Work in pairs. Name some Ukrainian travel agencies and tour operators. Give a short description of them.
The travel agencies and tour operators represent a very important part of the tourist industry.
Travel agencies are retail tourist companies which work directly with the public. They are often called shops where customers buy different tourist products. Travel agencies sell tour packages and individual tourist service Among tour packages are inclusive tours, charter inclusive tours, inclusive tours with an excursion, coaching tours and cruising tours.
Travel agencies form groups of tourists to take part in ready-made prepaid tours. They also make individual travel arrangements.
Among separate tourist services there are air tickets, train tickets, boat or ferry tickets, hotel rooms, car rentals, sightseeing tours services of a guide or a guide-interpreter. Travel agencies also offer travel insurances and theatre tickets to their customers.
A typical travel agency has colourful brochures that illustrate the delights offered by a wide variety of tours.
The large travel agencies are members of a chain.
There are travel agency outlets in hotels, airports, railway stations, big department stores, at large factories and plants, etc. There is usually just one travel clerk in an outlet. He does all the work. He answers phone calls, meets customers in person, works on the computer, does paperwork, etc. Of course he keeps in touch with the head office and knows all up-to-date information on tours and tickets. Offers and prices are the same in all outlets of the travel agency.
Tour operators make arrangements for hotel rooms, meals, transportation and other services for tourists. They buy products and services from their providers in bulk at much lower prices. Tour operators try to get convenient room allocations in hotels, charter aircrafts or coaches, recruit staff such as tour leaders, guides, or resort representatives, plan advertising campaigns and prepare brochures, prepare a holiday package.
The job of tour operator can sometimes overlap with the job of a travel agent. They can be both wholesalers and retailers. They can either sell their products, holiday packages, through travel agent or directly to the public.
The travel agent is in direct contact with the client, advising on resorts, carriers, insurance and travel facilities in general, helping to plan itineraries for customers, etc.
The travel agent must know the product well and be able to sell it. Sometimes travel agents are invited to familiarization trips to become familiar with the destination they are selling. A travel agent should be a skilled psychologist as he should be able to discover what a client is looking for. Itís a task of a travel agent to recommend a client the right product at the right price.
Vocabulary of the text
Exercise 1. Give the Ukrainian equivalents to the following words and word-combinations:
travel agencies; tour operators; retail tourist companies; tour packages; charter inclusive tours; coaching tours and cruising tours; ready-made prepaid tours; boat or ferry tickets; car rentals; sightseeing tours; guide-interpreter; offer travel insurances; big department stores; outlet; up-to-date information; in bulk; charter aircrafts or coaches;overlap; carriers; to plan itineraries; a skilled psychologist.
Exercise 2. Match the terms with their definitions:
people who package or put together tours
people selling all kinds of tourist products to the general public
the period of heavy travel and higher fares
retail travel agents
a percentage of the price of a sale that is paid to the seller
transportation to and from airports, a regular feature of packaged tour
a special kind of insured check issued by companies or banks
a tour, often for sightseeing purposes, that is accompanied by a guide
a travel document that gives permission for a foreigner to enter another country
a place or area to which people travel
anything that can cause a tourist to visit an area
a pamphlet usually put out for promotional purposes
free trips to tourist destinations provided for travel agents so that they can push those areas
Exercise 3. Answer the following questions:
1. What kind of companies are travel agencies?
2. What tours do they sell?
3. What separate tourist services do they offer?
4. How does a typical travel agency look like?
5. Where are travel agency outlets situated?
6. What work is a travel clerk in an outlet engaged in?
7. What is the purpose of a familiarization trip?
8. Do you agree that a travel agent should be a skilled psychologist?