What Does that Mean? – Industry Terms Can Be Confusing

Recently I decided to purchase my first house. Having worked in the Travel Industry for nearly 10 years, I don’t know very much about real estate. I discovered very quickly that there is some very specific terminology used in the real estate industry which can be very confusing when you don’t know what the terms mean.

For example: Cozy Cottage can be translated into “A very small house” and a Light Fixer means “You will be working on this house night and day for months”. Once I learned what the various terms meant, it was much easier for me to compare different houses, as well as to decide which ones to not even bother looking at due to the amount of work needed to make them livable.

As I learned all of this I thought that we in the travel industry make a lot of assumptions about what clients do or do not know regarding terminology and that is probably a bad thing. It would be great for agency’s to provide a page describing what various industry terms relating to meal plans as well as star ratings and hotel classifications mean. This would allow clients to easily compare two different vacation options to determine which is appropriate for them, without having to leave your website.

I would envision seeing something like the following on a site:

Meal Plan options:

A la carte: Does not include any meals.

All-Inclusive (or AI): Includes all meals, drinks  and sometimes non-motorized water sports.

American Plan (or AP): Includes three meals per day at the hotel. Breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Continental Plan (or CP): Includes a continental breakfast (coffee or tea, juice and bread).

European Plan (or EP): Does not include any meals.

Half Board (or Half Pension): Includes two meals per day at the hotel. Breakfast and either lunch or dinner.  Typically used in European countries.

Modified American Plan (or MAP): Includes two meals per day at the hotel. Breakfast and either lunch or dinner.

Hotel Ratings:

1 Star: Basic budget accommodations.
Examples of chains in this rating: Typically small independently owned hotels.

2 Star: Value priced accommodations.
Examples of chains in this rating: Best Western, Comfort Inn.

3 Star: Comfortable, mid-priced accommodations with some amenities.
Examples of chains in this rating: Residence Inn, Sheraton.

4 Star: Upscale, high quality accommodations with a variety of amenities.
Examples of chains in this rating: Hilton Hotels, Hyatt Regency, Wyndham.

5 Star: Luxurious accommodations with a high quality of service and exceptional amenities.
Examples of chains in this rating: Four Seasons, Fairmont, Westin, W, Ritz Carlton

6 Star: Exceptional service and privacy, amazing unique architecture and extensive amenities.
Examples of chains in this rating: Burj Al Arab, Park Hyatt Seoul.

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One response to “What Does that Mean? – Industry Terms Can Be Confusing”

  1. […] Provide a FAQ page – most visitors will probably have the same set of very similar questions (what are typical fuel surcharge costs, how much liquid can I take on an airplane, where do I apply for a passport, what do hotel star ratings mean? […]

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