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Travel and Tourism Courses and Classes Overview

A number of universities, community colleges, and vocational schools feature degree programs specific to the growing field of travel and tourism. Degree programs in this field cover topics that include hotel management, hospitality services, and travel booking as well as business and finance concepts. Read on for coursework and class details.

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Essential Information

Degrees in travel and tourism management are available from the associate's to the master's level. Coursework in travel and tourism may also be taken as part of a bachelor's or master's degree program in business. Voluntary certification programs in this field are administered by industry organizations, such as The Travel Institute or the American Society of Travel Agents.

Common concepts taught in travel and tourism coursework are:

  • World geography
  • Communication and customer service skills
  • Sales skills
  • Organizational skills
  • Marketing strategies
  • Travel and transportation planning

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List of Courses

Principles of Travel and Tourism

This course gives students the basics in navigating the travel and tourism industry. Students in these classes learn about the issues related to business and resource management, tourism's effect on the world economy and the political impact of tourism. Some introductory travel and tourism classes detail the many positions available for travel and tourism students; these include hotel manager, airline manager, event planner, travel agent and others. This class is mandatory and is usually taken during freshman year.

Hospitality Management

This class provides students with a background in how to properly manage all aspects of travel, lodging, food services and event planning. Incorporating information technology into the hospitality industry is also discussed. This class also discusses the importance of leadership in the workplace and focuses on strategic decisions about business operations. This class is required and is taken during the freshman or sophomore year.

International Tourism

International tourism courses teach students about how global issues can impact the industry. Topics covered include politics, economics, sociology, environmental concerns and international tourism management. This class is usually required but can be taken anytime during a college career.

Financial Issues in Tourism

This course focuses on the business and financial decisions those employed in the tourism industry must make. Finance-related tourism courses are usually geared towards those interested in a career in tourism management and are similar to what one would see in a traditional business program. Topics of interest include business financing, construction, sales management and currency exchange. This class is usually required and taken in the junior or senior year.

Tourism Planning

Students in this class design travel and tourism plans for potential customers, developing their skills in geography, finance and marketing along the way. Sales techniques are also covered in this course. This class is usually offered for junior- and senior-year students.

Cruise Ship Industry

A handful of programs offer a class that focuses on the specifics of the cruise ship industry. Students learn to evaluate various cruise ships, plan cruise ship itineraries and discuss contemporary cruise ship issues. This class is offered as an elective and students who are interested in earning an official certificate from the Cruise Lines International Association can take it for credit.

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