The impact of COVID-19 on group tour operators and the implications for overtourism

Bolton, Karl (2022) The impact of COVID-19 on group tour operators and the implications for overtourism. In: Global Strategic Management in the Service Industry: A Perspective of the New Era. Emerald Publishing Limited, UK, pp. 139-152. ISBN 978-1-80117-082-6

[thumbnail of Book chapter]
PDF (Book chapter)
BK-EMP-GLOBAL_STRATEGIC-220109-Chp07.pdf - Accepted Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial.

Download (593kB) | Preview


This chapter sets out to analyze the impact of the Covid-19 virus on the holidays provided by UK group tour operators (GTOs) and the implications for overtourism. With tourism arrivals expected to fall by up to 30% in 2020 and a slow return to pre-Covid-19 levels for 2021 and beyond, the industry is possibly suffering the loss of up to 100 million travel-related jobs (World Travel and Tourism Council, 2020). GTOs will need to assess and possibly change the way they do business to initially survive and subsequently build up tourism numbers in the coming years.

This chapter identifies how GTOs could alter their holiday proposition to reassure travellers including the challenges of operating international tours when airlines have reduced capacity, the need to consider alternative age demographics who are more likely to travel and assessing existing itineraries to visit rural or small town locations rather than cities where numerous itineraries travel to now.

Finally, this chapter discusses and describes the significance of the findings with insights about possible opportunities based upon the approaches taken by various countries to target potential holidaymakers and the need to create a ‘crisis management plan’ for current and future countries. This may result in operational adjustments to meet these new requirements including the changing outlook of potential customers and the possibility of offering domestic tours to meet the current demand.

Item Type: Book Section
Identifier: 10.1108/978-1-80117-081-920221011
Additional Information: Citation Bolton, K. (2022), "The Impact of COVID-19 on Group Tour Operators and the Implications for Overtourism", Tabari, S. and Chen, W. (Ed.) Global Strategic Management in the Service Industry: A Perspective of the New Era, Emerald Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 139-152. This author accepted manuscript is deposited under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial 4.0 International (CC BY-NC) licence. This means that anyone may distribute, adapt, and build upon the work for non-commercial purposes, subject to full attribution. If you wish to use this manuscript for commercial purposes, please contact
Keywords: Overtourism, Covid-19, Group tour operators, Tours, Social distancing, Coach tours
Subjects: Hospitality and tourism > Tourism
Hospitality and tourism > Tourism > Tourism development
Hospitality and tourism > Tourism > Tourism management
Related URLs:
Depositing User: Karl Bolton
Date Deposited: 13 May 2022 09:28
Last Modified: 15 Nov 2022 15:17


Downloads per month over past year

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item