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What are the Different Types of Travel Services?

Mary Elizabeth
Updated May 23, 2024
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Travel services is a very broad area, covering everything from making your trip to another country legal to getting you a reduced cost on your flight and a vegetarian in-flight meal, booking you at a hotel with a hot tub, and providing you with driving directions. Because travel now takes place so often, both for work and for pleasure, and in so many ways, there are a wide variety of travel services to serve different types of travel needs.

Government Agencies
The governments of most countries have an agency that issues travel documents and works to ensure the safety of their citizens who are traveling abroad. For example, if you are a U.S. citizen traveling to another country, part of your travel preparation may involve a passport and a visa, and the Department of State is the provider for those documents. The DOS website is also a good place to check for any safety or health considerations in the region you plan to visit. In addition, you can register your visit on their website and have a point of contact in the country you visit so that in the case of any kind of emergency—even just something arising that means you need to get home quickly—and the U.S. Embassy, wherever you are will try to assist you.

Airline, Train, Bus, and Cruiseline Travel Reservations Services
Businesses that are in the transport business at least will offer you a reservations service for their own services, but some may offer much more. This includes packages with hotel and car rental, entertainment, sightseeing tours, and other features.

Travel Agents and Reduced Rate Booking Services
Local and national travel agencies, and services such as Travelocity, Expedia, and Priceline differ from the group above because they do not actually provide the service you are seeking, but just have more or less of a hand in arranging it for you. A travel agent does the footwork for you, while with the discount services, you will likely have to invest your own time seeking and comparing until you find what you want.

Roadside Safety Services
Companies like the American Auto Association (AAA), have offered roadside travel services for a long time. Some roadside assistance is limited to that service, and will help you with flat tires, lost keys, stuck vehicles, needed gas or coolant, and towing. But with AAA, some of the benefits that members enjoy include emergency road service, trip planning assistance, car rentals, and discount travel services.

Garage and Service Station Tow Trucks
If you need travel assistance because of a breakdown and you don’t have a roadside assistance plan, you may find towing and repair services at a local garage or service station. These businesses will usually tow your car to the service location of your choice or take your car to their place of business for repair. If you live or are staying nearby, you might even get a ride home while they repair your car.

In-Vehicle Assistance
In-vehicle assistance systems, like OnStar, offer a range of services for driver safety and travel. They provide trip planning, respond in case of a crash, offer assistance if the vehicle is stolen, can give turn-by-turn navigation, and can diagnose vehicle issues before they become big problems. These systems are sold with the vehicle.

511 Information Services
From the U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration website, you can access the page entitled “511 America’s Traveler Information Telephone Number.” This page contains a map that clarifies the status of each state’s 511 service, with links to the services that have been deployed.

WiseTour is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
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Mary Elizabeth
By Mary Elizabeth , Writer
Passionate about reading, writing, and research, Mary Elizabeth is dedicated to correcting misinformation on the Internet. In addition to writing articles on art, literature, and music for WiseTour, Mary works as a teacher, composer, and author who has written books, study guides, and teaching materials. Mary has also created music composition content for Sibelius Software. She earned her B.A. from University of Chicago's writing program and an M.A. from the University of Vermont.

Discussion Comments

By Amphibious54 — On May 01, 2011

@GlassAxe-I have found that the cheapest prices on internet vacation travel services are found on Tuesday and Wednesday in the early afternoon. Between Friday and Sunday, you will likely find the most expensive prices, even if all of the trip details are exactly the same.

Another thing I have noticed is that these travel sites play off each other, I am assuming through the use of third party cookies. I usually turn my third party cookies off in my web browser because they are rarely necessary and it is set on by default. All third party cookies are really good for is so companies can communicate your search preferences with each other and target their advertising.

By GlassAxe — On Apr 30, 2011

How do I figure out the complexity of finding the best price on an online travel agency? It seems like I check the tickets one day, and they are cheap. I return to my computer a couple of days later and the prices have shot up. There times, it will say one price, but as soon as I go to order my tickets, it says that the demand for tickets has increased so the price has changed.

It is frustrating to me that I cannot seem to find a cheap ticket price, especially if I search multiple web travel services.

By sputnik — On Nov 28, 2009

The 511 service is an excellent help for commuters. In some communities such as San Diego, California it is growing fast, and many thousands of calls are placed in, while other large numbers of commuters access the information on the Web.

When you have an emergency on a freeway it is good to know that help is only 511 dial away.

Mary Elizabeth

Mary Elizabeth


Passionate about reading, writing, and research, Mary Elizabeth is dedicated to correcting misinformation on the...
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