Small Fish Big Ocean

Helping specialist tour operators and activity providers with travel ecommerce

Greetings All. I have just found this forum and am so glad I did. I've been trying to find a mentor in this business but if anyone can help me with a few questions then I'd be really glad.

I've just opened my own tour operating business, we started off with listing on a website and would now like to start taking bookings and organizing special tours for our clients.

My questions are as follows:

1. First off, my previous employment used TourCMS as booking software but it is extremely expensive for us here in South Africa, any suggestions on software or a way to manage our reservation system?

2. How would we obtain corporate clients?

3. What is the best way to apply for STO rates?

4. How do we arrange special rates for flights/car hire etc...?

5. Any advise? Legal advise?

Thanking all of you in advance

Best regards

Tags: africa, operator, reservation, software, south, system, tour

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Hi Celeste

TourCMS starts at 13 GBP (or 150 Rand) per month. Not too expensive regardless of where you are. There are various discounts that can be applied too which brings down the price.

First bit of advice would be to read the PDF document with 55 tips in
http://www.tourcms.com/company/travel_ecommerce_tips.php

Then read this forum thread
http://www.smallfishbigocean.com/forum/topics/setting-up-a-new-travel

I think these forums are better at answering individual questions rather than them all together. When you get to something you don't understand, ask!

Thanks. Alex
Hi Celeste

Is your first question a serious one that TourCMS is extremely expensive? Have you asked Alex for a quote, or is that statement based on information from your previous employer?

Having worked in the travel trade for a number of years, it is one of the cheapest solutions that I know of! Anything cheaper would almost have to be free, and you won't get a good system if it's free. If you want to go down that route my only suggestion is that you could use a spreadsheet tool such as Excel, which you will get frustrated with pretty quickly!

BTW, I have no link with TourCMS at all. There are obviously other Tour management systems on the market that you can look at (and I know of some that charge 100,000 Euros a year which is why I'm astounded by what you've said about TourCMS)

Edd
Thanking you all for your honest responses, I am very interested in TourCMS.

For now, can you help me with legal advise. I have registered as a Close Corporation and VAT.
Are there any other legal rights I need in order to run a Tour Operator in South Africa?

Thanks
Celeste

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