The travel industry is replete with multiple acronyms where sometimes it becomes a bit difficult for a traveler to understand the meaning of that acronym. In this article, we have listed a glossary/dictionary for a few of the travel terms. I hope this article helps you out with the glossary terms you may be looking for.
A la carte
This usually refers to meals, an indication that each dish is priced separately; also that a choice of meals may be available, such as on a tour.
A directional term, used on ships and aircraft, which describes something off to the side of the vessel, such as the wings.
An option, usually at extra cost, added to travel arrangements.
Two hotel or accommodation rooms that have a door connecting them from the inside, allowing the guests to combine the two rooms into one larger room.
The total number of seats allowed to be sold at a particular rate.
Airport access fee
A fee paid to the airport authority by car rental companies for the use of shuttle vehicles. This often appears in customer’s car rental bills.
A person who has the power to act as the representative for another person. Most Frequently in travel, a specific kind of agent such as a travel agent.
Toward the rear of a ship.
A transport service to/from an airport to hotel, etc., normally prepaid as part of a package tour, but available separately as well.
Sold for one price that includes charges and fees that are often added separately.
A tour package in which most travel elements are purchased for set price. Also called an all-expense package.
A desirable or useful feature or facility of a building or place
Average room rate
The total guest room revenue for a given period divided by the number of rooms occupied for the same period.
The cost of an airfare prior to addition of fees, taxes or surcharges.
Specific dates in which special fares or promotions do not apply. Typically exist around holidays or special events.
A ticket issued at airport check-in that authorizes airplane boarding.
A reduced fare for purchases of a large number of tickets.
While amenities vary based on the airline, business class generally falls between first class and coach.
A relaxing and romantic vacation or getaway taken by parents-to-be before their baby is born.
The amount of baggage a passenger may transport without having to pay extra charges, determined by the carrier.
Bed and breakfast (B&B)
Overnight accommodations usually in a private home or boarding house, often with a full American-style or Continental breakfast included in one rate.
Usually refers to the bed in a ship’s cabin; also space at which a ship is docked.
A receipt with a seat number, now issued only at check-in at the airport. A ticket is not valid unless a boarding pass has been issued. A Boarding Pass is not a ticket but allows you to board a plane or ship or other modes of transportation.
The passenger area on an aircraft; the stateroom aboard a cruise ship.
The collective group of flight attendants and the purser as a whole. The cabin crew is responsible primarily for handling the duties within the cabin.
The monetary penalty due when travel plans are cancelled, usually after final payment has been made.
The captain is the pilot or commander of an aircraft or a ship
Generic term for any company that transports passengers and/or freight.
A travel agency that usually caters to medium-large sized businesses.
A gathering of professionals or others to discuss matters of common interest in a foreign land.
Currently, there are no uniformly enforced airline restrictions concerning carry-on luggage.
Certified Tour Professional (CTP)
A designation conferred upon tour professionals who have completed a prescribed course of academic study, professional service, tour employment, and evaluation requirements. The CTP program is administered by the National Tour Association (Lexington, KY) and is open to individuals employed in any segment of the tourism industry.
Certified Travel Associate – (CTA)
A travel professional certified by the Institute of Certified Travel Agents, who has passed a series of rigorous tests, assuring the traveling public of professional competence.
Any trip that involves more than a single destination, but which returns to the initial point of departure.
A tour guide who points out and comments on the highlights of a city, usually from a motor coach or van.
An oral or written statement by a travel supplier that they have received and will honor a reservation.
A flight that makes a stop at an intermediate point where the traveler must change planes in order to continue/connect to another flight to reach their destination.
Two rooms that are connected to each other by a door. These rooms can be sold as a connecting/adjoining room to the same party or separately to two different parties (in which case the doors are locked from both sides).
A computerized, organized collection of individual customer information.
The floor area of a ship. Some cruise liners have as many as 11 or more decks.
An advance payment required to obtain and confirm a reservation.
The geographic place to which a traveler is going.
A flight that goes from a traveler’s origin to their final destination with no intermediate stops.
An additional fare added to an international flight/fare.
the way in which almost all cruise fares and tour packages are quoted, that is, based on two people traveling together. Most hotel rooms are quoted based on two adults to a room.
To move to a lesser level of accommodations or a lower class of service.
Item amounts and categories specified by a government that are fee of tax or duty charges when brought into the country.
A perk that allows a guest to check in at an earlier time than the standard check-in time.
A paperless ticket that allows travelers to fly with only a photo ID. Commonly referred to as “E-ticket’s”
Basic meal of cereal, juice, eggs, meats, and other beverages. Common with most hotels in the UK.
Someone who leads or conducts a tour of a group
estimated time of arrival.
estimated time of departure.
Checked luggage that exceeds the weight limitation of the expressed baggage allowance policy by the specific airline. Excess baggage fees vary by carrier, but tend to be very expensive.
Discounted airfares offered by travel consolidators.
Familiarization Tour or Trip. FAMS are marketing initiatives, inviting either media or travel trade professionals to tour a region or destination to experience it firsthand.
A plan offered by most hotels that allows children to stay in the same room as their parents at no additional charge. Age requirements vary between hotels.
The code that determines the price of an airline ticket.
The class which offers the most premium service. Enhanced seating, meal selection, and drink offerings staples of this services.
One who flies frequently.
A hotel with all guest rooms occupied.
The kitchen/kitchenette area of a plane or train or ship.
The specific area in an airport where passengers board a plane for a flight
Global Distribution Systems
Greenwich Mean Time (GMT)
Solar based time in Greenwich, England
A travel package for an assembly of travelers that has a common itinerary, travel date, and transportation.
