Tourism is a rapidly changing industry. Outline the key trends in tourism demand at the start of the 21th century and examine their impact on accommodation providers.
Tourism is a travel outside for the usual environment. People travel for recreational, leisure or business purposes. The 21th Century tourism has become a popular global leisure activity that will grow in new heights as it becomes more accessible to a larger cross section of the global population. The tourism industry is one of the most resilient and dynamic sectors of the economy and will result in commensurate economic opportunities for developed and emerging destinations around the world. A big number of challenges will be also created in attracting and serving increased tourism demand and in mitigating any potential negative externalities that will emerge as a result of tourism’s rapid growth. The tourist industries of the successful destinations will strike a sense of balance in developing by monitoring international trends, ensuring that the benefits of tourism are more than any potential negative impact and achieve a more fair distribution of tourism profits. Tourism is a profitable business and that is a good reason for countries to focus on honing their abilities in tourism. The 21th century improves that tourism is a rapidly changing industry.
In 2001 was a decrease of 0, 6% in international tourist arrivals, compared with 2000, and the decrease is continued for the first six months of the 2002 of 0, 2%. In 2008, there were over 922 million international tourist arrivals, with a growth of 1.9% as compared to 2007. International tourism receipts grew to 642 billion euro in 2008, which mean an increase in of 1.8%. The international demand for a travel suffered a slowdown that began in June 2008, as a result of the late 2000 recession. During the first eight months of 2008 the growth from 2007 to 2008 was only 3.7%. The markets of Asian and Pacific were affected. Europe stagnated during the summer, while the Americas performed better, reducing their expansion rate but keeping a 6% growth from January to August 2008. During the same period the Middle East continued its rapid growth reaching a 17% growth as compared to the same period in 2007. This slowdown on international tourism demand was also reflected in the air transport industry, with a negative growth in September 2008 and a 3.3% growth in passenger traffic through September. The hotel industry also reports a slowdown, as room occupancy continues to decline. During September and October the global economic situation deteriorated dramatically, as a result of the global financial crisis. For the remaining of 2008 the growth of international tourism is expected to slow even further continuing into 2009. The slowdown in demand growth has already hit the top spender countries. The long-haul travel is the most affected by the economical crisis. This negative trend intensified as international tourist arrivals fell by 8% during the first four months of 2009, and the decline was exacerbated in some regions due to the outbreak of the influenza AH1N1 virus.
During 21th century tourism industry is characterized by numerous issues and trends that present threats and opportunities. Many countries suffered from terrorist threats that have been increased. After the attacks in New York and Washington that followed by two wars, in Afghanistan and Iraq and continued with terrorist attacks in the Bali (bombing 2002 and 2005), in London, Madrid, Bangkok and other destinations. The result of this terrorist attacks is to increase the need of people for safety and security. These procedures are creating inconvenience. Inconvenience we see at the airports with longer lines and in visa policies and standards that are stricter. Another issue of this century is that China growth into a large source markets in the Asia Pacific region. China has become a primary focus of the world’s tourism industry and the Chinese nationals have been increasingly visiting international destinations and this trend will continue to increase from now on. During this century new destinations are coming to the tourism market. India, Egypt, South Korea, Vietnam, New Zealand, South Africa, Eastern Europe and the Philippines have been recently launched. As a result competition to mainstay destinations, such as Australia, Thailand, Singapore, and Malaysia, increases. The UNWTO’s Tourism 2020 Vision forecasts that international arrivals are expected to reach nearly 1.6 billion by the year 2020. The total tourist arrivals by region shows that by 2020 the top three receiving regions will be Europe (717 million tourists), East Asia and the Pacific (397 million) and Americas (282 million), followed by Africa, the Middle East and South Asia. Regions like Europe and America are expected to show lower rates. Europe will achieve the highest level of arrivals, although there will be a decline from 60% in 1995 to 46% in 2020. It will be fast grow in the long-haul travel worldwide at 5.4% per year over the period 1995-2020, than intraregional travel, at 3.8%. In an attempt to increase the value and synergy for the tourist and the participating economies the emergence of sub-regional cooperative agreements is on the rise. In the long term prospects is also to increase the awareness and consciousness among travellers for the sustainable and green tourism.
For many countries tourism is vital. Greece, Thailand, Egypt, Fiji, Maldives are examples of these counties due to the large intake of money for businesses with their goods and services and the opportunity for employment in the service industries associated with tourism.¶ These service industries include hospitality services, such as accommodations, including hotels and resorts. Even with problems related to the global economic slowdown, travel and tourism are already part of consumer behavior. That mean that people like to travel are still willing to travel. The European countries have observed increases in domestic tourism, more travel within the same region, increases in travel by road and rail, increases in the individual trips, more direct booking, and an increased use of low-cost airlines. Some changes are temporary but many of them are structural. The supply has two main elements, the destinations and the industry. The future of the destinations depends on their ability to adapt to demand. The effects are more visible in the industry. The tour operators and the accommodation providers have been hit harder by the weakness of the outbound markets, later booking, the tendency towards shorter length of stay, and cost-cutting on business trips. The industry has to adapt to these new facts. The hotels all over the world enjoyed a boom through mid 2007. The levels of the occupancy were high as the room rates and the levels of the travelers were strong. However, the global financial crisis put a damper on hotel occupancy that continued into 2008 and 2009. A big number of hotel construction projects have been cancelled. Travel and tourism operators best-positioned to suffer the least damage are those able to offer low-priced options. In order to avoid losing sales ¶during the periods of economic slowdown hotels and airlines have increasingly invested in low-cost brands. This economic downturn led to an increase of demand for low and mid-priced hotel and decreased the demand for luxury hotels. The travellers looking for economy travel accommodation. On the other hand the average daily room rates become higher because of the non-existed competition and the low number of chained hotel outlets.
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