Types Of Visa

The purpose of intended travel will determine the type of visa required. Countries issue different types of visas. Some of the common types of visas are as follows:

1. Airport Transit Visa
This type of visa is valid at the airport only. The holder of this visa is not allowed to leave the airport. Generally this type of visa is valid for less than 12 hours.

2. Transit Visa
Transit visa will allow the passenger to use the country for limited time. The passenger may clear the immigration, custom and visit the country for limited time. This visa is valid for mostly 24 hours.

3. Tourist Visa
Tourist visas are issued for tourist. Generally they are valid for less than 9 months. At the point of entry, visa is stamped for 3 months which can be extended up to 9 months. The tourist visas are issued for single entry, double entry, multiple entry, and re-entry.

4. Visitors Visa
Visitors visas are issued for the visitors to visit their relatives. This visa is issued on the basis of valid invitation. Visitor's visa is generally valid for one year. At the point of entry, visa is stamped for 6 months which can be extended to one year.

5. Business Visa
Business visa is issued to the businessmen who need to travel frequently. The visa is issued on the recommendation of chamber of commerce. The businessmen need to present a letter from the company sponsoring the visit and it should be supported by and evidence of financial standing.

6. Student Visa
Student visa is issued to the valid students on the recommendation of the institutions where they study.

7. Diplomatic Visa
Ministry of foreign affairs will issue diplomatic visa to the holders of Diplomatic passport and to their family.

8. Non-tourist Visa
On the recommendation of concerned government departments the Immigration Department will provide this type of visa. This type of visa is issued to the foreigners involved in official works, INGOs, special mission, local citizen holding foreign passport, foreigner married to local etc.

9. Residential Visa
Immigration Department on the recommendation of Home Ministry will provide this type of visa to the renowned personalities, foreigners involved in economic, social and cultural development of the country.

10.Official Visa
This type of visa is provided to the officials working in different government offices as a consultant, adviser. Immigration Department will provide visa on the recommendation of the concern government department.

11. Working Permit
It is issued to the workers. The visa is issued on the recommendation of valid employer and labor department of the concern government. The countries should have labor contracts.

Checking Of Visa

It is necessary to check the following points regarding visa very carefully:

1. Expiry date of visa: Check the duration and date of validity.

2. Validity of visa: Check the terms and conditions mentioned in passport. A visa issued for a single entry is not valid for second visit.

3. Check passport and other travel documents. The visa in an expired passport is invalid. Valid visa in an expired passport or invalid passport and not accepted travel documents are automatically invalid.

4. Check the visa of the destination, transit and country of departure if passenger is returning to the country of origin.

5. Passengers traveling in transit through a country must be able to prove that they will continue their journey within the prescribed period.The transit passenger must have a valid ticket for the remaining stretches of the journey. Check the visa rules of the transit stations.

Travel Documents Or Documents Required For International Travelers

 People travel for pleasure, leisure, relax. But every travel involves formalities and an international traveler needs to fulfill border formalities. International travel is more complex as every international travel involves more than two countries. When the travelers travel from one country to other they need to fulfill border formalities. Every passenger needs to follow rules and regulation to leave one country and to enter the other country. Every country country has border formalities and provides custom facilities. The rules and regulations and border formalities are changed, adjusted to match with national and international situations. So, it is not possible to memorize and up to date with all the current rules and regulations of more than 200 countries of this world.It is difficult for a traveler to know the current rules of every country they travel. To support the travelers and to the airlines staff, International Air Transport Association (IATA) publishes Travel Information Manual. Travelers and airlines staffs will go through the manual and know about the documents requirement for international travel. At the same time it supports airlines airport staffs to check necessary travel documents. Following are the main travel documents for international travelers.

1. Passport
Passport is an official document issued by a competent authority to its nationals or to alien residents. It is the most important identification document and travel permit for leaving one's country and entering foreign country. Every international passenger must be holding a valid passport for all the countries to or via which they travel.

2. Visa
Visa is an entry in a passport or other travel document made by an official of a government to indicate that the bearer has been given permission to enter or re-enter the country. It is denoted by stamps or sticker of the concern country. However, it does not guarantee admission to that country but only certifies that a passport is registered by the visa issuing authority.The final decision rests with the competent authorities at the port of entry.

3. Health
Every international traveler need to follow health rules and regulations. So, it is the responsibility of a airlines airport staff to check carefully the health regulations of the country of destination, country of departure and transit stations. A passenger need to fulfill the health formalities.

4. Airport Tax
Airport tax is paid at the time of departure. Every departing/embarking passenger must clear the airport tax. The tax may differ from airport to airport and from country to country.

5. Customs
Every international traveler is personally responsible to clear the custom formalities of the visiting country. The procedure for baggage clearance is not internationally standardized. Every country has their own rules and regulations.Custom authorities of each country follow their own rules and regulations.

