Essay: Tourism Demand Research &amp Analysis

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[. . .] Travel and tourism is a viable economic development alternative as it injects money from outside sources into the local economy, primarily through visiting tourism spending on locally produced goods and services. As an export-based industry, tourism generates regional income that contributes to the development of other services and amenities, such as housing and retail that are used by local residents. Such industries are characterized as having a "competitive advantage."

During the last five years Switzerland received an average 15,810 arrivals annually. Statistics show a gradual but slow increase in the number of tourists arrived at Switzerland with 11,878 tourists in 2005 and 13,747 in 2010. (Euro monitor, 2011)

Considering the business and leisure arrivals, the number of leisure arrivals is greater. On an average of 8, 757 tourists visited Germany annually during the last five years while the average number of leisure tourists has been 19m946 per year.

Tourism Attraction Sales

Five years data on tourism attraction sales show that sales increased by USD 1250 Million to USD 1330 Million which is a proof of improvement in Switzerland tourism industry.

Tourism attractions in Switzerland include Casinos which generated highest amount of revenue (USD 909.7 annually) followed by Theme/Amusement Parks (USD 117.5 Annually); Museums (USD 100.8) and National Parks (USD 85.2)

Table 1-Tourism Attraction Sales 2005-2010 (Switzerland)

Categories

2005

2006

2007

2008

2009

2010

Average

Tourist Attractions

1,252.9

1,347.3

1,434.4

1,454.1

1,330.6

1,360.4

1,363.3

Art Galleries

34.2

36.1

37.6

38.2

37.1

38.1

36.9

Casinos

Circuses

0.0

Historic Buildings/Sites

15.5

16.1

16.9

17.1

16.2

16.4

16.4

Museums

93.5

96.7

99.4

National Parks/Areas Of Natural Beauty

77.7

83.1

86.5

87.5

88.0

88.2

85.2

Theatres

0.0

Theme/Amusement Parks

Zoos/Aquariums

73.0

76.8

82.4

84.3

83.6

93.7

82.3

Other Tourist Attractions

13.5

14.0

15.1

15.2

14.9

15.4

14.7

Source: Travel and Tourism: Euro monitors from trade sources/national statistics

Cambodia

As compared to Switzerland we see lesser number of international arrivals at Cambodia received with an average of 2290 arrivals annually. The five years (2005-2010) data show that international business and leisure increased during this time period, as in 2005 the number of international arrivals at Cambodia was 1421 which rose to 2386 in 2010 (Euromonitor, 2011)

While seeing the arrivals by purpose of visits we see that an average of 2,125 individuals visited Cambodia for leisure purpose while remaining 165 arrived at Cambodia fro business purpose. Similarly, in Switzerland an average of 13,151 persons arrived for leisure purpose and remaining 2659 visited Switzerland for the purpose of business. (Euromonitor, 2011)

Tourism Attraction Sales

The author chose to conduct data analysis sales during 2005 to 2010 to explore the tourism demand and growth of Cambodia. Table-2 presents six years data on tourism attraction sales and it is clear that sales increased by USD 49.3 Million to USD 140 Million which is a proof of improvement in Switzerland tourism industry.

4. Tourism & Employment

Attempts at measuring the economic impacts of tourism on economies have been made since the early 1990s (see Maki, 1989, Fletcher, 1989, Fletcher and Archer, 1991) and the frustration in accurate measurement techniques shortly followed (see OECD, 1991, Zhou. 1997, Okubo and Planting, 1998). Additionally, empirical studies showed that impact variables, such as regional multipliers, varied substantially. Attempts to allocate state-wide measurements at the regional or county level were affected by the size of a region and its local population (Weirsma, 2004). Chang (2002) established that tourism multipliers have a significant relationship to the natural log of a region's population. Chang also determined that employment multipliers have an inverse relationship to population and output multipliers have a positive relationship to population. Fletcher. (2001) ranked income multipliers by country and found that multipliers were larger for larger and more developed economies

An examination of the literature reveals a number of benefits that are gained by host countries through the promotion of their tourism industries. One of the most commonly listed is the creation of jobs (Edgell, 1990; Poirier, 1995; Teo, 2003; Vanegas Sr. & Croes, 2003). Edgell states that in the late 1980s, the tourism industry in the United States generated approximately 6 million jobs with total estimated payrolls of about $74 million. He adds that not only does the tourism industry require high numbers of highly skilled workers, but it also provides employment for "hard-to employ lower-skilled labor."