A person or company qualified to conduct tours of specific localities or attractions.
A printed version of a document
Honeymoon travel is a category of travel where a newly married couple travels while celebrating their marriage.
an inexpensive accommodation, usually dormitory style, popular with the student crowd
an airport or city in which an airline has a major presence and many flights to other destinations.
The International Air Transport Association supports aviation with global standards for airline safety, security, efficiency and sustainability.
Institute of Certified Travel Agents located in Wellesley, MA.
En route or in the process of traveling.
A tour for groups of travelers whose trip originates in another location and usually in another country.
The planned route for a trip. It is a pre-planned experience with where to go, when and what to expect when you get there.
An enclosed, movable connector which extends from a terminal gate to a plane, allowing passengers to board and disembark without having to go outside.
A temporary sleep problem that can affect anyone who quickly travels across multiple time zones.
A flight term referring to an auxiliary (extra) seat for persons who are not operating the aircraft, such as the cabin crew or perhaps a trainee.
A measure of distance using the metric system
A hotel room that has a king-sized bed.
All non-flying reservations upon arrival such as hotel, car rental, tour reservations, etc
A land destination or travel destination is a place to which one is journeying,
A rate that does NOT include air transportation and usually refers to most other land-based charges such as hotel accommodations, transfers, taxes and perhaps other optional items like theme park tickets, car rental, etc
Travel by train, bus, limo, taxi, uber to/from an accommodation, airplane or cruise ship.
Late Booking Fee
A fee due if travel arrangements are made at the last minute.
The period of time spent between connecting flights on the ground.
Usually signifies traveling for relaxation, vacation, or to visit friends/family.
Lowest available fare
The most inexpensive flight currently available.
The most expensive, high class accommodations or category of fare, like a suite or first class.
The longest period of time a traveler can stay at a particular destination and still qualify for the promotion or discounted fare.
A pre-purchased service for meeting and greeting clients upon arrival in a city, usually at the airport, pier, or rail station, and assisting clients with entrance formalities, collecting baggage, and obtaining transportation.
A tour designed around a specific meeting or conference for the participants.
Minimum connect time
Defined as the minimum time necessary between connecting flights – 30 minutes domestically, usually – ideally, at least an hour
A travel package of two or more days.
The price/fare of an airline ticket before it has any commission or tax added to it.
This refers to hotel room inventory that is sold via a third-party distributor at prices subject to commission
A traveler that does not appear or “show up” for their flight, hotel or car rental reservation, without officially canceling the reservation.
A ticket in which no money will be refunded to the customer if they cancel the reservation.
A ticket that can only be used by the person who was originally on the reservation.
A flight that travels directly to its destination without any stops, connections or layovers.
The percentage of all available hotel rooms at a given property that is either estimated/expected/projected or actual during any given day or period of time.
Any company that provides any transportation service
The departure leg or segment of a journey.
A tour that takes travelers out of the area, usually from a domestic city to another country.
Passenger Facility Charge (PFC)
An additional fee for use of the airport facility.
Passenger Name Record (PNR)
The official name of a customer’s reservation in a computer reservations system (CRS).
A service that will take your passport and hand carry, if necessary, to the appropriate embassy in order to expedite a visa.
Per Capita Costs
Costs per person.
Point to Point
Refers to the fare between two cities.
A fare immediately offered for purchase by the airline. This does not include heavily discounted flights usually offered to consolidaters.
A room that accommodates four persons.
The process of sorting and retrieving information
The price of a hotel prior to discount.
to double-check a reservation.
The number assigned to a reservation in the airlines number. This number is unique, as it will never be assigned again.
A flight in which the travel takes place between the hours of 9pm and 7am.
When a new ticket is issued as a result of a change of plans.
Two flights: the destination flight and its return trip.
A hotel term where a room has been booked or occupied
The world’s largest global distribution (reservation) system. Often referred to as a GDS
The journey that includes wild life viewing (and sometimes hunting).
Saturday Night Stay
Requires staying over a Saturday night to receive a special fare or discount.
A room that is only guaranteed to comfortably accommodate one guest
Refers to the sleeping compartment on board a train.
The spa offers health and beauty treatments like steam baths, massages, facials, manicures, pedicures, etc.
Any fare that deviates from normal pricing.
A premium hotel room that usually offers a living room and kitchenette in addition to the bedroom.
The period of time between busy and quiet seasons in which prices are typically at a midpoint.
A schedule of prices/fares.
A building where customers report for their trips via airplane, train, bus etc. Also called a depot or a station.
A prearranged, prepaid journey to one or more destinations that generally returns to the point of origin,
A person qualified and often certified to conduct tours of specific locations or attractions.
Local transportation and porterage from one carrier terminal to another, from terminal to a hotel or from a hotel to an attraction.
A passenger who remains on the plane at a connecting stop on the way to his/her final destination.
Blank airline tickets.
An individual or company that sell travel services on a commission basis.
Usually used in the travel industry to refer to an ARC-appointed storefront retailer.
A term used by car rental companies to denote that there are no mileage restrictions for the rental.
An airfare with no limitations or restrictions.
To move to a better accommodation or class of service.
The relationship between the benefits of a product or service, and the price.
A large and luxurious country residence that is often a fancy vacation home. The word literally means “country house for the elite”.
A document that grants permission/entry to a country for a specific purpose and for a finite period of time.
Documents that are exchanged for goods and services to substantiate payment that will be paid or has already been paid.
A list of customers/clients awaiting a confirmed reservation for any transport
A written acknowledgement that a passenger has declined something.
Calculating and analyzing the profits (or the yield) earned per customer.