With January almost upon us, it's interesting to reflect on how much the travel industry has changed over the last fifteen years - and the change has come about mainly because the power the consumer has today is infinitely more than in the past.
And it's not because the economic situation has meant that holiday companies have to compete harder to get a good share of the market, although this is true.
The tourist today has more power because he or she is better informed than ever before.
No longer is it a cse of hoping that a member of staff at the High Street travel agent has been to the same destination you have been considering, to advise of the best resort and accommodation.
Today before booking for example a holiday in Tenerife, people are able to check online reviews from (mainly) real people who have been there recently, and by reading a few of the travel reviews you are able to get a picture of whether a hotel is up to the standard you would expect.
And now it's going a stage further. While in the past you have been able to see a conventional Tenerife map, now Google has Street View where you can check the surrounding streets to see what it's really like in the neighbourhood.
To read more about how technology is changing the travel industry, and the shift in power to the consumer, visit this blog which has an article about it and more Tenerife information