History & Context

A Growth Industry

How would your business thrive if you were the first to build a footprint in a new destination? Imagine the opportunity you’d have to own desirable new product, exciting experiences and innovative itineraries while your competitors are dusting off tired packages from twenty years ago. Need to earn community support for developing your region as a tourism destination? This course has got you covered too. In this fun, quick course, you’ll learn how tourism has grown to be one of the world’s biggest industries. We’ll show you how major destinations sprung up around the globe.  You’ll step away from this course knowing how to spot emerging destinations and exciting tour products that inspire a new generation of customers so you can sell more trips. We break down complex economic data, open up the resource library and put you in touch with industry leaders so you have the tools you need to convince your stakeholders. Tourism is a concept, an industry and a valuable commodity! Let’s take a look, together, at these fascinating, practical trends from both domestic and international marketplaces so you can be more successful! A brief history of tourism growth, development, local and global impact.

Course curriculum

    1. Welcome to The Tourism Academy

    2. Download Your Course Workbook

    3. How to Get Help (Additional Resources)

    4. Introduce Yourself

    1. Tourism Defined

    2. Early Origins: The Birth of Tourism

    3. Technology & Globalization - Before WWII

    4. Post WWII Technology, Globalization

    5. Workbook Activity

    1. Local Getaways - Day Trips and Domestic Tourism Growth

    2. Cast Study: The Beach Holiday

    3. Quick Exercise

    1. The Impact of Tourism Development

    2. Jobs. Jobs. Jobs.

    3. Tourism: An Export Product

    4. Economic Diversity

    5. Gathering Additional Data & Statistics

    6. Quick Quiz

    1. Course Recap & Wrap Up

    2. Next Steps & Action Items

About this course

  • Free
  • 20 lessons
  • 0 hours of video content


Stephen Ekstrom

Co-Founder, CEO & Nerd Whisperer

Advisory Panel Chair and Chief Strategist at The Tourism Academy | TourismAcademy.org is Stephen Ekstrom. Ekstrom began his career in the 1990’s on college radio at Quinnipiac University. He went on to create and deliver successful tourism development strategies for now thriving destinations, theme restaurants, cultural institutions, theatrical management companies, and some of the world’s most recognized attractions. He’s called upon to speak at colleges and universities, conferences and countless panel discussions each year. He hosts The Tourism Academy's Business Class podcast and is a featured writer for several travel magazines. He’s also been profiled by media giants like the New York Times, NBC, ABC, CBS Morning, and NY1.

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