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What's in a name: a review of popular new words to describe holidays – a clever marketing ploy or a pointless waste of time?

By Brian Hay


Traditionally, tourism classifications are based around the function of the trip, such as holiday, business tourism (including conferences, conventions, and exhibitions) and Visiting Friends and Relatives (VFR). In one of the first major studies of the tourism industry Ogilvie (1933, p.75) suggested that ‘a broad, unphilosophical antithesis is commonly drawn between business and pleasure tourism’. He also and noted that there are two main groups of tourists and eight main categories for foreign visitors: Wealthier Groups (Business Visitors, etc.) and Less Wealthy Groups (Seaman, etc.). By 1937 the League of Nations developed a set of four tourism categories: holidays, business, health and social purposes. In the early 1960s the International Union of Official Tourism Organisations (IUOTO, 1963) still used the terms as outlined by the League of Nations in 1937, with the addition of ‘students’. In 1994, the United Nations and the World Tourism Organization officially endorsed a set of terms to classify tourism, which are in common use today (holidays, business, VFR, etc.)

Publisher: Queen Margaret University
Year: 2010
OAI identifier: oai:eresearch.qmu.ac.uk:1502

Suggested articles



  1. (2009). America Revels in ‘Funemployment’. The Sunday Times. Chesshyre,
  2. (2009). Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary. doi
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  4. (2003). Sports World Doesn’t Stop for Vacation. The Myrtle Beach Sun-News.
  5. (2009). The Great American Staycation and the Risk of Stillness.
  6. (1933). The Tourism Movement.
  7. (2009). To Get Away From it all Get Pregnant.
  8. (2009). Vacation or Staycation. Accessed from www.neumann.edu/academics/divisions/business/journal/review09/fox.pdf International Union of Official Tourism Organisations.

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