Impact of the internet on tourism : e-tourism
Nowadays, the Internet is a very important engine for Global Economy. In 2007 the number of Internet users attempted more than 1.250 billion (La Documentation Française 2007). And nowadays the Internet not only allowed to communicate, it also allowed to advertized a product, to market this product and ultimately to sell it/buy it. So the Internet become a new market and creates a new way to consume: the “Electronic commerce, commonly known as e-commerce consists of the buying and selling of products or services over electronic systems such as the Internet and other computer networks” (Webster’s online Dictionary 2010). Actually, 40% of web users are also online buyers and this market was estimated in 2001 at more than 1 trillion dollars (Z. Zhou 2004 p56). So the Internet is a big economic sector but it is also playing a big role on the development of other economic sectors in Global Economy. Another sector had strangely grown up in parallel of the Internet development and become one of the current main economic sectors in the world: the tourism. Indeed “Travel and tourism represent approximately 11% of the worldwide GDP (Werthner & Ricci 2004 p 102). The World tourism represented in 2009 880.5 million of arrivals and a recipe of $852.2 billion (Ministère de l’économie, des finances et de l’industrie 2010). So the tourism and hospitality market are very popular but their development is maybe not only due to the rising standard of living and to the increased leisure time. Indeed there is maybe an important link between these two sectors. We could analyze what is the impact of the e-commerce on the tourism sector?
As say Z. Zhou (2004 p3) “the hospitality and tourism industry has always been among the first to capitalize on new technology”. This is justified by the fact tourism market is a sector where the distribution of the information is the key element and the Internet is the best way to realize that. People want the maximum of information on