personal or professional.

BUSINESS DIRECTORY
This is a directory that lists all of the different businesses that are available in a particular area. Most directories include references to all different types of businesses, from tourism-related businesses to service providers such as laundromats, mechanics and restaurants.

BOOKING
A booking is referring to a successful sale in the tourism industry. The accompanying payment can either be fully, partly or completed at fulfillment of the booking.

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C

CATEGORY (synonym to industry)
Refer to the industry or type of activity a tour operator does, for example scuba diving, hot air balloon or city tours.

CHANNEL MANAGER
This is software that allows a company to give access to his inventories of hotel room or tours availability to distributors.

CHARTER
Chartering a tour, a bus, a boat or other means that a group will make one bookings and do not wish to share this other people. Many tour operators offer daily tours than can be chartered for a fix price and include a maximum of persons.

CLOUD COMPUTING
Cloud computing is a way of managing a computer’s data. Previously most data was stored on a local server, but using cloud computing all different types of data can be managed on a remote server that can be accessed by a desktop, laptop or mobile device.

COMMISSION
A commission is a percentage of your incomes that an agent will charge tour operators to send customers. A common practice in the tour & activity industry is to pay from 10% and up to 30% commission to resellers. You should not pay commission to software providers (booking system) as it will reduce your profitability and limit your growth. Paying commission to agents is a highly effective way to reach customers that you would not be able to reach with limited marketing resources.

CONCIERGE (HOTEL)
An independent person, reselling tours and activities in a hotel lobby.

COUNCIL
A governing body within a community. Most places that are popular travel destinations have councils to help manage the tourism industry in that area.

CURRENCY
The form of money that a person uses in order to pay. People from different countries typically have different currencies.

CUSTOMER SUPPORT
A network that allows a customer to get the help they need, when they need it and in the medium that they require. Most popular customer support options include phone and online support.

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D

DAILY DEALS
A new way of doing business which promotes one particular sale or deal on a given day. This deal is often disbursed via e-mail or text messaging, and is only good for 12-24 hours.

DEFERRED PAYMENT PROCESSING
If you don’t want to use a merchant account, you can use a deferred payment processing system in conjunction with your Point Of Sales (POS) system. In this case, the customer inputs data which you receive manually. Their data doesn’t pass through a gateway, so you can inspect all orders and connect them. This method of credit card processing works best for weather-dependent businesses where there are a high amount of cancellations due to bad weather.

DESTINATION
The place to which someone is going. It’s an area, a place visited by tourists. Destinations are usually organised with professional private and government organisations like visitors information centre, destination management organisation (public) or destination management company (private) whose goal is to promote the destination. Such companies can be for, or non for profit.
For example, a country like Australia can be considered a destination, but we split all destinations by a large number of sub destinations: about 100 in the case of Australia.

DESTINATION MANAGEMENT COMPANY
Business that specialized in promoting and very often reselling tours and accommodations related to the specific area where they operate from. They offer an advanced knowledge of a destination.

DESTINATION MANAGEMENT ORGANISATION (DMO)
Non for profit association or governmental organisation designed to promote a destination.

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E

E-MAIL
A way to communicate over the web with clients and customers. Stands for electronic-mail.

EVENT ORGANISER
A person who is trained and qualified to organize a particular event for a community, company or hotel property. For instance, an even organizer may create a luau for a Hawaiian hotel.

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F

FACEBOOK
The most popular social networking sites that allows users to create a profile, post status updates, photos and videos and connect with their friends and businesses.

FAMIL
Short for ‘familiarisation’, a famil is a planned visit offering invited members of the media and trade industries an opportunity to experience the tourism products, attractions, and experiences a particular destination markets. The success of this relies on support from the State’s tourism operators.

FARE AGGREGATOR
This is a tool that allows a person to see what the different prices are for one particular service from many different companies at the same time. The most popular fare aggregators highlight flight, hotel and car prices.

FREE INDEPENDANT TRAVELLER (FIT)
A person or a couple that is not travelling with a group.

FULFILLMENT
The customer has done the activity or participated in the tour, the service has been provided.

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G

GLOBAL DISTRIBUTION SYSTEM
A global distribution system is a computer reservation system that allows a travel company to manage its reservations while at the same time communicate with its customers. GDS are used by travel agent to access flight, accomodations, care rental, tours and activities.

GROUND OPERATOR
See Inbound Tour Operator or Destination Management Company.

