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Free Content Examining the market structure of the German and UK tour operating industries through an analysis of package holiday prices

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This paper offers new empirical evidence that can be used to analyse the structure of the market in which tour operators compete. The authors examine the prices of package holidays to the Balearic Islands, one of the Mediterranean's leading tourist destinations, offered by a sample of German and UK tour operators. The hedonic price method is used, expressing package holiday prices in terms of the characteristics of the packages. The model also incorporates information that facilitates assessment of certain aspects of the market: in particular, the market power of various tour operators and the influence of agreements with hotel chains. The paper concludes that tour operators' strategies and price structures are characteristic of an oligopolistic market.


Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: September 1, 2003

More about this publication?
  • Tourism Economics, published bimonthly, is a peer-reviewed journal devoted to the economics and finance of tourism worldwide. Articles address the components of the tourism product (accommodation; restaurants; merchandizing; attractions; transport; entertainment; tourist activities); and the economic organization of tourism at micro and macro levels (market structure; role of public/private sectors; community interests; strategic planning; marketing; finance; economic development).

    Fast Track. Tourism Economics Fast Track papers have been peer-reviewed, revised and fully accepted for publication. However, although these are the final versions from the authors, they are unedited manuscripts and will undergo a rigorous editing process before their appearance in an issue of the journal. This means that the Fast Track manuscripts may not conform to journal style in terms of presentation, spelling and other usages. They may also contain errors of typography, grammar, spelling, referencing, etc, all of which will be corrected in the processes of copy-editing and proofreading.
    Tourism Economics operates a Fast Track online publication system so that papers can be published and made available almost immediately on final acceptance by the journal. Each Fast Track article is given a DOI. When the paper is assigned to an issue, this DOI will automatically be transferred to the article in the journal issue.
    Fast Track articles may be cited using the DOI. Citations should include the author's or authors' name(s), the title of the article, the title of the journal followed by the words Fast Track, the year of Fast Track publication and the DOI. For example:

    Smith, J. (2013), Article title, Tourism Economics Fast Track, DOI xxxxxxxx.

    Once the paper has been published in an issue of the journal, the DOI will automatically resolve to that final version and the article can be cited in accordance with normal bibliographical conventions.

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