What is Travel Trade? It is the collective term for tour operators, travel agents, international inbound tour operator (receptive operators), and wholesalers. Businesses looking to expand their promotions can work with these professionals to expand their marketing reach to increase sales.
Tour Operator: Develops, markets, and operates group travel programs that provide a complete travel experience for one price and includes, transportation (airline, rail, and motorcoach), sightseeing, selected meals, and an escort. Some tour operators market directly to the consumer, while other tour operators work through travel agents to reach consumers.
Travel Agent: An individual who arranges travel for individuals or groups. Travel agents may be generalists or specialists (cruise, adventure travel, conventions, and meetings). The agents may receive a commission from the accommodations, transportation companies, and attractions for coordinating the booking of travel. They typically coordinate travel for their customers at the same or lower cost than if the customer booked the travel on his/her own.
International Inbound Operators (Receptive Operators): A receptive tour operator is an operator located domestically that specializes in tourism experiences and manages products and services for incoming visitors, most often booked through international tour operators. International inbound operators play an important role in the packaged travel industry.
Wholesaler: An individual or company that sells tour packages and tour product to travel agents. Tour wholesalers usually receive a discount from accommodations, transportation companies, and attractions and pass on a percentage of that discount to the retail agents.
What are the benefits of working with a Travel Trade Professional?
- Travel Trade Professional(s) will promote your product to targeted customers in markets you may not have the means to reach on your own.
- There is no cost involved in the added promotions; in return, the Travel Trade Professional(s) will ask for a discounted rate or commission if they sell your product.
- Prices can be adjusted by season and opportunities exist for blackout dates.
- Working with international Travel Trade Professional(s) acts as a hedge against the volatile domestic market.
- Once a solid relationship is built with a Travel Trade Professional, they could sell your product for years to come.
- Travel Trade Professional(s) take on all marketing costs for promoting your product, they cover the itinerary production for the clients, as well as answer any travel planning questions.
- Travel Trade Professional(s) will manage the currency exchange, language barriers, and time difference when working with international guests.
How is the Wyoming Office of Tourism working with the Travel Trade?
Throughout the year, the Global Sales & Services team works to build relationships with new Travel Trade Professional(s), as well as to grow relationships with the relationships that already exist. The relationship building primarily takes place through domestic and international sales missions, tradeshows, familiarization trips, phone calls, and email. The relationships are extremely important in maintaining and growing WY product offerings. Many of the Travel Trade Professional(s) that are selling WY products have not visited the state, therefore they rely on the Global Sales & Services team to give them accurate and credible information in order to ensure their clients will be satisfied while visiting.
One of the many ways that our office relays information on new or improved products in the state is through What’s New promotional sheets. It is important that we are made aware of changes and new products and properties, in order to be able to promote the destinations and attractions competently and accurately.