Tour Operators, Travel Agencies and Online Distrubition Channels

Traditional travel agencies will continue to play an important role in travel distribution, despite the erosion of supplier commissions, the decline in travel agency locations, and the surge in online travel and direct bookings.

There are approximately 17 100 travel agency locations in the U.S. and a total travel agent population of 104 000.

According to PhoCusWright and EMarketer online travel bookings, which represent close to 40% of the total U.S. travel industry sales is projected to grow at more than triple the rate for the overall travel market, generating year-on-year growth between 7%-11.5% through 2012. and taking share from travel agents.

According to PhoCusWright, the typical leisure agency today is focusing on more complex travel, such as cruises, vacation packages and independent itineraries, where commissions are still relatively high and more experience and expertise is needed to facilitate the consumer’s purchasing decision. But it also says that changes in the travel market have created opportunities for new travel agency models, such as home-based agents, cruise-only agents and agents focused on adventure, family, or honeymoons and weddings.

Travel agencies are in general the primary booking source for long-haul travel and a significant product information and counseling source. However online flight bookings to Finland/Scandinavia have increased. Travel agents influence the choice of accommodation, transportation, tour operator product and activity packages. Tour Operator travel packages are almost solely distributed via travel agencies.

Most Important Ones for Finland

Tour Operators of high end: Abercrombie&Kent, InTrav, Tauck Tours, Travcoa

High volume: Globus, Trafalgar, Collette, General Tours, Continental Journeys, Borton Overseas, Insight Vacations, Jensen World Travel, Travel agencies for leisure and corporate/mice like Altour Marketing, ABC Tours

New Potential Tour Operators and Travel Agencies

Zoom Vacations, GoGo Worldwide, Ciclismo Classics, Exeter International


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