GUIDE
A professional that is accompaning a tour.

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H

HOTEL
A popular accommodation choice made by travelers across the globe. Hotels typically offer one-room accommodations but many also have upgrades to suites available. They are often larger places to stay that offer more amenities such as pools, gyms and restaurants.

HOSTEL
Known as an inexpensive place to stay while traveling abroad, hostels are often geared toward the young crowd. Many people bunk with other people that they do not know in order to keep the costs down.

HOSTING
A hosting provider provides a place on the web for a business to place their website.

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I

INBOUND TOUR OPERATOR
An inbound tour operator is specialised in providing tours to overseas travellers visiting a destination, sometimes by operating the tour themselves, or through established partnerships with local suppliers.

INDUSTRY EVENT ORGANISER
This is a professional or an organisation in the tourism industry who is experienced in creating events for travel companies, hotels, restaurants and other hospitality companies.

INSTAGRAM
A social networking site that allows users to post vintage-looking photographs to explain where they are at, what they are eating and what they like at any given time.

INVOICE
An invoice, bill or tab is a document issued by a agent to a tour operator, relating to a sale transaction and indicating the tours, quantities, and agreed prices for tours or activities the agent had provided the tour operator.

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J

JET SKI
An activity that many waterfront travel companies offer their visitors. People can ride on Jet Ski mobiles, allowing them to cruise quickly and efficiently across the water. People enjoy jet skiing on large lakes and oceans.

JOINT FARE
This is a fee that is charged to a traveler who will be taking a flight that utilizes more than one airline. For instance, if a traveler is taking a flight that has a connector, the second flight may be with a different airline. The joint fare is the cost for the entire flight.

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K

KAYAK
A popular travel activity that is offered at many destinations that are located near the water. Kayaking businesses can benefit from online booking systems so that future visitors can reserve their kayak excursions before they even arrive. Kayak is also an online travel agency specialised in airfares.

KEYCARD
Typically travelers will have a keycard device in order to get into the room they are renting at a specific hotel or bed and breakfast. The keycard is often electronic, allowing them to swipe it like a credit card in order to gain access to the room. Travelers are advised to keep their keycards in a safe and secure location while they enjoy the local activities.

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L

LANAI
A lanai is a balcony, porch or patio in Hawaii and other tropical destinations. It is often described as a top class amenity at the hotels and resorts that have them, as many people want a private lanai to enjoy the beautiful views.

LANGUAGE
The different words and phrases that a person speaks depending on the part of the world that they are from. The best online reservation software offers different language options.

LEISURE TRAVEL
Travel that is done for pleasure rather than for business. Most people who are taking leisure travel tips will want to book several different tours and excursions during their trip in order to enjoy the sights, sounds and flavor of the area they are traveling to.

LIMO
A large, typically expensive, car that people use to get to and from a particular destination. Many people rent limousines to take them to the airport or night clubs, and others rent limos to get to their excursions in a particular travel destination. It is an exciting and relaxing way to travel.

LOCATIONS
Destinations that people choose for their vacations. Many people want waterfront locations, downtown locations and family-friendly locations for their travel experiences.

LOW SEASON
A less popular time to visit a particular destination, often in the bad-weather months. Rates are often cheaper during the low season.

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M

MARKUP
The process by which a rack rate is increased in order to accommodate for an increased interest in an activity or accommodation during a certain period of time when demand is typically higher. For instance, many hotels and airlines increase their prices during peak travel times such as Thanksgiving, Christmas and spring break. See yield management.

MERCHANT ACCOUNT
To accept online payment, you need to ask your bank for a merchant account. See PAYMENT GATEWAY.

METRICS
A way of measuring a certain amount of activity on a specific online platform. For instance, a tour guide operator might be interested in how visitors they receive per month on their company website, or how many times per day people interact with them on Twitter.



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N

NATURAL ATTRACTION
A tourist attraction in a particular area that is a natural phenomenon. Popular natural attractions include oceans, beaches, lakes, mountains, hiking trails and waterfalls. Many tour companies work to arrange specialized excursions to natural attractions in an area.

NATURE CRUISE
A tourist activity that takes visitors by boat to view natural sights, such as waterfalls, lakes, sunsets, rivers and jungle areas.

NETT RATE
The minimum amount that tour suppliers can sell a tourism product for and still make a profit.

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O

ONLINE BOOKING SYSTEM
A reservation software that allows clients to book online directly with your company. For distribution, see channel manager.

