Travel and Tourism
Humanities Course in Travel and Tourism Why ? A simple reason. “ People want to travel, they just want to travel.” We have lakhs of tourists who travel for many reasons. Some travel to fulfill their religious obligations( like Hajj, Umrah, etc.. ), many more travel to make a good holiday outing . The business community travels to improve its economy. A political party does a yatra (India shining or rath yatra … ) to garner support & gain votes. In general every person wants to travel and has a reason for it.
This has given employment to lakhs of people who manage various issues of these lakhs of tourists. Managing them, catering to their needs & demands and ultimately making their trip a memorable one is all that tourism & travel administration / management about. Today tourism has given unflinching support to Transport, Hotels, aviation, shipping & communication sectors. With massive plans taken up by the Government, there is great prospect for people who wish to plunge into the waters of tourism by taking up a professional course in Tourism & Travels.
Let’s now have a quick look about a career in Tourism & Travels.
Why take up a career in Tourism?
- Tourism offers direct employment to over 40 lakh people & support many more indirectly.
- There is huge requirement to maintain International standards and have professional personnel.
- Travel and Tourism Industry is the largest foreign exchange earner among all our industries.
- The growth of tourism in the past decade have made it the key economy factor for states like Kerala, Goa, Rajasthan, Uttarpradesh & of course to some extent even Jammu & Kashmir.
- India’s current share in World tourism is expected to increase 3 folds in the next 5 years.
The Government support.
- The Central & State Governments have various incentives & programs to encourage private operators.
- Indian Tourism Development Corporation ( ITDC ) and State Tourism Development Corporations play the key role in disseminating tourist information & handling tourist operations at National & state level.
- They publicize the sightseeing spots, provide detailed information regarding tourism in the country, arrange tours, provide accommodation, etc..
- Avoid exploitation of common man by having a check on the illegal operations of the private sector.
The role of Private Sector
Huge money !!. This remains their core objective. Increasing flow of tourists has giving them a cake walk in the business. The private agencies offer a variety of services starting from the planning of economically viable tours, coordination of transport facilities, reservations for accommodation and travel, sorting out exchange problems and in general, assisting tourists to have an eventful, enjoyable and comfortable stay. This makes people more comfortable with private agencies than the governmental services.
The areas of boom in Tourism !!!!
- Business tourism (Offshore assignments, trade fairs, conventions etc..).
- Pilgrimage tourism. (Hajj, Umrah, Yatras, etc…).
- Culture tourism. (State tours, heritage packages, etc…).
- Holiday tourism. (Holiday visits, Resorts, Hillstations, ..).
- Adventure tourism (Trekking and mountaineering, rock climbing, etc..).
- Wildlife tourism (visiting sanctuaries, zoo’s , National parks, jungles..).
- … and many more areas being explored every day.
Travel and Tourism Courses on offer
- Masters in Tourism Administration.
- Post Graduate Diploma in Tourism & Travel.
- Diploma in Tourism Management.
- Diploma in International Airlines & Travel Management (IATA).
- Basic course in Travel Management. (3 months / 6 months).
Travel and Tourism Eligibility :
Primary requirement : Fluency in English, at least on foreign language & also 2 or 3 regional languages.
At undergraduate level : 10+2.
At post graduate level : Graduation in any discipline.
The beginning of the Journey !!
- Entry into this industry is mainly through a travel agency or a tour operating company.
- A 3 or 4 month diploma ( after 10+2 ) is all that is required to jump into the waters of tourism.
- Initially one may start as a front office manager / tourist guide and gain entry in the industry.
- The growth on the ladder depends on the professional standards you reach.
- If one can pass the IATA examination, he/she is qualified to work in the tourism industry in any part of the world and has lucrative jobs ahead.
Nature of work
- Basic operations : Handling ticket counters, tourist queries, dealing with travel issues etc..
- Fact finding : Updating the information about the tourist locations & the current trends.
- Effective Management : Making arrangements for accommodation of tourists & handle travel papers.
- Handling clients : Foreigners who visit India & Indians who visit foreign.
- Risk tasks : Booking of flights, confirmation & issues of tickets. Handle with care. !!
- Marketing : Advertising and promoting agency services to potential tourist clients.
Personality requirements :
- Good Communication & interpersonal skills.
- A burning desire to learn various cultures and languages, which decides your ladder of success.
- A pleasing personality with good memory to remember names, places, events & dates.
- Ability organize small & big operations with smartness to handle people of various cultures.
- Hardwork !!!. It still pays. Long hours of work is something most essential
Travel and Tourism Job Prospects
Once completing a course in Travel & Tourism, one can find opportunities in:
- Governmental agencies like ITDC & several State Tourism departments.
- International & National Tour operations. ( Hajj, Holiday Tours, etc.. )
- Domestic & International – Airlines, Hotels, Transport & Cargo companies.
- Travel consultants – catering to bookings, reservations & arrangements for tourists.
- Private Enterprise – To set up one’s own Travel agency.
- Experienced personnel can always look for big positions abroad.
Key note : Most of the highly reputed travel agencies prefer trained personnel. So the salary & other incentives depend upon how well you are trained & your personnel ability to work to the demands.
Universities offering courses in Travel & Tourism
Master of Tourism Administration
- Bangalore University.
- Aligarh Muslim University.
- Kurukshetra University.
- Karnataka University.
- Marthwada University. Etc..
- Indian Institute of Travel & Tourism Management, New Delhi.
- Indian Institute of Tourism and Travel Management, Gwalior.
- Annamalai University, Chennai.
- Kota Open University, Rajasthan.
- University of Kerala, Trivandrum.
- Pondicherry University, Pondicherry., etc….
Other special courses
- Graduate Integrated course in Toursim, College of vocational studies, Delhi University, New Delhi.
- Basic Course in Travel Management, The Ministry of Tourism, New Delhi.
- Diploma in I.A.T.A , Trade wings, Mumbai & New Delhi.
Correspondence courses are also conducted by several universities.
Originally Written by Mr. Ameen-E-Mudassar for the Milli Gazette, Dated On 1 December 2004