Tourism Industry Is A Service Industry Essay Example
Tourism Industry Is A Service Industry Essay Example

Tourism Industry Is A Service Industry Essay Example

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  • Pages: 5 (1187 words)
  • Published: April 17, 2017
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Discuss why it is important for the tourism industry to distinguish between different types of tourists

The Oxford dictionary defines the word ‘tourism’ as “the commercial organization and operation of holidays and visits to places of interest”. The tourism industry comprises of various sectors such as – lodging, food and beverage services, transportation, entertainment and activites.

Whereas “a ‘tourist’ (visitor/traveler) is a term used to describe “a person travelling to and staying in a place away from their usual environment for more than a night but less than a year, for leisure, business and other purposes”. So why is it important for the tourism industry to distinguish between different types of tourists?

  • http://www.oxforddictionaries. com/definition/tourism? view=uk.
  • http://www. go2hr. ca/BCsTourismbrIndustry/WhatisTourism/tabid/71/Default.

In the tourism industry the consumer is the most important element and is the reason why tourism products and ser


vices exist. Everyone working in the industry must understand that the consumer must be taken into consideration when planning.

What motivates an individual to travel? The ‘push’ and ‘pull’ factors of a destination stimulate a person to travel. A ‘push’ factor is an issue that drives someone out of their home setting to a place that attracts them also known as the ‘pull’ factor.

Example: unfavourable type of weather is a push factor, a better climate and an attraction like a world wonder might be a pull factor for a different destination.

There are different types of tourist topology such as 

  1. The allocentric tourist,
  2. The psychocentric tourist or
  3. Mid-centric tourist.

An allocentric tourist usually seeks adventure, is curious, gains delight in trying out new experiences and is confident and out-going while psychocentric tourists are quite the opposite of allocentric tourists. They prefer to plan thing

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out in advance and are afraid to take any risk.

They usually tend to visit places that they are familiar with.

Mid-centrics are between the allocentric type and phychocentric type. The reason for people to get induced to travel and go on a particular type of holiday depend on a mixture of other factors too, such as their personalities, age, social class and income habits, interests, disability, desires, and previous experiences. All these various factors contribute to the purpose and type of holiday the tourist chooses. Tourist types vary from people who travel for VFR (visiting friends and relatives), business trips, pilgrimage, education or simply backpacking and camping.

Niche tourism is a specialized sector of tourism which appeals to a detailed market type, such as: Music and Dance tourism, Ancestry tourism, Dark tourism and Sacred travel. Different segments of tourism attract different types of travelers. Leonard J. Lickorish Carson L. Jenkins (1997) ‘travel motivations’ in An Introduction Tourism.


Tourist types should be distinguished to provide customer satisfying services-The tourism product is intangible , perishable , inseparable and variable. Intangible meaning, unlike physical products it cannot be seen, smelt, tasted, felt or heard before they are consumed, it is simply an experience.

Example: A visit to a museum can only be recalled through pictures and thoughts (intangibility) the customer desires an intangible experience like excitement, pleasure and relaxation. Perishability means that the product cannot be stored for later use. It is consumed as it is being produced.

An example for perishability would be the seats of an airline or rooms in a hotel. Airlines sell seats per flight and hotels sell rooms at the rate of a night, if the airline or

hotel is unable to sell its rooms for the flight/night then the opportunity to sell the product has been lost forever.

Inseparability is when the product cannot be separated from the service provider. Physical goods are manufactured into products, then distributed through retailers, and consumed later onwards.

Example: a taxi driver who works on a hire is essential to provide the service. He cannot be separated from his product. The product is also variable because the service cannot be standardized not all firms put in the same effort when delivering their service. These characteristics show us that it is the duty of the tourism industry to recognize the different types of tourists and their wants to provide their deserved service.

Tourists types should be distinguished for marketing purposes- The inability to differentiate between different groups of tourists can lead to misleading and ambiguous attraction of tourists to an area.

Example: false advertising and wrong information about a destination. Above all tour operators need to be careful in what they advertise as what they say and show might give tourists different impressions according to their perceptions. Advertisements causing misinterpretations or wrong impressions might be put out on the media intentionally or unintentionally.Operators falsely advertise deliberately to attract a wider range of audience and promote their product.

Failure to mention important information might also mislead people. Since the tourism product is intangible the standard of the products, its quality and value are represented by the advertisement. When people travel they have certain expectations of the experience they will have. Unfortunately those who get tricked by false advertising end up with an unsatisfied touristic experience because it was not what they had expected

from the information given on the advertisements.

For these reasons operators should have a clear target market which gives a clear impression about the market and present reasonable statements. By being able to distinguish between different types of tourists the industry will come to know what type of an experience the tourist wishes for.

Example: cultural tourists prefer visiting places to know about their culture and heritage therefore their package will consist of sites with a cultural value. With a clear target and knowledge about the tourist types and their interests the industry can serve them to their best by giving them a true and original authentic experience.

Therefore it is generally important to classify similar ‘behavior’ groups to indicate main interests and specify likely product demands.

Tourist types should be distinguished to prepare and develop the tourism industry for the future

By knowing and distinguishing the range of types of tourist that exist and the varying types of travel experience they desire and take pleasure in, it enables companies of the tourism industry to provide correct advice, information and services. Recognizing the needs of tourists helps the industry to recognize areas in which it has to grow.

Example: Planning out the mode of transport or type of accommodation a tourist would prefer like eco-tourists prefer vehicles that do not harm the environment ,by being aware of eco-tourists preferences the industry could provide necessary infrastructure.

Also by knowing tourist types it is easier to know what people seek for and how much they are willing to pay. Hence it is important to distinguish between different types of tourist to satisfy and promote the industry.


  1. Leonard J. Lickorish Carson L. Jenkins. (1997). ‘Travel

motivations’ in An Introduction Tourism.

  • Burlington: Elsevier. http://www. accreditnt. Advertising. pdf (accessed on 7th march 2011)
  • What is tourism. Available from : http://www.go2hr. ca/BCsTourismbrIndustry/WhatisTourism/tabid/71/Default. aspx (no date). Tourism.
  • Available from : http://www. view=uk
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