Do you remember how you used to book your holidays….? A reflection on changes in the travel industry

Do you remember choosing your holiday by spending hours trawling through Ceefax and Teletext? I’ve been reminiscing since I saw this picture.

I started in the travel industry nearly 30 years ago. In those days we had to learn how to read huge airline timetables and write out tickets
There was no internet, no Google, no Trip Advisor. Everything took longer than these days, we had to TELEX out to a hotel for a request and waited days for an answer!
We had ‘Truth Books’ sent to us twice a year which had travel agent reviews of hotels. Customers came into the store and asked to see our ‘secret book’.
Complaints are far less these days than they used to be, I guess it’s because tour operator websites are up to date and customers can see what they are getting before they travel?

We had proper tickets, luggage labels and travel wallets. There was something exciting about your tickets arriving in a wallet , having a ‘proper’ ticket with your own name on it, some operators even sent travel bags!. These days its normally just a sheet of paper (or an app on your phone)

I think some of the anticipation has been lost with the introduction of video tours, virtual reality and numerous websites/social media sites. You almost feel like you’ve been somewhere before you get there and you often know what your bathroom is going to look like! We relied on the likes of Judith Chalmers to show us around, and I used to like The Rough Guide as it was a bit more adventurous!

The internet has allowed us to travel further and more cheaply though. We travel to far flung destinations all over the world these days and Low Cost Airlines have helped reduce the cost of our holidays, allowing us to have several breaks a year.

I hope you’ve enjoyed my trip down memory lane. Let me know your thoughts, comment below.

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