ONLINE TRAVEL AGENCY (OTA)
An online travel agency can be utilized by a traveler in order to book everything they need for their trip in one place. This can include making hotel reservations, flight reservations and in-destination reservations like tours, attractions, activities.

ONLINE RESERVATION SYSTEM
A system that allows a customer to make a reservation online and receive an immediate confirmation.

OVERBOOKING
Your tours are overbooked when you have more participants that you can really accept. Over bookings have be used by airlines for decades as it is well known that a small percentage of travellers will miss their plane. In the tours and activities industry, overbookings generally mean a lot of work to cancel, reschedule and refund frustrated customers. An clear cancellation policy is preferrable to overbookings.

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P

PASSENGER MANIFEST
A list of customers that are participating to your tour. ideally printable and mobile friendly.

PASSENGER WEIGHT
An helicopter or a plane might not be able to carry it’s full seat capacity due to weight limitations or fuel requirements. In some countries or industry, it is a legal requirement to ask the exact weight of your passengers (sorry ladies) and to have it onboard in your passenger manifest. Specialised reservation system integrate this constraint to avoid overbookings.

PAYMENT GATEWAY
A software used to charge customers credit card and send money directly to your bank account. See MERCHANT ACCOUNT.

PAYMENT OPTIONS
The options that a business makes available to its customers in order for them to make a payment.

PINTEREST
A social networking system that allows a user to bookmark sites of interest on the web and showcase it to their friends with a visually-appealing image.

POINT OF SALE (POS) SYSTEM
This is a system where a computer replaces a cash register. It records transactions, accepts credit and debit card data, tracks inventory and records employee hours.

PROMO CODES
Promotional codes that a customer can input during the check out process in order to receive a discount.

PROPERTY MANAGEMENT SYSTEM
This is a software that manages rental properties for a vacation company. For instance, a person who owns several beach houses available for rental can use this system to manage rooms availability.

PRIVATE RATE
An exclusive rate available to all Agents.

PREFERRED RATE
An exclusive rate available to agents, tour operators have a preferred relationship with.

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Q

QUOTE
The price approximation that a business might provide to a future traveler so they can budget for the services they want when they reach their destination. Many inbound tour companies will provide price quotes to large groups who might want to travel to their area.

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R

RETAIL RATE
The amount the customer pays for a tourism product.

REVIEWS WEBSITE
This is a website on the Internet where customers can post reviews of their experiences at particular travel-related businesses. Positive reviews can have a big impact on business growth.

REAL-TIME BOOKING
An option for travelers to book their trips in real-time. It is particularly useful on the business end because it allows a manager or operator to choose when and where they want to offer reservations.

RESOURCE
Vehicles, gear, materials, etc., etc.  tour operators use to provide tours and activities.

RESELLER
Someone who markets and resells tours and activities in exchange for commission fee, also know as agent.

RESOURCE DEPENDANT CALENDAR
An advanced feature of online bookings software specialised in tours and activities to help you manage your fleet of buses, boats, staff or other. When used smartly, it’s a powerfull way to increase revenues, reduce manual administration, and avoid overbookings. Read this case studies for more details.

 

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S

SEARCH ENGINE MARKETING
A marketing tactic which use paid services so that interested clients and customers can reach a business quicker and easier than ever before.

SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMIZATION
Search engine optimization, otherwise known as SEO, is a tactic which incorporates highly-targeted keywords into website content to make it more visible in search engine results.

SIGHTSEE
A place or monument that attract visitors and is generally a must-do in the area.

SOCIAL MEDIA
The term used to describe the vast amounts of social networking sites available today. Social media is one of the main ways that people communicate.

SOFTWARE AS A SERVICE
Sometimes referred to as “on-demand software”, a SaaS is a software delivery model in which software and associated data are centrally hosted on the cloud. SaaS is typically accessed by users using a thin client via a web browser.

SPECIALISED FRANCHISE
These are franchises specifically related to the tourism industry, that offer services and goods to travelers abroad.

SPECIALISED TRAVEL AGENT
This is a travel agent who is specialised in one particular travel destination or type of actitivty. For instance, some travel agents know Australia very well while others are more fluent in European travel. or SCUBA diving.

STRICT VEGETARIAN
Tours or Activities where consumption of meat is prohibited. Rezdy’s booking software allows you to add tour or activity specific information to your customer manifest.

