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Have you ever read a travel/tourism piece and wondered what certain words mean? Most times when travel deals are advertised, people comment with enquiries about the implication of certain words used like return airport transfers or complimentary service.

Below are 10 most frequently used words in the travel industry and their meanings:

1. Per Person Sharing

This refers to hotel accommodation where two people can share a room with separate beds. It is usually offered as an option for strangers, a group of friends or lone travellers using the same travel package to help reduce cost during the trip. 

2. Add-on

This is an additional or optional service that can be part of a vacation package when requested for. It usually attracts an extra charge.

3. Booking

This refers to a successful sale in the travel industry. People go ahead to book a package when they are attracted to it, referred to it by a friend or convinced by the sales pitch of it.

4. Cancellation Policy

This is a condition attached to bookings. It enables travellers to make commitments to certain offers and gives them the room to change their mind. E.g. you can book for a hotel accommodation online without payment and make use of their cancellation policy of 24 hours minimum prior notice to change your mind. If you violate the terms of cancellation policy, there are usually penalties which include a percentage deduction from your account (since you enter your card details to make bookings).

5. Guide

This is a professional that accompanies a tourist or tour group on a tour. They explain more about the tour, giving you history and depth beyond just admiring the location or artefacts.

6. Return Flight

This refers to a round-trip ticket.

7. Return Airport Transfer

This is a transportation arrangement from the airport to the hotel and vice versa. It is an important this service for when you go on a trip and exhaust your cash or have difficulty finding transportation back to the airport due to its distance. When you are in a place like Bauchi where the journey to the Airport, within the airport and the nearest town is exceedingly large, you will appreciate having the service of Return Airport Transfers.

8. Accommodation

This refers to a hotel, Airbnb, hostel or any place that provides room to travellers or out of towners for rent. The stars attached to accommodation refers to the standard of service you can expect to receive at that accommodation. The higher the stars, the more expensive the cost per night will be e.g. any accommodation with 5 stars is super expensive because the quality is top notch.

9. Nature cruise

This is a tourist activity that takes visitors by boat to view natural sights like waterfalls, lakes, sunsets, rivers, jungle areas, etc.

10. Travel Photographer

This is a photographer who takes high-resolution pictures of a particular tourist destination, tourists participating in tour activities or a journey to a tourist attraction. His/her works can be displayed on a person’s website to showcase their business. E.g. the pictures like Kajuru Castle, Inagbe resort, Naidrenalin adventures, among others are taken by travel photographers.

The list of travel terminologies is inexhaustible because new words are added to it regularly. What are the travel terms you’ve heard that you would like to know what they mean?

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This article was first published on 7th May 2019 and updated on December 16th, 2019 at 3:22 pm


Ann Esievoadje is a freelance writer who is passionate about encouraging a reading culture and personal development. She has authored two books, The Quilt (fiction) and Being Mummy and Me (non-fiction). She manages Pulchra Publishing which offers a content creation/editing, transcription, different forms of writing (including Ghostwriting) service and her blog, Life Love and Anything Goes at You can reach her at

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