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Guilder G. (2000).Telecoms: How Infinite Bandwidths Revolutionize ourWorld. New York: Simon & Schuster
4444LECTURE FIVEELECTRONIC COMMERCE (E-COMMERCE)5.0Lesson HighlightsWelcome to the fifth lesson.In this lesson, we are going to have an overview ofthe e-commerce systems that are used in the hospitality and tourism industry.We are going to look at the four levels of e-commerce transactions and delveinto a bit more detail about specific applications of e-commerce in varioussectors of the hospitality and tourism industry5.1Lesson ObjectivesAfter studying this lesson, you should be able to:-1.Apply e-commerce architecture to hospitality networks2.Identify e-commerce functions for hospitality and tourism organisations5.2IntroductionThe business of hospitality consists primarily of interactions (guestrelations) that occur during the flawless processing of transactions (such aschecking into a hotel, placing a meal order etc). Since we are involved inconducting a business, we are engaged in the practice of commerce.Commerceis a broad term that is used to describe activities of a business or commercialenterprises.Electronic commerceinvolves transactions and interactions thatoccur through computer telecommunications media, such as the internet. E-commerce is the short hand term used to describe electronic commerce.Before the popularity of the internet, most business transactions andinteractions took place in person in a commercial building made of “bricks andmortar”. Beginning in the late 1990s, some retail establishments’ started to offercustomers the option of transacting on-line or in person. These businesses areusually referred to as “clicks and bricks” today. There are other businesses thatengage in commerce exclusively over the internet, such as Amazon.com or E-bay; those businesses formerly were referred to as dot-coms. Today e-commerce specialists call them “clicks-without-bricks” enterprises.5.2E-Commerce TransactionsElectronic commerce includes allbusiness functions that maybe processed overtelecommunications networks in any industry. For this reason, the terme-businessis usedinterchangeably withe-commerce. General e-business or e-commerce transactions occur at fourlevels of transactions.
45455.2.1The Four Levels of E-Commerce Transactionsi.B2C transactionsB2C transactions involve business to consumer interactions. A person who goeson-line to book an airline reservation or hotel; room (consumer) is engaged inthat transaction with the reservations department of an airline or hotel (businessii.B2B transactionsB2B transactions occur between two business entities. Let us say you book ahotel room through Orbitz, an online booker of travel and accommodationarrangements.Orbitz is a business that pre-purchases blocks of rooms from agiven hotel (another business) for sale to you at discounted prices. Thearrangement between Orbitz and the hotel is a B2B transaction whereas yourinteraction as an online customer of Orbitz is a B2C transaction.