SUBSCRIPTION
A flat monthly fee charged by software companies. The subscription model has the advantage to be predictable and doesn’t limit your profitability. At Rezdy, we are strong believers that you should not pay commission for software. With a subscription based pricing, the more bookings you get the cheaper it is per bookings, so you can grow your business faster.

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T

THINGS TO DO
Events, activities, and services provided in a particular tourist destination.

TOURISM ORGANISATION
An organisation which helps travelers plan trips while at the same time promoting businesses in a particular area.

TOUR OPERATOR
A person or company who operates a tour for travelers who are visiting. The operator often points out local points of interest as well as answers questions to their customers. The term is broadly use in the industry and can include dive centres, surf schools, bike rental and all sort of activitity providers.

TOUR WHOLESALER
Tour wholesalers never sell directly to consumers. Instead, they link individual tourism operators with retailers, supplying touring options that include travel, accommodation, and tours. They promote tour programs that they think will appeal to certain markets, targeting both consumers and retail travel agents in their advertising campaigns. Every wholesaler has a different price for tour operators to participate in their programs.

TRADE ASSOCIATION
An association which helps supports businesses within a particular trade. For example, a tourism trade association is designed to help all businesses in the tourism industry to improve, work together and make change for the better.

TRADE SHOW
A place where professionals from an industry meet to establish partnerships. Trade shows are slowly beeing replaced by more efficient and less expensive online specialised market place Rezdy community is an online marketplace for tours.

TRADITIONAL TRAVEL AGENT
A travel agent who works out of a brick-and-mortar location, available in-person to help out people who want to plan a vacation.

TRAVEL GUIDE
A guide that offers insight to the various things to do in a particular location. They often highlight tours, hotels, restaurants, activities and other local areas that should be visited.

TRAVEL PHOTOGRAPHS
High resolution images of a particular area that can be displayed on a person’s website to showcase their business.

TRAVELOGUE
Blogger specialised in the travel industry.

TRIP ADVISOR
One of the most popular review sites on the web. It allows users to review their experiences on vacation with specific tourism-related businesses.

TWITTER
A social media site that allows users to send instant updates that are 140 characters long.

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U

UNRESTRICTED FARE
A fee that an airline will charge for a flight without any discounts associated with it. This is considered the base price of the flight, and is used for comparison when discounts are applied to the final cost.


UNRESTRICTED RATE
This is the term that businesses in the tourism industry use to describe their base price. Essentially, the unrestricted rate is the fee for a service without any discounts associated with it. It is sometimes also referred to as the rack rate.

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V

VIDEO
A way to provide information to a customer via video technology. Videos can be embedded into a post or website to truly give an idea of what goes on at a particular event or location.

VISITORS INFORMATION CENTRE
A spot in most tourist destinations that provides information to visitors and answers their questions. You can typically find brochures as well as other service information here.

VOUCHER
A voucher is a bond of the redeemable transaction type which is of equivalent value of the  advertised tour price.

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W

WALKING TOUR
A specialised tour where a person walks along a street or path with a tour guide in order to get a feel for the area. The patron will not ride a bus or boat in order to enjoy their tour.

WEB AGENCY
A business specialised in designing and developing website.

WEB DEVELOPER
A person who creates software and website content for businesses.

WEBMASTER
A person whose profession is to design and develop websites.

WEBSITE
A location on the web where a business hosts its information. A website will display services provided, contact information and background information about the company as well as photos, videos and other multimedia elements.

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X

X-RAY
X-Ray technology is often used for security purposes when people travel abroad. Typically travelers have to walk through some type of X-Ray machine, and all baggage is scanned by X-Rays to ensure all travelers will safe, sound and comfortable while they are on the go.

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Y

YOUTUBE™
YouTube™ is the worldwide largest video portal on the Internet. Many TV sets with networking capabilities offer direct access to YouTube™.

YIELD MANAGEMENT
Yield management is a complex science used by accomodation and airlines for decades. In short, it ‘s increasing or decreasing the price based on demand. For exmaple travelling end of December is more expensive. Tour operators can use diferrent price for high or low season, or a higher price for Saturday and Sundays compared to less busy week days. Yield management is integrated in modern online reservation software and help increase revenues easily.

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Z

ZIP LINE
A popular travel activity that many tour activity operators offer in their particular destinations. The zip line typically goes over a natural area, such as a jungle, allowing people to experience the sight in a totally different way. Many people prefer to book their zip line excursions prior to arriving at their destination, so online booking software is helpful for businesses who offer this activity.

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