Tourism Benefits The Country

Do the benefits of tourism outweigh the costs?

Tourism Benefits The Country
Yes because...

Tourism vastly increases income to a particular area or country, not only via direct spending but al...

Tourism vastly increases income to a particular area or country, not only via direct spending but also through taxation and the purchase of luxury goods which creates a larger market than would be possible with purely local spending. In many less developed countries tourism acts as an alternative to cash crops, improving terms of trade and creating a more diversified economic base.
No because...
International tourism in particular may increase short-term returns, but at the cost of a dependence on the vagaries of fashions. A single climatic disaster, such as a hurricane, or a crime wave (as in South Africa), or terrorist attack (such as that at Luxor in 1997, where 58 tourists were attacked) will mean the market quickly collapses. Even without this, changing trends will mean tourist tastes shift every few years.

Tourism Benefits The Country
Yes because...

Revenue received from tourists can be reinvested in improving otherwise poorly funded infrastructure...

Revenue received from tourists can be reinvested in improving otherwise poorly funded infrastructure, both in areas visited and in the rest of the country too.
No because...
Often large sums of money are needed to attract tourists, so significant capital investment may be wasted (as in Jeju in South Korea, which is spending $3.6b over ten years). The spending is concentrated in resorts rather than spread across the country, or being put into providing for basic needs.

Tourism Benefits The Country
Yes because...

The multiplier effect of spending works through the economy to sustain levels of employment and incr...

The multiplier effect of spending works through the economy to sustain levels of employment and increase labour market flexibility. If local people are employed in the industry then they are more likely to accept the demands tourists make.
No because...
Many hotels are part of large international chains, choosing to exploit local labour purely because it is cheap. It is hard to get banks to lend money to set up smaller hotels as the investments are seen as too risky, and so artificially high interest rates deter investment or competition.

Tourism Benefits The Country
Yes because...

The recent trend of ‘ecotourism’ can provide benefits to serious research, such as in Belize where t...

The recent trend of ‘ecotourism’ can provide benefits to serious research, such as in Belize where tourist divers collect information for scientists (with a similar project regarding Australian whale sharks). Governments not otherwise inclined to protect such species will have a financial incentive as well as a moral imperative to do so if tourists encourage it.
No because...
So-called ‘ecotourism’ is as unsustainable as other forms, given the lack (apart from in Australia) of an accepted system of accreditation. ‘Ecotourism’ can entail anything from a sincere attempt to maintain the ecosystem to a packaged imitation of ‘real wildlife/culture’. Ironically, the attractions of unspoilt countryside are ruined by ever more visitors: tourism is a good example of classic market failure, where the social costs are paid by those receiving few, if any, of the benefits.

Tourism Benefits The Country
Yes because...

Carried out in the right way, tourism may not conflict with conservation. In York, maintaining geog...

Carried out in the right way, tourism may not conflict with conservation. In York, maintaining geographical separation between old and new buildings and refusing planning permission for certain heights of offices prevents architectural vandalism. Similar care has been taken on parts of the Sinai coast. In fact, artificial imitations in Las Vegas or Disneyworld serve to ease the pressure on original areas.
No because...
It is not purely ecosystems which are damaged by the pressure of consumption (e.g. by sewage output or pressure on water resources), but also ancient monuments or heritage sites. Millions of feet have eroded paths in the Peak District and the Great Wall of China. Cheaply constructed concrete hotels are unsympathetic to the architectural vernacular. Furthermore, noise pollution derives from clubs and bars provided for tourists.

Tourism Benefits The Country
Yes because...

There is a longstanding didactic tradition within tourism, which widens cultural knowledge and under...

There is a longstanding didactic tradition within tourism, which widens cultural knowledge and understanding across areas. It is possible to re-brand an area, such as Las Vegas, away from a negative image of gambling to a positive family orientated marketing strategy.
No because...
Tourism demands that an area conform to a certain stereotyped image, often preventing modernisation or development, or requiring the local inhabitants to make a caricature of their own culture. Local hostility is already turning to litigation over the issues of access to private beaches, diving areas, water and grazing land.

Tourism Benefits The Country
Yes because...

The numbers of tourists will continue to rise due to cheaper travel and greater access to previously...

The numbers of tourists will continue to rise due to cheaper travel and greater access to previously closed countries anyway – so it is better to try to provide facilities for them than to allow unlimited access.
No because...
The increased size of the industry is currently unsustainable. Infrastructure, and in particular airspace, is already unable to cope with the amount of journeys demanded – so ways must be found by which to reduce tourists artificially.


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