Terrible Tourism: Pitfalls of the travel and tourism industryPosted: June 5, 2012
If you have ever been on holiday then you will have some experience of travel agents. On the whole they can be quite helpful and have even done some travelling themselves so they will know where best to visit.
But then there are also bad agents out there and if you have been unlucky enough to have spoken to one of these then your holiday may very have been ruined and you could have spent a lot of money on a holiday that wasn’t right for you. So, let’s assess some of the terrible issues within the tourist industry that you should be aware of:
Travel Agents work on commission: As you all know travel agents work on commission, so a lot of them don’t really care if you enjoy your holiday, all they care about is occupying rooms. This could mean that they push you to stay at a resort where they will make the most money, rather than promote a resort that has the best facilities. Jerry McGuire said “SHOW ME THE MONEY” and bad travel agents are saying the same thing too. As long as they are making money they don’t care whether you stay in a grotty shack in Armenia or a luxury spa in Spain. Travel Agents can promote poor destinations – this is something you should be aware of.
Travel Agents aren’t involved in the resort: Unfortunately a lot of the time travel agents cannot give resort owners feedback, instead they are just involved in promotion and marketing. This means that sometimes they are stuck between a rock and a hard place, in that they have to promote facilities that they know will not meet the standards of holiday makers. This is unfortunate but it is a common practice in the industry. It would be better if resort owners and travel agents worked closely together but this is not always possible and when it is the agents and owners may have very different ideas of how to make the resort a success.
Resort Owners don’t improve their facilities: Some resort owners don’t understand that success involves two things: 1) marketing, and 2) having the best resort. This means that resort owners expect travel agents to do all of the work. If they are not getting guests then they think it’s the travel agents fault. Although this could be true, unless the resort has the best facilities and the rooms are available at the best price then all the marketing in the world won’t do anything for their resort. The old adage goes “You can lead a horse to water but you can’t make it swim in the pool” and that’s just as true within the travel and tourism industry.
Resort Owners want business first and customer satisfaction second: Unless resort owners actually care about customer satisfaction they are never going to succeed. Their strategy cannot revolve around getting customers, as if it does then holiday makers will see straight through it. Instead a resort needs to provide the best facilities (discussed above), at the best price and have an authentic brand and identity that people can believe in.
Although there are probably dozens of other problem with the tourist industry (many of which may be industry technical), these four are ones that I have experienced time and time again. So if you are a travel agent or a resort owner then you really should try to avoid the pitfalls above. Alternatively if you are looking for a holiday this year then don’t take everything at face value, realise that just because a resort is well-marketed doesn’t necessarily mean that is is the best place to stay.