Different Types of Tour Operators

Whether you are travelling alone, with your family or going out with friends, choosing the best tour company and knowing the kind of services that you need can be quite overwhelming. According to the UN World Trade Organization, there are 3 major types of tours namely inbound, domestic and outbound. Thankfully, many tour companies provide both outbound and domestic tour services. But what are they? Read through to learn more about them.

Domestic Tours

These kinds of tours involve the residents of a given country travelling within the country. The kind of services provided includes visiting the national parks, scenic features, train tours, and hospitality tours.  Since there are endless options, tourists can always choose the kind of services that they need. Domestic tour operations are therefore for those who combine tourist components into an inclusive package that they can sell to the tourist. Basically, they provide services within the boundary of the country.

Inbound tours

These kinds of tours involve non-residents touring another country. Companies that provide these services are known as inbound or receptive tour operators. They are especially useful in international tours where there is luggage to be handled. They make arrangements to hire local agents, for airport pick-up and delivery and to attend to all the details including handling any emergencies. If you are working for these companies, you are likely to be local. These tour operators, therefore, need to adopt new strategies and introduce special interest to cater to the special needs of foreign tourists.

Outbound tour operators

These refer to tour operators who promote tours to other countries. These may be leisure or business tours. They generally take residents from one country to another. They take travellers from around the world to the different countries that they want to go to. Some of the most popular places include the USA, Europe, China, Patagonia, the Middle East, and Antarctica. There are many companies that provide these kinds of services. If you love these tours, you can always contact them to get further information regarding the packages offered.

Ground operators or destination management companies

Commonly known as handling companies, these companies main work is to organize tour arrangements for any incoming tourists on behalf of other operators. When an operator promotes wildlife holidays, beach holidays, and cultural tours at different places some issues may come up. It’s, therefore, the ground operator who will ensure that the entire operation goes according to the package agreements and tours.

List of services provided by the tour companies


  • Accommodation- Most tour companies take pride in giving the customers the accommodation that they need. No matter where they are, these companies will ensure that they are comfortable.
  • Flight reservations- Depending on the flight that you need the companies will make prior arrangements and reserve the flight for you.
  • Delivery service-  Most agencies also delivers itinerary tour documents, airline tickets, and other travel documents free of charge to customers.
  • Car hire services- Should the tourist prefer a particular car hire services, the company will provide them with that. As long as you love these tours, they will make sure you are comfortable and safe.

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