Tourism is a great source of relaxation for people after tiring work for days or months on end. Many working individuals desperately look for holidays to come since that is the time they travel to exotic places and spend some quality time with their family. Children, especially, get very much excited about an impending tour. Those moments spent at a far-off place when the weather is just right turn out to be the unforgettable moments in our lives.
In addition to entertainment and relaxation, tourism can be important for all countries from the economic point of view. Countries which can be accessed by road, air and through sea will have huge revenues from the tourism sector. People who are fond of travelling may visit the same country more than once. If they are successful in convincing their friends about the destination, they may also visit the place. Therefore, tourism is a major source of income for any country.
Tourism can be very much interesting because it provides us with a chance of knowing unknown places, cultures and traditions. We can discover new traditions, customs, ethnic food and drinks. It is a great chance to meet people from different parts of the world and make friends with them. It is a golden opportunity to learn different languages and cultures and expand our knowledge. Tourism can create job opportunities such as tourist guide or managers or in supporting industries like food production and other retail suppliers. Increased spending can enhance local small scale businesses.
Different people view tourism differently. Some tourists do not respect the local lifestyle and traditions. Jobs involved in the tourism industry are largely seasonal and are not well paid. Countries that are dependent on tourism for their major revenue will suffer a lot because of this mentality of some tourists. Seasonal jobs of the tourism industry can ultimately lead to high rates of unemployment. The negative impacts of tourism can include inflation, leakage, infrastructure, incidental cost etc. The value or price of land and building will increase sharply because of tourism. Leakage refers to the large amount of money spent by tourists who leave a particular country. It can affect any economy in three ways:
- Tourists purchase goods and services which are imported. This activity will badly affect the host country which received the imported goods and services.
- Hotels and other business enterprises import goods and food either because the local products are not available or they are not up to the mark expected by the tourists.
- Profits can be repatriated by foreign owners of hotels and other services.
These are the predictable outcomes of tourism on different economies. Apart from these consequences, there could be natural calamity, terrorists’ attack, changes in consumers’ tastes and economic recession too. These are the unpredictable and sudden effects which can shake any economy in the world. Tourism can also destroy the environment we live in. Man has cut down trees and reduced forest area for building hotels and other attractive construction to lure tourists. As a result, our atmosphere gets polluted, we will face an acute shortage of water and other resources. Though there are many associations which fight for preserving the nature and natural resources, their cries most often go unheard.
Most of the economies around the world have a clear, visible distinction between “the haves” and “the have nots.” It is indeed disheartening that only the rich people can afford to travel every year to far-off places which are gorgeous and exotic. A large number of people slog out throughout the year to make both ends meet. They cannot even dream of travelling once a year. What they can do at the most is to send their children for small trips with their friends. The negative impacts of tourism can be social and environmental. A country which is often visited by the British will adopt some of the British culture without even recognizing that they have adopted an exotic tradition. Therefore, tourism can be termed a double-edged sword which is a mixture of both positive and negative impacts.
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