Self-service travel has become more popular as technology has been progressing rapidly in these several decades. Tourists can easily obtain information, book air tickets and reserve hotel through internet to set up their own travel plans. According to a research from Telegraph (2004) and a study published by a research firm Mintel (cited in Holiday letting, 2007), the number of independent travelers who travel to Spain is increased by 30% and the market of independent travel is predicted to increase 45% in respectively. As Vogel (2012) mentioned that even organized tours are trying to tailor the schedule for customers to create values. It proved that there is a potential growth of self-served traveling market. Self-service travel is a better option than using travel agents in four different aspects, which include minimizing cost, flexibility, experience and safety.
1. Minimize cost
Self-service travel helps tourists minimizing cost in both transportation and accommodation. For instance, the rail pass is the ticket which serves unlimited times of travel on certain types of rail system like Japan Rail Pass and Britain Rail pass. Usually, its price for tourist is cheaper than the price for local resident about 10%. Thus, tourist can have a well budget control over the itinerary. In accommodation, tourist can save by choosing in guesthouses, the youth hotel or capsule hotel instead of the formal hotels. For example, Korean guesthouse starts at US$19 (Guesthouse Korea, 2012).Apart from that, the capsule hotel is another option, the rate of capsule hotel in Japan start at approximately US$65 per night with public facilities (Borgobello, 2011). These budget lodging can help reducing the travel-related cost.
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Ip, R. (2013, October 27). The madness of the anti-Manila brigade. The South China Morning Post. Retrieved from http://www.scmp.com/comment/insight-opinion/article/1339718/madness-anti-manila-brigade
Jones, A. R. (2013). 9 Things Travel Agents Won’t Tell You. Retrieved on 29 November 2013 from http://www.womansday.com/life/travel-tips/should-i-use-a-travel-agent
Saha, A. (2011). Foreign Independent Traveler (FIT) – An increasing trend in India. Retrieved on 29 November 2013 from http://blog.theotherhome.com/foreign-independent-traveler/
Telegraph. (2004).Independent travel is way ahead for Spain. Retrieved on 29 November 2013 from http://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/729671/Independent-travel-is-way-ahead-for-Spain.html
Vogel, H. L. (2012). Travel Industry Economics: A Guide for Financial Analysis. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
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