The travel agent and tour operators are usually two separate service providers that handle different parts of the journey, not always exceptional, but the difference is the service they provide.
From a consumer point of view, the biggest change happened in 1992, because then everyone who offers travel services is responsible on the basis of their share and the expected profit that awaits them. This is a major development for the consumer side, as financial responsibility for potential liability is now shared with each responsible party.
Tour operators provide much more detailed services that need every little thing during the visit. It may not seem like a huge difference, but both sides are at a different end in case of any liability, etc. Since travel agents do not have huge bets on the whole trip, they are just in between, so they are making a commission on their services. In case of dissatisfaction or problem, they may not face huge lawsuits as they are not the main sellers.
The main difference between them is that the scope. Travel agents provide specific services, unless someone asks them to handle other things, they act as a go between the airlines and the passengers. It is expected that travel agents most often have businesses in their own offices and have no involvement in tour management or are unrelated to actual amenities and services.
The difference between an agent and a tour operator can also be seen in the way it is paid. Agents get a commission for their services for normal things like airline tickets and more. The agency is often very small compared to.
The services of both the tour operator and the travel agents are essentially interconnected, so some of the organizations are beginning to undertake both activities. However, this rarely happens because the tasks of tour operators are huge compared to the travel agent.