Kozeta SEVRANI, Liljana ELMAZI


The travel and tourism sector has emerged as one of the most important sectors for developing as well as developed countries. Tourism incorporates many of the features of the information society such as globalization, mobility and information richness. People from all nations, social rank, and professions are potential tourists. Tourism links a worldwide supplier community with consumers, equally distributed worldwide. Its physical and virtual networks enable worldwide travelling, bringing together very distant cultures and habits. The industry is diverse; the size of tourism principals varies from micro to global enterprises. While some are fragmented, other parts, like the airlines, are concentrated into an oligopoly of global alliances. Information systems (IS) in tourism have been among the pioneers of leading edge technology applications: Computer Reservation Systems (CRS) or Global Distribution Systems (GDS) have been among the first international inter-organizational systems. Yield management systems are among the most advanced data mining applications. Tourism marketing systems typically represent the forefront of multimedia and virtual-reality applications. The World Wide Web is profoundly changing the production, distribution and consumption of touristic products. Information and communication technology (ICT) is probably the strongest driving force for changes within the tourism industry. Both industries are not only growing above average, they will also be among the most important industries in this century. Being closely interrelated and intertwined. The first part of the paper presents a structural view, identifying the different types of players, the nature of the tourism business and tourism product. The second part gives a general introduction to the relationship between ICT and tourism and provides some empirical evidence of importance of tourism in the e-commerce sector. Part three gives a detailed account of the current transformation in the travel and tourism market. We can conclude that future competition in the (electronic) tourism market place will be characterized by the efforts of the players to exploit technology in order to facilitate organizational responsiveness and learning as well as customer relationship management by:

 using the infrastructure for enforced marketing efforts, generating user interest by specific services;

 being able to move in the quickly changing industry network, finding the balance between cooperation and competition;

 developing a strategy for knowledge management and permanent learning;

 permanently adopting to and using technological developments;

 maintaining customer relationships, based on sophisticated user and interface tools and

 monitoring ongoing trends and relying on advanced AI tools for product development and innovation.


tourism; distribution systems; e-commerce


Dombey, O. (1997) “Electronic Commerce – Changing the Face of the Travel Industry”, The ATTT Tourism Education Handbook, The Tourism Society, 93–4

Hagel III, J. and Singer, M. (1999) Net Worth – Shaping Markets when Customers Make the Rules, Boston, MA: Harvard Business School Press

Kadison, H., Weismann, J.E., Modahl, M., Lieu, K.C. and Levin, K. (1998) On-line Retail Strategies, Forrester Report 1/1, http://www.forrester.com, April 1998

Schuster, A.G. (1998) “A Delphi Survey on Electronic Distribution Channels for Intermediaries in the Tourism Industry: The Situation in German Speaking Countries”, in Buhalis, D., Tjoa, A.M. and Jafari, J. (eds.), Information and Communication Technology in Tourism, Wien, New York: Springer, 224–34

Tenenbaum, J.M., Chowry, T.S. and Hughes, K. (1997) ‘EcoSystem: An Internet Commerce Architecture’, IEEE Computer 30(5), 48–55

Werthner, H. and Klein, S. (1999) Information Technology and Tourism – A Challenging Relationship, Wien, New York: Springer.

Williamson, O.E. (1995) The Economic Institutions of Capitalism, New York: Macmillan

WTTC (2004) Travel & Tourism – Creating Jobs, Brochure for the Summit of the Eight. London

Full Text: PDF

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.