6. Currency
A passenger is required to fulfill the currency formalities of the concern country. Some countries have currency regulation. Passenger are required to declare the import and they shall not export more than what they brought in.

Types Of Visitors And Understanding Their Profile

Tourism is service business and service is related to personal relation. Understanding of each other's  likes, dislikes, behavior is necessary to provide better service. For the identification of the visitors, the segmentation of the total market is of the greatest importance. Segmentation of the market is thus made to understand the character, interest, likes, dislikes of each individual group of visitors.Segmentation means the identification of total visitors. The behavior of each group is determined by their age, sex, nationality, religion, economy etc.

1. The holiday tourist
The holiday tourists are the most sensitive to the change of price, peace, climate, purchasing capacity, accessibility as their objective of travel is enjoyment. They are readily influenced by skilled marketing efforts.So, the holiday tourist market has been regarded as the most seasonal. These types of tourists are generated  from developed and luxurious society.

2. The business tourist
The business tourist's choice of destination is determine by the nature of their business. Demand of business tourism is relatively price-inelastic, tends not to be extremely seasonal, and tends to be big city oriented. Business visits are relatively frequent, but short stay. On the other hand, these kind of visitors are attracted by events, exhibitions, trade fairs and conferences.

3. Adventure tourist
Adventure tourists are less sensitive to peace, political stability, accessibility etc. as compared to holiday tourists. Their stay would be longer than the business tourists. They are mostly young people. So, they prefer budget and standard and not deluxe accommodation.

4. The common interest tourist
This segment comprises visits to friends and relatives and visitors for educational purpose for pilgrimages and the like. Demand for this kind of tourism is price-elastic, and also sensitive to the absolute level of price.

5.Age group
According to the age group of visitors, they are categorized as students, youth and adult. Their choice of interest and purchasing capacity are different. Students mostly go for educational tour with limited budget and for limited time. Young people mostly prefer adventure tours and are budget tourists. On the other hand, old people prefer luxurious tours and also go for cultural tours.

For marketing purpose, visitors mare divided into domestic and international. Their character, interest and purchasing capacities are different, so pricing policy also different. The international tourists are also further divided as per their nationality. Every nationality has their own culture, interest, likes, dislikes and purchasing capacity is also different. So for the marketing purpose, they must be differentiated.

Nature Of Selling In Tourism

Tourism is made of economic and non-economic, countable and uncountable, tangible and intangible,and which is managed by different organizations at different levels with different objectives. The term 'selling' need    to be understood specially for the purpose of  tourism. It is due to three basic nature of tourism. Due to 'service nature' it is intangible, where ownership does not changed, immovable and service is provided in duration. Due to 'here and there' nature of tourism,its point of sale and point of service delivery are located in different places. Its 'time gap and space gap'  has created a gap between selling and service delivery. Due to ' joint effort' nature of tourism one agency sales service of other agencies. For example, a travel agency sales hotel rooms,air tickets, and trekking, similarly an airlines sales hotel rooms.
Following points indicate the nature of selling in tourism

1. The definition of selling
It is different from the company to company, from agency to agency and organization. It differs as per objectives. It needs to be defined as per the product and service it offers. For example, tourism teacher delivers lecture, tourism company sales tours. A travel agency sells country and trekking company sells mountains.

2. Service nature
Selling in tourism does not mean change of ownership. It is not 'one time one action'. As service nature of tourism, sales is extended during the consumption also.Due to intangible nature, sales need proof and proof to utilize the service. Due to service nature, pre consumption and post consumption is not possible.

3. Here and there nature
Here and there nature of tourism creates time gap and space gap. 'Pay here get there' need to be solved by reservation system and by service voucher. Points of sale and service delivery centers are located at different locations so tourists need to be transferred to the point of service delivery.

4. Everyone sells
In tourism, selling activity is done by every one, every time, every day. A destination sells its authenticity, local people are selling their hospitality. An airport staff is providing services at airport but selling the country image at the same time.Everyone should support tourism sales. Business efficiency is to create money out of it. 

5. Tourism selling is professional occupation
To sell tourism needs formal education and training. It needs qualification, accepted code of ethics and some certification from government recognized institutions. At the same time it needs education so that one can sell travel experience with knowledge.

