Theory Of Tourism (2004, 2008)


The present book is destined for a reader, who is oriented on the professional study of tourism, as that of a business activity and subject of study. A detailed explanation of tourist terms and basic concepts (definitions) is extremely important to perceive the complex processes in fact covering almost every aspect of a human life linked with the process of tourism and questions of formation of the principles of their regulation and realization.

Humankind is engaged in several types of activity, whose origination and life cycle are lost in the eternity, on both sides of time. A man’s nature is structured in the manner that he always tries to make a creature similar to him; a man has a long or short lifespan and a moment of death, but sometimes, a man has a permanent demand to take a rest what he meets with pleasure, and no living organisms can survive without a rest.

This simple, but profound thesis allows defining the ‘rest’, as any human’s life demand and defining the ‘tourism’ as the means of its organization – permanent category of activity.

The residents of our Planet, notwithstanding their residential area, nationality and social status, since the age of pharaohs to present, have always had and will have a rest. Every epoch in the mankind history contains the elements more or less linked to tourism. The people employed in tourism and travel organization always have the employment opportunities in any social formation, and in case of favorable conditions, they are adequately paid and respected.

The modern times are not an exception, either. Just on the contrary, more and more people get interested in tourism and create new opportunities for taking pleasure and entertaining.

Therefore, the people, who have linked their activities to tourism or travel organization, have made a wise choice. As for those, not having made such a decision yet, they will surely join the people mentioned above after reading this book.

The definitions of the terms given in the present book are based on recommendations of the World Tourism Organization (WTO), but consider the national practice and traditions, as well.

In any activity, particularly in those associated with the international deals, the question of definition is particularly urgent. The definition allows the parties to perceive the essence of a proposal, adequately assess the terms of a deal, principles of the normative acts and state of affairs. Any collision in using the terms may yield undesirable results causing further inadequate actions of the parties.

The roots of tourism, as those of a term, should be searched for in French. The question of defining the tourist terms has always been the subject of a severe argument among the apologists of the tourism theory. This is the economics and politics at the same time. In addition, the latter has quite a significant influence on determining the events. In line with the swift developmental rates and formation of the social relations, tourism and its branches, the tourism terms also change. The use of voluntary definitions and corrupted terms in the departmental normative acts leads to the complications of the tourism formalities.

Incorrect definitions and their use without considering their economic or political essence cause significant complications, which occur in evaluating and analyzing the statistical indicators of tourism. More difficult it is to ensure the compliance when the appellations of the documents with the status of strict accountability are confused in one normative act or state standard.

In a number of countries, concluding agreements about using and defining the tourist terms falls within the competence of the national associations and tourist unions. For instance, in Great Britain, the principal data recommended to use with the clients during the contract activities and during the deals with the tourist organizations can be found in one book ‘Tour operator’s Code of Conduct’ (Association of British Travel Agents (ABTA)). Therefore, the problem of terms is solved quite simply. Within the tourism field of Britain, you can never work as a tour operator or tour agent, unless you are a member of ABTA. On the other hand, a member of the Association is obliged to observe the normative acts and guidance of the Association.

The international organizations, primarily aiming at agreeing about the principles of the international statistics, regularly come back to the problem of the definition of the tourist terms. In 1937, the definition of an ‘International Tourist’ was suggested at the National League Conference of Experts’ in Statistics. In 1975, there was established a tourist organization, which made corrections to the definition of the term ‘tourist’ by introducing new concepts of an ‘excursionist’ and ‘transit traveller’ and clearly distinguished these categories of a traveler from that of a tourist. The certain team and economic interests of the countries have an essential influence on the definition of the major terms, which are accepted as the basis of the national normative acts regulating certain relations in the field of tourism.

The present publication misses a chapter ‘System of tourist education’, which, at a reader’s request, is replaced by the chapter ‘Theory of tourist product’ of the particular methodic significance and benefit.

The book was translated, made available to the Georgian readers and published by: Prof. Marina Metreveli, Doctor of Economics

Proofreading by: Prof. Tamar Bukia, Doctor of Technical Sciences

To a Georgian reader

Mikheil Birjakov

This is the book about tourism. It is destined for different kinds of readers. Even the complex theoretical chapters of the book describe the material in a plain and easily understandable language, which can be read and understood by high school students and potential tourists planning to spend a nice holiday. The book gives many useful pieces of advice to the employees of tourist agencies and tourist industries and social administration. Surely, the book ‘Theory of tourism’ will become a reference book for them. Of course, the chapters about the social issues contain the necessary information for tourism students and teachers.

The book ‘Theory of tourism’ is a high-professional and approved book, which has been published many a times and is used by the tourism students of Russia and CIS countries to master the general foundations of different tourist disciplines by detailed learning of the theoretical chapters of the book for more than 10 years.

It should be noted that at one sight, tourism is simple, but in fact, it is a diversified and complex process with its technology developed by the apologists of tourism trends for more that 150 years. In reality, tourism is a rule to lead a diverse life, rest and restore one’s physical and moral forces. Tourism is needed by the people, notwithstanding their age, sex, nationality, race, religion and political creed.

The tourist business is advantageous and profitable, but not every person having decided to be engaged in tourism is successful. Even minor disturbance of the basic principles of tourism may lead to the failure. On the other hand, successful and proficient businessmen, using the basic dogmata in a rational way are always successful.

The book has been translated into the Georgian language for the first time and is made available to the Georgian readers, particularly to the students of the secondary and high schools of tourism of Georgia.

I would like to express my gratitude to Mrs. Marina Metreveli, a Real Member of the International Tourism Academy, who has made special efforts to translate, adapt and publish the present book for a Georgian reader.

As for the readers, I would like to wish them to gain the most beneficial knowledge from the book, which will help them achieve the set aims.

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