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The meaning of travel business and support groups associated with travel business

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Meaning of travel business
A travel business can be a Sole Proprietorship or a limited liability company established with the primary aim of facilitating travelling for and related activities of individuals and or groups of individuals. It may include such other activities as visa acquisition, booking of flights, accommodation arrangement, foreign exchange procurement to mention but a few.

The travel business sector has contributed greatly to the global tourism industry. According to available data, business travel spending reached $1.3 trillion in 2016 and is estimated to hit $1.6 trillion by the year 2020.

Financial support services
One important support group to the travel business sector is that of finance. Tourism and its attendant structures such as hotels, restaurants, transportation, resorts etc. all require capital to put in place. The banking institutions that give out facilities to finance these projects have become essential stakeholders to entrepreneurs and other movers and shakers of the industry. 

Also important is insurance as a support service. The entrepreneurs, who need to secure their investments against things such as fire, burglary and other unforeseen occurrences, need insurance companies who are ready to recompense them when the worst happens to their business. 

Another financial service needed is the service of Forex Exchanges. Tourists need to change their hard currency into the local currency of their destination country before they enter town. The bureau de change offer them safer places to transact such businesses away from the prying eyes of local hoodlums.

Emotions, Travel, Holiday, Aircraft, SkyTransport facility services
The availability of transport facilities to tourists to move around their destination is also an important support service in the travel business. There are tourists who would like to move around in public transport and there are others who would like to rent cars and drive around on their own. Car hires services are therefore useful in this sense. Coupled with this is the existence of a very efficient road network to make movement less burdensome for tourists.

Souvenir shops
When tourists visit a destination, one of the things they like to do is purchase something they can take home as a souvenir. Some go for dresses made with local fabric, some go for sandals made with locally produced leather and yet others go for locally made crafts. Most of these are sold in souvenir shops dotted around the cities. The souvenir shops also therefore form an important support service group in travel business.

Accommodation services
Visiting tourists need to have a place to lay their head when the Sun goes down and everyone is gone to sleep. Even for those who like night life, they must retire to bed at some point. Accommodation is therefore needed. Such services are provided by hotels and other types lodging facility providers like “Bread & Breakfast”. The kind of lodging a tourist would require rests on factors such as money available and preference.

Cuisine, Food, Italian, Antipasti 
Catering services
A tourist may want to try the local dishes of his destination or look for places where he or she can find food he is used to eating at home. In all these, there are restaurants and other eatery where he or she can feel comfortable to eat. Services provided by caterers are important in the travel business and the support is very crucial to the development of the industry.

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Health services
Health is an essential element in the tourism industry. While nobody expects that a tourist or any player in the industry may fall sick or experience anything untoward, one cannot also avoid these unforeseen circumstances. The provision of health related services are therefore very crucial. This is why some tour package providers include health insurance in their package to take of the health issues if they do occur. A hotel with First Aid facility is an added advantage. Well-equipped hospitals and clinics play a major role in supporting the travel business.

Security services
In countries where terrorist activities are rampant or happen occasionally, the importance of the security support service cannot be over-emphasized. Even in countries where there is relative calm, security agencies still need to assure visitors that all is well. Nothing is so welcoming than a tourist recovering a lost item after it had been taken and the local police are able to apprehend the culprit and return the stolen item.

1. a. Explain the term travel business
     b. Highlight the importance of six support services to travel business

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