YOUR FIRST STEP TO A CAREER IN ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT INDUSTRIES TODAY!
The course is designed to develop your skills in Tourism Planning and Management.
The tourism industry encompasses the provision of all those services used by people when travelling away from home, including booking services, transport, accommodation, tourist retail outlets and attractions.
Worldwide millions of people are employed in the tourism industry – from coach drivers to travel agents to hotel concierges, as well as all the other hundreds of occupations that cater for tourists and travellers.
Tourists travel to almost every country in the globe, looking for adventure, recreation and entertainment. They seek both new and familiar experiences, both close to home and far abroad. Some travel independently, others in organised groups. Some look for security, others prefer their travel spiced with excitement and danger.
This course provides a foundation for further learning in any or all of these areas, whether on the job or through formal studies.
There are 10 lessons in this course:
Travel Industry Overview/Introduction
Holiday travel, Business travel, Resources, Components of travel (Accommodation, Transport, Food, Luggage/what to take, Health, Money, etc)
Local, State, Interstate, International; health before departure.
Money, Insurance & Legalities
Credit cards, traveller's cheques, exchange rates, International driving, quarantine laws, Islamic law, political concerns, tariffs, duty free, departure taxes etc.
Transport - Airline reservations
International Air Transport Assn, Aircraft types, Flight information, transfers, time zones, passports, visas, baggage, travelling with animals, making a reservation, etc.
Transport - Car Rental
Types of hire cars, reading manuals, different road rules, making reservations, cost structures, etc
Transport -Other, boat (ferries, cruising), bus, rail etc
Camping, Caravans, Tents, B & B's & Guesthouses, Hotels, Youth Hostels, Resorts, etc
Travel Agency Systems
Ethics, Tourist organisations, Client records and accounts procedures, etc.
Special Project -planning a trip
Each lesson culminates in an assignment which is submitted to the school, marked by the school's tutors and returned to you with any relevant suggestions, comments, and if necessary, extra reading.
Describe the nature and scope of the tourism industry.
Recommend tourism destinations relevant to client needs.
Advise a client on planning for unforeseen circumstances on a trip, such as financial, legal and insurance issues.
Explain the operation of airlines, including booking procedures.
Explain the operation of car rental services, including booking procedures.
Explain the operation of other transport services, including shipping, bus and rail.
Explain the operation of accommodation options to a client
Advise a client on package tour options, to satisfied their specified requirements.
Determine appropriate operational systems for management of a tourism service.
Consolidate available information and resources to plan a trip.
Working in Tourism
The tourism industry is large and significant across a large number of countries.
In some less developed countries, hospitality and tourism accounts for more than half of the economy; and this industry can also be amongst the largest of all industry sectors in many developed countries.
Tourism employs people in a range of situations, including:
- Tour Company Managers
- Booking Agents
- Tour Guides
- Tour Leaders
- Activities Officers
- Event Managers
- Drivers (bus, limo, etc), pilots (plane, helicopter), captains (cruise ship, sightseeing boat, dive boat, ferries, etc)
Many jobs in the tourism industry are casual and part time, with work opportunities becoming strong during the tourist season, and weak in low season.
Some people work full time in this industry, but many others do this work as a supplement to another regular job.
Remuneration for many of those who work in tourism may not be particularly high, but for owner operators of small businesses, or senior staff in larger tourism businesses, a lucrative professional salary may apply.
Risks and challenges
Tourism work can be competitive and poorly paid. This means that, whilst it may be fun and fulfilling for a period of time, to make a realistic career and living in it, you may need to be the owner of a tourism operation or move up to a more senior position.
Tourism work can be unstable, due to fluctuating demands. This can be stressful to not have a reliable income.
How to become a Tourism Worker
Because of the varied roles within tourism, your route to a job in tourism can be varied. Many people study tourism, often in combination with hospitality. Other people may study a more specialised area, such as environmental tourism, or adventure tourism. Or, people may come to tourism from a different discipline, such as management, or administration.
Like most jobs, having experience will help you to find work. You may like to try and get work experience for a company you are interested in, and this may develop into a paid position. For many seasonal tourism operations it is a matter of being in the right place at the right time. Many tourist operators will employ travelers who are in the area for the season who approach them looking for work. Other industries are more permanent and you may be able to find work year around.
CUSTOMER SERVICE AND SUPPORT
The key to a successful tourism business is customer service.
Generally, customers develop opinions, mostly on a sub-conscious level; on retail assistants, a store manager, wait staff or whoever they are in contact with within the first 30 seconds of contact with that person. As a travel agent, you must understand this and be aware of the fact that the impression you give the consumer within those first few seconds of interaction may determine the nature of the ensuing conversation and more importantly your ability to make a booking for your client.
To build and maintain an excellent customer relationship you should be open, honest, friendly, helpful, genuine and enthusiastic. This applies to telephone conversations too, not only face to face contact with your customer. More that 25% of an employee’s time is spent talking to a customer; therefore this is the front line of customer service contact.
The travel agency’s main job is to make sure that the process of organising a customer’s travel arrangements is smooth and trouble free. Without the appropriate treatment of a customer the business would not survive in this highly competitive environment. Relating to the customer and showing a genuine interest in and concern for their needs is one of the most important tasks for an employee of the tourism industry.
Common mistakes made by travel agents during an initial enquiry include:
Inadequate questioning and/or a poor questioning technique which results in failing to develop a clear picture of your client’s needs, and by asking closed questions information which is relevant may not be presented to the travel agent.
Failure to control the conversation can result in the client going off on a tangent and talking about something which is irrelevant – this ends up being a complete waste of time for all.
Prejudging is a widespread fault that many people do, most often subconsciously, when first meeting someone. As a professional person, you must avoid judging people based on their appearance or your own experiences of other people of a similar age, ethnic group etc. For example, someone who drops in wearing tattered, dirty clothing doesn’t necessarily depict someone who will have a small or tight budget – that person could be a dentist who has completed some gardening work and didn’t change his/her clothing before dropping in to make an enquiry. Or someone who is wearing a smart suit and tie could be a backpacker on a very limited budget, but had just attended a job interview.
Expression issues are the ways in which the travel agent punctuates the discussion with the use of “you know” or “um” too often. Using these phrases does not show confidence and is subconsciously asking the client to agree with what you are saying. If during a telephone call you are unsure of something, confidently ask the client to if they don’t mind holding on the line, that gives you a chance to come back self-assured about what you are saying. If the client is in the office and you become unsure of something they ask, let them know you aren’t sure (remember be honest!) and ask for help.
EXPLORE YOUR OPTIONS FURTHER
Take advantage of the free Counselling Service we offer.
Contact one of our academic staff.
Learn from our experience.
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