Additional variation can be found by tourism type. In a study for the Scottish Parliament (2002), tourism was defined through two categories; hard tourism such as accommodations, and soft tourism; such as land-based tourism including estates, farms and forests. Based on a study by Slee (1997), the money spent in hard tourism was found to leave the economy much quicker than money collected through soft tourism. This was explainable because the large firms associated with hard sectors were less connected to the local economy. However, traditional economic measurement techniques were unable to separate hard tourism from soft tourism expenditures.

Tyrell (1999) found that while day trippers had similar multipliers as overnight visitors, seasonal residents have a lower impact because a large proportion of their purchases were out of state. Finally, seasonal variations in a country's gross domestic product create unreliable effects of tourism spending.

Roche (1992) also remarks that, "probably the main political and social stimuli and motivations for developing a tourism industry at all derive from its assumed potential to generate employment," (p. 567).

Hall (1994) writes that tourism's importance to European Economic Community's development plan has to do with the perception that it is a labor-intensive industry that provides greater opportunities for employment unlike other industries that have replaced human labor with machinery.

Another benefit Edgell talks about is the multiplier effect that results from tourism-related activities. For instance, as tourists pay for their meals in restaurants, the restaurant operators in turn use a part of that revenue to purchase more food items from local grocery stores and suppliers. They, in turn, use part of their revenue to purchase more items from agricultural producers. Therefore, in effect, the initial revenue generates a ripple effect in the economy.

Another aspect of the multiplier effect that occurs has to do with the fact that the tourism industry is not isolated, but closely linked to other services and industries. So that as the tourism industry expands, there is an accompanying expansion in these associated industries with the potential to generate additional employment.

There is also the provision, development and/or upgrade of tourism-related infrastructure that can be seen as a benefit of tourism (Hall, 1994). This can involve housing, transportation, and health facilities and services.

5. Suggestions

"Despite its recent difficulties, the T&T sector is widely recognized as a critical sector worldwide and one that provides significant potential for economic growth and development. A growing national T&T sector contributes to employment, raises national income, and can improve a country's balance of payments" (World Economic Forum, 2011)

In order to construct a successful tourism development strategy, it is necessary to understand both the supply and demand sides of the industry. It requires the voluntary commitment of tourism companies to apply environmentally sustainable management practices as well as demand for these practices from consumers (Dewhurst & Thomas, 2003; Liu, 2003; Rivera, 2004). Research confirms a trend toward consumer preference for environmentally friendly products, such as ecotourism and sustainable tourism practices (Luzaz & Cosse, 1998b).

Van den Bergh and Van der Straaten (1994) defined sustainability as "the ability to be continued indefinitely in time." Although it had been previously mentioned in the literature, sustainability in relation with impact of human on the natural environment has especially attracted the attention of researchers during the past two decades. Sustainability also concerns economic development. In developing countries, environmental problems seem to result from overpopulation and poverty. Under the burden of increasing population, most developing countries have no choice but to overexploit natural resources for food and energy (Parikh & Parikh, 1998).

"Sustainable tourism" is an -- specific topic of sustainable development. From this perspective, tourism contains elements of both economic growth and the desire to sustain the resources upon which this growth depends for a long period of time. However, some researchers have argued that the impacts of tourism on the natural environment are insignificant compared to the impacts from the other industries (Gee, 1989). For this reason, (M.Honey, 1999) suggests that sustainable tourism development should focus more on sustaining the social and cultural structure rather than on the ecological dimension of sustainability. However, another point of vie in the tourism literature argues that ecological dimensions are as important as social and economic aspects of sustainable tourism because tourism itself has been repeatedly shown to impose significant impacts on the natural environment (Nelson, 1999; Peters, 1969; Nowforth & Munt, 1998).

Tourism, by its nature, requires constant interaction between tourists and host communities. As a result, cultural and social disruption is a serious issue (V.L. Smith, 1977). In addition to economic measurement such as income and economic growth,… [END OF PREVIEW]

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