Concept And Details Of Hotel Reservation Request (Hotel RR)

Hotel Reservation Request (Hotel RR)
Hotel reservation request is a process of booking hotel services. A big and regular business travel agency may have developed printed reservation request (RR). If not one can write a letter to book and confirm hotel services. Either way a reservation request should include all the detail information as follows:

* Full name of client(s). 
If there are any child, mention their age. If it is a group booking, prepare naming list of the group.
* Required date
This is arrival and departure date. If guests are visiting second and third times mention the dates of second and third visits.
 * Required nights
* Required number of beds and types of beds such as Single, Double, Triple, Extra/Twin bed, Suites etc.
* Clearly indicate Hotel Plan : EP, BB, CP, MAP or AP.
* Full description of arrival and departure, how and from where guest is arriving to the hotel flight/road/trek/raft etc. and where gust departs.
* If the hotel has to arrange pick-up, mention: Pick-up point, time, airport/terminal, station, exact flight and flight number, train number and arrival time etc. in detail. In the same way if the hotel is to provide departure, mention all the related information.
* Name the agency with official signature with official seal and date of issue.
* If you do not have the rate agreement, request the same and get it confirmed on the voucher copies.
* If you want special services such as special welcome, garden facing rooms, mountain facing rooms etc mention clearly in your RR and confirm the same.

Many travel agencies use printed RR to book/confirm/cancel the hotel rooms. If printed RR is not in practice, the written letter must include all the related information as above.

Modes Of Reservation

Reservation request known as RR is the main communication channel between an agency and the service agency on behalf of customer. So, reservation should be able to communicate all the requirements, desire and wishes of the client. There are different modes of reservation as follows:

- Letters or print form
- Telex, fax, email
- Verbal, telephone, personal contact
- Computer reservation system

Commitment to provide service is expressed by accepting on the reservation request. It is advised to have written proof of every reservation process. Develop a system of official record keeping of confirmation from service agency.
In many travel agencies where they have big volume of business, they prepare printed reservation book and confirm the service. The printed firm contains space to fill the required information required to inform to the concerned agencies. If there is no printed RR a travel agent needs to write a letter. The letter or RR, should be countersigned by the service agency as an acceptance and returned to the travel agency for filing purpose.

Reservation Process

The reservation process involves different steps. The most important aspect of sales process is to have detail information about the service. The sales manager should be familiar about the service, supplier of the service, location, service quality, rules and regulations of the region, country, accessibility, availability of the service etc. The next important step is to have an agreement  with service agency or supplier of the tourism services. As a middleman travel agency need to do agreement with service agency. An agreement may include different terms and conditions such as validity, terms of payment, cancellation policy etc. The agreement is the authority to sale.
The second step of reservation is to have clients request for special service. They provide all the necessary information like type of service, required date etc. It is the client's demand of service. Simple reservation is not enough, it needs to be accepted and confirmed by the service provider. The request must be accepted by the service agency.
Next step is to collect payment from the customer and issue Service Order (Service Voucher). A copy of voucher is sent to service agency and original copy is sent along with customer to receive the booked service. Service Order solves the problem created by ' here and there' that is pay here get there, pay now get later. The process of reservation creates trust among the buyers and sellers. Reservation guarantees business to the agency. Guest gets confidence of quality of service as his money is deposited in the agency.

Reservation process includes following process:

- Identify the customer :- the budget, interest, choice, duration, date, quality etc.
- Detail information of product and service organization:- quality, capacity, location, rate, rules and regulations, accessibility, amenities and availability of service.
- Agreement of sale/reserve the service.
- Need customer agreement to book on their behalf.
- Maintain communication with customer and with service agency.

Meaning And Need Of Reservation

Meaning Of Reservation
Reservation is to book. It is a process of holding for future use. It is a technique of holding authority or right to use in future. Reservation shows a commitment or promise from the buyer to use in near future.

Need Of Reservation

* Due to the basic nature of tourism, its service is intangible, ownership does not change, so customer wants to have proof what he/she has bought and what seller has promised to provide. It serves as a right to use the service. By the help of reservation system, service agency solves the problem of non storable.' Here and there nature' of  tourism creates space gap and time gap. Reservation tries to solve the problem of pay here get there, pay now get later. It serves as a line of communication between point of sale (POS) and point of service delivery (POSD). Reservation does flow of information between two agencies. It is necessary for the service agency to solve problem of non storable.

* Due to the limited capacity of service agencies like hotels, airlines, trekking, rafting etc., travel agency must reserve the space.

* As a middleman a travel agency need authority to sale and reservation system is an authority to sale.

* Reservation serves as communication system between the customer and agencies and between the service agencies.

* Reservation is a proof of what agency has promised to deliver and what customer has paid for.

* Service is a process and measured in duration and reservation will help to quantify the service duration.

Tour Sales Process

Tourism being a service it is a process. So its selling is also a process. It is not 'give by one hand and receive by another hand'. Service is a process so it is a commitment made by seller to provide service. At the same time it is a commitment from the receiver to receive pre-agreed service.Selling service is an agreement between two parties. All these complications are due to the 'three basic nature of tourism. Due to the service nature, tourism is intangible, variability of quality, non-storable and service need to be provided in duration. Being intangible the transecting needs proof. Buyer wants to have 'right to use' mentioning the duration, date and type of service. Due to the nature of 'here and there' it creates time gap and space gap. The travel agency being a middleman it needs to reserve service from service agencies to guarantee that the guests will receive the service.

