What is the old name for booking?

  • Jul 09, 2024
What is the old name for booking?

It was known as Booking in the past.

Booking means making an appointment or ordering a product such as a hotel, car, flight, Movie ticket, etc. This has made it very normal these days to book things through website and application interfaces. However, the meaning of booking is not limited to the reservations made online only in the past few years. The term is older in origin and in its usage as well.

The Origins of "Booking"

The word booking has roots in the shipping industry and has been used since the 18th century. In the moving of cargo in ships, the act of placing or tying down the cargo was known as booking freight. The record of each item of the cargo in a ship was known as the book.

Thus, the verb to book was to enter into something in a logbook or ledger, as in the case of the old usage of the word. It referred to writing or recording provisions made for the conveyancing of cargoes or persons. The noun booking for instance originally referred to the record of a given reservation made in a book.

Thus, gradually, with the increasing popularity of travel, the word booking came to denote advance arrangements for a journey. But it still referred mainly to the act of recording the name of a person in a register or a list. Booking entailed making a physical trip to a ticketing agent, tourism bureau, or service provider where you would physically find someone recording your reservation.


Literature related to the topic of discussion In this paper, the analysis will focus on the Age of Travel Agents.

For many years up to the late 1900s, the process of selecting and making bookings for traveling was mostly done by travel agencies. If you want to book a vacation, you should first consult with the travel agency. The agent would then proceed to organize and arrange for issues such as transport, accommodation, and sightseeing among others all in a bid to facilitate your trip. They would use telephone calls to enquire with hotels, airlines, and tourism offices on available dates for bookings and make the bookings in your name.

Owing to the absence of computerized reservation systems, the travel agent maintained all the reservations in physical books or registers. In the case of each client, they recorded the schedules they made on their behalf. During this time, just like now, the simple concept of booking a trip was still that an agent would put one's name in a reservation book.

The Introduction of Computers

The two travel agencies; during the 1970s and early 1980s started to evolve from manual reservation through paper and pencil to computerized reservation systems. To support this new market and technology development, large networks referred to as Computer Reservations Systems (CRSs) were established by airlines and travel technology companies. It became possible for travel agents to log on to the CRS networks to determine flight/hotel availability and make immediate bookings.

Previously, bookings could have been recorded by writing them down on paper and then submitting them, but with this new technology, agents could input the bookings directly into the computer system. Some early CRSs were Sabre, Apollo, Worldspan, and Amadeus amongst others. These turned out to be very useful tools for booking in the tourism industry. They enhanced productivity and brought the price and other essential information to the users in real-time.

The trend that has been observed is the shift from traditional booking methods to the online mode.

However, the internet was perhaps the biggest revolution in this regard as it introduced a great deal of change in the booking process. Therefore, as the capabilities of the online system progressed through the 1990s, booking systems began to be provided to the consumer via the Internet and software. Consumers could go through holiday offers and avail of flights, accommodations, and others with a few clicks or swipes.

Expedia, Travelocity Priceline, and other similar third-party sites had by the beginning of the twenty-first century popularized the concept of a single site that could provide all the travel-related services. It means that these sites work in cooperation with airlines, hotels, and other suppliers where they can obtain real-time rates and availability. By visiting these sites, travelers can get all their options in one place and make bookings online too.

And as this new digital booking process came up, it was immediately apparent that this is much better than the old one. This has become the new trend due to the availability of online booking facilities such as travel booking websites, online search engines as well as vendors' websites. The old-fashioned travel agencies have changed their importance as compared to the earlier times.

And this tiny word, booking, will never be the same again. What was once a technical terminology felt within the realm of recording reservations has evolved into a common parlance for organizing travel through the Internet. Instead of flipping through a book of accounts, people turn to looking up online travel agencies and applications.

The Impact of Technology

The findings show that the growth of techno drivers has brought major shifts to the travel industry. The use of global distribution systems to enhance service delivery in the handling of reservations was effective. Additionally, the application of friendly booking sites opened up the availability of bookings directly to the consumers.

Originally a tool reserved for travel agencies, booking capabilities are now within easy reach of anyone with internet access. They became easily accessible through online bookings and this boosted the uptake of travel and tourism. That demand was met with many different types of lodging and transportation services that are considered niche today.

Brand new industries like vacation rental, ride-sharing, and experience tourism would hardly exist without the help of the World Wide Web Booking. Mobile apps and Virtual/Augmented reality technologies are some of the trending technologies that are revolutionizing the booking process.

What the Future Holds

While in the past, most of the paperwork concerning itineraries was done manually and on paper, it has only taken a few decades to go towards nearly real-time digital transactions. Hence, the meaning of booking changed during a significant part of history, and what is more, this meaning is quite different now. Sometimes, it means something good and at other times it is associated with something negative, and in the future, it may even have a completely different meaning.

It may also potentially shift towards virtual and augmented reality to make bookings of hotels, tours, or even the destination itself. There are technologies such as voice, which may lead to chatbots and other conversational interfaces for making bookings. With time, the options for travel and also the technology to be used in the booking process will also change.

However, at this stage, booking means simply using computers to find information on services and facilities that you wish to book yourself. Gone are the days of typing in the name into the reservation ledgers it is now as simple as hitting the submit button on a form. The travel industry on the same note keeps on changing and evolving everyday due to new inventions.

Thus, having looked into its origin and development, it is possible to say that while the general meaning of the term booking is quite different from the original idea of renting spaces for travelers, it still adheres to the core of the concept. The methods may not be easily identifiable to someone who is from the past, probably a few decades ago. But, without a doubt, booking is still an important aspect of organizing any kind of trip.

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