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Inbound & Outbound tour operators

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Alex Antipenko

on 1 October 2015

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Transcript of Inbound & Outbound tour operators

When a company focuses primarily on serving travelers coming from other destinations, we refer to them as inbound operators. They generally offer services for clients coming from other countries or regions. Examples of these include Adria Tours and General Tourist.
When a company focuses on serving travelers in their domestic or regional market seeking
to travel to foreign destinations, we refer to them as outbound operators. Examples of these
would include the large number of agencies advertising package tours to other countries.
The inbound operator seeks to understand foreign markets and develop products and
services that will attract customers from overseas to their destination, and will focus on
researching the travel motivations and preferences of target markets outside their own
Some companies may serve a local market, and they can attract both domestic and international travelers. A good example of this would be a ski resort. These are generally referred to as local operators without any distinction being made as to inbound or outbound.
The structure of the travel trade is largely driven by how consumers travel and how they identify and select the travel services they purchase. That is why it is useful to keep in mind some common distinctions made when describing travel companies and their markets.
Inbound & Outbound tour operators
The outbound operator continually monitors demand for travel services within its
own market, and will focus on identifying travel opportunities and creating products and services for these travelers going to other countries.
Outbound tour operators create and market travel products to customers in their own
markets that are usually long haul travelers seeking a specific experience in a foreign
destination. They may design and operate their own trips, working with partners in the
destination, or they may choose trips already designed by inbound operators and simply
market these to their own clients.
Outbound operators generally have an in depth knowledge
of what their customers are looking for and what their travel requirements are, and are thus
able to design travel products that meet those needs. In the past, most outbound operators
focused on group travel arrangements, but increasingly they are offering package travel for
independent travelers. Outbound operators usually offer trips to a variety of destinations, and
many focus on a small number of specialty travel segments, leaving the mass market travel
arrangements to travel agencies.
Inbound tour operators create and market travel products and services to customers mainly in long haul markets. Customers in countries far away generally do not have in depth knowledge of a destination or the service providers in that destination, may not speak the language, and may not feel comfortable making their own arrangements. Inbound tour operators serve these customers by taking the guess work out of planning a holiday, and may offer experiences that would otherwise be inaccessible to independent travelers making their own arrangements.
Inbound operators usually specialize in package travel arrangements of both group and independent travelers as clients. Inbound operators operate their own tours, although the services of many local companies may be packaged and resold as part of this tour. Inbound operator usually specialize in one country or region. They may offer tours catering to a broad range of interests if they are located in a country that is not well known to travelers, but if they are in a well known destination where it is easy for independent travelers to make their own arrangements they usually focus on specialty travel.
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