Tourism service being a process, sales is also a process. It is not one time one action. It is a continuous process. It involves different activities and different agencies. A salesman needs to continue his/her sales effort during the consumption also. A consumer must be satisfied from beginning to the end. A tourism sales involves the following process/.

- Collect information and inform the guest
- Collect tariff from different service agencies
- Do costing of itinerary
- Reserve the service of different agencies
- Manage travel documents and complete travel formalities
- Collect payment and issue Service Order/ Service Voucher
- Monitor and coordinate the service agencies. Keep in touch with customer and check their satisfaction.

Points To Be Considered While Preparing Itinerary

An itinerary is the main sales item of a travel agency. It is the sales product of an agency. An itinerary should be able to transform the intangible character of the tourism product into tangible item. So, one should be very sensitive while preparing itinerary because it reflects the image of an agency.
Following points should be considered while preparing an itinerary:

1. Duration of tour
While preparing itinerary one must consider the allocation of time and duration of the tour- how many days in one country and how many days or hours in one place of interest.

2. Interest
Itinerary should be based on interest of the tourist. It must be interesting and attractive. A ready-made itinerary must be capable of attracting maximum number of tourists and easily salable, and should be competitive. Every activity of an itinerary should be interesting and total tour should be interesting. Every market has special interests and itinerary should try to focus on them.

                     Also Read: Concept And Meaning Of Itinerary

3. Season
Certain places are more interesting in one season than another. Certain activities are possible only at a certain time of the year and more beautiful at a certain time of the day. Tourism is a seasonable business so one should consider the seasons when one destination activity is better than other.

4. Budget
Itinerary is based on the budget too. For example, accommodation in big cities could be in five star hotels. In the same way trekking in Himalayas region is more expensive than trekking is hills. The same trek can be organized as tea-house or fully organized trek. Budget varies with different activities involved in the itinerary. The prepared itinerary must be competitive in the market. It must justify the time value and dollar value of the tour.

                    Also Read: Significance Of Itinerary

5. Possible to express in monetary terms
Every itinerary must be possible to be expressed in terms of cost. Every item, element, activity mentioned in it should be possible to be evaluated in monetary terms. All service elements mentioned need to be expressed in cost.

6. Possible to fulfill
Preparing and itinerary is commitment or promise. So, mention only things which can be fulfilled. As an itinerary is legal document, it involves consumer's right. Every activity and total itinerary must be possible to fulfill.

Significance of Itinerary

An itinerary is very important due to the following points:

1. Compound Product

A tourism product is not made of a single element but it is a compound product. It is made of 4 As- Accessibility, Accommodation, Attraction and Amenities. Two or more than two tourism elements are joined together to form a tourism product. The joining of these elements is possible with the help of an itinerary. Only transport or hotel room or attraction is not tourism. The attraction was there since long time, transport was there, but there was no tourism because there was not any mix product. So, we can say that modern tourism is a result of itineraries. Without itineraries, there may be hotel, transport or attraction but no tourism.

                    Also Read: Types Of Itineraries

2. Tangible
The tourism product that we are selling is an intangible product. So, it cannot be seen or inspected by a customer prior to purchase or consumption. Those intangible products are converted into tangible, invisible to visible by the help of an itinerary as it contains all the information. Thus, tourism product produced by a travel agency is the itinerary.

3. Sales-kit
As tourism product is intangible, buying and selling of the tourism product is very difficult. In this situation an itinerary is of great help to the salesperson as it includes detailed information of the tour, timetable, special features and events. It has mentioned the place to visit, activities, place to stay etc. An itinerary is helpful to the salesperson for costing purpose. It solves the problem of sales because the product is intangible and immovable.

                   Also Read: Elements Of Itinerary

4. Flow Of Information
 Point of sale and point of service delivery are in different places. Itinerary helps as an flow of information between two points.

5. Legal Document
Itinerary is sold and bought as a product so it provides consumers right. An itinerary has to be developed as a legal document. It includes commitments and either party should fulfill them. As in tourism we are dealing with intangible items, ownership of which is non-transferable and where middlemen are involved, there is always a possibility of misunderstanding and misrepresentation. The itinerary is the agreed document between the buyer and seller. It is the proof of the document that one agrees to buy and other agrees to sell. It helps to settle the legal disputes.

                  Also Read: Points To Be Considered While Preparing Itinerary

6. Ready-made Package
In this modern age of tourism, it is always a big problem fir the buyers to select and decide the right product and right seller. The multiplicity of the manufacturers and multiplicity of the distribution channel create a big problem of make the right choice. An itinerary answers all questions and confusions regarding the tour package and makes a bundle of travel activities.