Tourism can bring many benefits to a destination. Tourism can positively impact an area’s economy, social cultural, and environment. At the same time, there can be negative effects to the economy, social cultural, and environment. The tourism industry is extremely large and continuously growing, which is why the impacts and effects weigh so heavily on a destination. Traveling and engaging in touristic pursuits are popular leisure activities. New trends emerge as tourism continues to grow. Two interesting trends that are surfacing are Soft Tourism and the future of Space Tourism. Both will have an impact on tourism and expand the industry as a whole.
When tourism is thriving, local economies greatly benefit from the effects. Tourism can bring in large amounts of revenue to communities including tax revenue to local governments. High tourist-attracted areas create a demand for jobs and new opportunities for businesses. These jobs and businesses can be directly associated with tourism, like opening new hotels resulting in hiring a new staff, or employing workers for a new public transportation system. New jobs and businesses can be created in the industries supporting tourism, like food production companies or various retail suppliers. Tourists bring in new money, which is reused in the local economy by community members. This is known as the multiplier effect. Tourism also diversifies a destination because it can support a local economy with additional income if there are other industries suffering (How Tourism Benefits Communities, 2012). While there are many benefits tourism can have on local economies, tourism can also bring negative effects to the economy.
In order for a community to support visitors and tourism, there must be basic infrastructure established. Roads, airports, and forms of transportation are costly and the local government may not have the funds to support such projects. While tourism can generate additional jobs, often times these jobs are seasonal which does not give people the comfort of having job security. Many areas depend on tourism as the main source of income. These tourism-dependent destinations can be highly affected by events that will cause visitors to steer away. Things like terrorism or an economic recession can make these destinations less appealing for tourists (Positive & Negative Effects of Tourism). An example of this is something I personally experienced this summer when I visited Greece. Greece is a country that highly depends on tourism, and due to the current economic crisis, tourism has dramatically decreased. I’ve spent many summers in Greece when tourism is at its peak. There was a strong notable difference in the number of tourists. I have family that own hotels and work in hospitality, and their businesses are suffering due to the lack of visitors. A country or area like Greece that lacks income diversity is at risk when it comes to uncontrollable events that can harm tourism.
Raising social and cultural awareness is one of the greatest benefits of tourism. Traveling and being immersed into new cultures is the best way to learn about and appreciate the diverse world we live in. Cultures are exchanged between locals and visiting guests which enhances their knowledge of cultural understanding. Travelling and learning new things about countries, people, languages, and cultures first hand has been the greatest learning experience for me. Becoming more culturally aware has increased my knowledge of worldly issues, and sparks my interest on matters that concern people and places far outside my community.
Many negative social and cultural effects can follow when there is uncontrolled mass tourism. Areas that have trouble supporting tourism can experience more harm than good. Overcrowding may occur which can lead to the sense of overbearing tourists. Locals may feel a lack of privacy. Resentment can emerge which can lead to cultural clashing...