Tour operator

An online travel & tourism glossary for young tour operators/guides

Do you know what the first step to becoming an expert is? If not anything else, your grasp over the jargons commonly used will help you stand out from the mass.

But what exactly is jargon? And why is it so important?

A word, a phrase or an expression that people from a specific domain, business or academia normally use is called a jargon. Let me help with you an example, the word ‘grades’ are commonly used in schools or universities to bench-mark your performance. As a business- owner, words ‘gross sales’ will help you measure the performance of your enterprise.

As a student, when you ask you friend ‘what was your grade in class 10?’ your friend immediately responds because he/she knows exactly what you mean when you say the word ‘grades.’ now picture this, you want to go to goa in march because of “off-season rate” and your tour operator books your flight and hotel for the month of November.

Off-season rate – reduced room rate charged by resort hotels when demand is lowest
Instead of paying only Rs. 20,000 for the entire trip, you end up paying more than Rs. 50,000. Why did this happen? Because the tour operator or guide was not fully aware of the meaning of word “off-season rate” and instead reserved for the peak season, hence making your vacation a pricey affair.

This new article contains all the key-jargons that will turn you into a rockstar tour operator. Although, it is not an exclusive list, these jargons will help you smooth-sail into the business of tour operator/ tour guide.

Make sure you’ve a jargon or two up your sleeves in your life as a tour operator or a tour guide. From the list below, you’ll learn some of the most commonly used jargon in the tour operator business.

Also read: What Are Your Options after a Tourism Diploma?

A la carte – as per the menu, regardless of the price
A.m. report – morning status of unoccupied rooms.
Accommodation – bedrooms occupied by meeting attendees
Accommodations industry – the hotel and motel business, which is very closely related to the foodservice industry.
Accompanying person: any individual who accompanies a conference participant, not necessarily involved in scheduled activities.
Adjacent rooms: rooms side-by-side. (adjoining rooms)
Base fee: arrangement determined by gross operating revenue that assures management company profit.
Boarding pass: allows passenger entry to (usually) airplane.
Boarding point: where passenger gets on vehicle.
Boarding time: when passenger gets on vehicle.
Business-corporate traveler: people travelling on business who use tourism facilities such as hotels, restaurants, car rentals, souvenir stores, tours, etc.
Cancellation: guest’s request to hotel to void reservation previously made.
Cancellation clause: provision in contract detailing terms of cancellation, including penalties.
Carrier code: three letter designation for airport.
Check-in time: time at which guests check-in.
Check-out: all procedures involved in guest departure, including settlement of account.
Destination marketing – marketing a city, state, country, area or region to consumers and trade. Destination marketing organization – local tourism marketing organizations, such as convention and visitors bureaus or chambers of commerce.
Discounted fare- negotiated air fare for convention, trade show, meeting, group and corporate travel.
Feeder airport/city – an outlying city which feeds travelers to hubs or gateway cities.
Fulfillment – servicing consumers and trade who request information as a result of advertising or promotional programs
Group rate – negotiated hotel rate for convention, trade show, meeting, tour or incentive group.
GDS – Global distribution system that is a central interface between airlines, hotels, cars and travel agencies.
Hub – an airport or city which serves as a central connecting point for aircraft, trains or buses from outlying feeder airports or cities.
Inbound tour operator – An inbound tour operator is specialized in providing tours to overseas travelers visiting a destination, sometimes by operating the tour themselves, or through established partnerships with local suppliers.
IATA – International Air Transport Association formed by flagship carriers around the world to facilitate movement of tourists.
Leisure travel – travel for recreational, educational, sightseeing, relaxing and other experiential purposes.
Market share – the percentage of business within a market category.
Market volume – the total number of travelers within a market category.
Net rate – the rate provided to wholesalers and tour operators that can be marked up to sell to the customer.
No show – a customer with a reservation at a restaurant, hotel, etc. Who fails to show up and does not cancel.
Occupancies – a percentage indicating the number of bed nights sold (compared to number available) in a hotel, resort, motel or destination.
Package – a fixed price salable travel product that makes it easy for a traveler to buy and enjoy a destination or several destinations. Packages offer a mix of elements like transportation, accommodations, restaurants, entertainment, cultural activities, sightseeing and car rental.
Retail agent – a travel agent.
Room – double: no guarantee of two beds; double double: two double beds (or two queens or kings); twin: two twin beds (or two doubles or queens)
Supplier – those businesses that provide industry products like accommodations, transportation, car rentals, restaurants and attractions
Target audience/market – a specific demographic, sociographic target at which marketing communications are directed.
Travel seasons – travel industry business cycles including: peak: primary travel season off peak: period when business is slowest shoulder: period between peak and off peak periods when business is stronger, but has room for growth.
Unesco world’s heritage – A landmark or a site which is selected by United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organization as having cultural, historical, scientific or other form of significance and legally protected by international treaties.
Unique selling proposition – It is a marketing concept where campaigns are made with unique proposition to customer to switch brands.
Weekend rate – Discounted rate offered by hotels for the weekend that generates a major chunk of its revenue from corporate clients through the week.

In your entrepreneurial pursuit to becoming a popular tour operator/ tour guide, you must know these lingoes like the back of your hand. Travel purist and enthusiast will come flocking to your business like swarm of bees around a honey-comb.

Now that you’ve mastered the commonly used glossary, you will be better off than the 90% of your competitor. As you continue on your path to becoming a major player in tourism business, revert to this glossary to learn the tricks of the trade.

Read more: Why Choose Skylark Travel & Tourism Course?