This is a discursive paper which analyses the tourism industry from a global perspective. Tourism has been noted as one of the most proactive industries in the service sector of the global economy. Therefore, the paper looks at many factors that surround the tourism industry in the world. The paper begins by giving a global overview of the tourism industry. This is then followed by the main discursive task which is the placement and analysis of the industry. The analytical discussion is based on how different pillars of development are affected by the industry and how the tourism industry affects then. The impact of tourism on political, economic, and sociocultural development is brought out in the discussion. The discussion ends by giving a standpoint of what is considered to be the future look of the industry.
Table of Contents
Overview of the tourism and language industry. 5
Tourism and multilingual competence across the globe. 6
Influence of tourism on other industries. 7
The economic benefits accruing to global tourism.. 11
Tourism and political development 14
Future prospects for the industry. 15
Tourism and Language
Tourism has been mentioned as one of the fastest growing sub-sector of the services sector in many countries in the world. With global tourism increasing, many economies that have good tourist destination are ripping a lot both financial and non-financial benefits from the sector. Tourism is valued in most economies because it is one of the main sectors that enhance foreign exchange earnings. This is considered the sole benefit of tourism. Many activities go on within the tourism industry which makes it not just a business, but also a stimulator of growth for other factors in the economies. Among the economic growth factors that are stimulated by tourism is the growth in language use and cultural practices in tourist destinations. Increased global movements and interactions due to globalization are impacting positively on the growth of the global tourism industry. More and more people are learning new international languages so that they can be able to transact with other people in proxy places. This is a booster to the global tourism industry. The tourism and language industry is expected to continue growing and bringing more positive impacts to the development of economies across the globe.
This paper discuses the tourism and language industry from a global or open approach. The paper begins by giving an overview of the industry. This is followed by an explanation of the role that is being played by language in tourism. It then proceeds to discussing the role that is played by the industry in bringing about development in economies across the world. The paper explores all aspects of development that accrue to the tourism and language industry. This entails the expansiveness of the industry; its effects on social and political developments in the international scene. The paper also covers the challenges or inhibiting factors to the growth of tourism and language industry.
Overview of the tourism and language industry
As earlier noted, the tourism industry is becoming one of the most significant industries in most economies in the world. This forms the basis of the observation that many governments are safeguarding their tourism sectors with a lot of zeal. Tourism has is still associated with the acquisition and growth of wealth. This happens both at the local or national levels and even globally. Well, this is not in any way far from the truth as apart from international exports, tourism earns many countries foreign currencies. Foreign currencies are crucial in the enhancement of the balance of payments for any state. This is the main direct economic benefit that is born out of the industry. There are many other indirect benefits that are derived from the industry. This can be explained in terms of many other industries that are heavily dependent on tourism. These include the Hotel and restaurant industry as well as the transport industry. Apart form the economic benefits that are gotten out of tourism, it is also important to note that the industry has many other social and political benefits or influence. Tourism has an impact socio-cultural development. This happens in cases where culture is considered to be the main attracting factor for tourists (Swarbrooke 97).
National and international politics are also highly influenced by tourism. It could also be said that global tourism has an effects on the way politics of relation between states are conducted. This is better understood by looking at issues like travel advisories to potential tourist destinations due to security issues. The broadness of tourism and its impact in growth and development of economies can be best looked into by an understanding of different forms of tourism. Tourism is conducted in different ways. These include cultural tourism which centers on historical sites and events, sports tourism which focuses on sporting events and experiences and business tourism which center on business matters. Business tourism involves business trips in order to attend to business seminars or conferences either at the local, regional or even at the global level. Other forms of tourism are: shopping tourism, event of gastronomic tourism, health tourism, rural tourism, mountain tourism and seaside tourism (Swarbrooke 100).
Tourism and multilingual competence across the globe
Language plays an elaborate role in the tourism industry. All the service providers in the industry must factor in this important aspect in enhancing their efficiency and effectiveness in service provision. Multilingualism competence is considered as one of the requirements for service providers in the industry. Service providers include information offices that deal with tourism, tour operators as well as the transportation companies. These service providers deal with tourists from different parts of the world whose languages may not be the same as the language used in the destinations. Therefore, they are forced to promote the learning of international languages for them to be fully equipped to attend to the tourists. The learning of these languages promotes interaction between the tourists and the local providers which in turn result in exploitation of opportunities. With multilingual competence which is boosted by globalization, service providers in the tourism industry are able to maximize on the benefits. In other words, tourism promotes multi-lingual learning in many destinations across the globe. Through the development of multilingual competence, tourism is greatly enhanced. The learning of international languages increases the rate at which people transact thereby promoting global interaction. International language competencies promote other aspects of social, political, cultural and obviously economic development. The stud of foreign languages is now being institutionalized in many tourist destinations around the globe. Many people are enrolling in these institutions in order to gain what is referred to as lingual advantage (Duchêne and Piller 3).
Language also plays a critical role in the marketing and advertisement of tourism. The more the tourism texts are provided in different languages, the more they are likely to be understood by many people. Diversity in language learning in the industry bases on the level of usage and significance of the language. Languages like English, French, German and even Española have dominated in the global scene for a long time. However, recent developments at the global scene have made other languages to be of equal great significance in international transactions. Among the languages that have gained significance are the Chinese and Japanese languages. Because of the influence of these countries in trade, these countries present many opportunities in trade and investments. Therefore, competence in these languages is of value to the tourism industry (Pille 58).
Influence of tourism on other industries
(Mak, Lumbers and Eves (pp. 72) observe that there are many industries that have a close relationship or link with the tourism industry. One such industry is the global food industry. Research in the tourism industry has been focusing on the measurers of attracting tourists in different destinations. Just as there is competition in in other countries, there is also stiff competition in the tourism industry. This competition is perhaps different, in the sense that it emanates from the international stage. Nations that are known top be attractive tourist destinations have been working on ensuring that they remain competitive by attracting more tourists or guests. Research has revealed that there are many factors which serve as attractions to tourists in different tourist destinations. Among the noted factors of attraction for tourists is the nature of development in the food industry in tourist destinations. This argument is derived from the finding that the nature of food service in the destination area can serve as a determinant factor of choice of a tourist destination by tourists. Approximately one third of tourism expenditure goes to food and accommodation. This reiterates the essence of having a well developed food industry in tourist destinations. Food industry has attained a high level of growth due to the number of customers that are gotten from the tourism industry. Food consumption, as applied to tourism industry, has a great symbolic significance. Food tourism is considered an experience by tourists who value exploring different food cultures (Hall and Mitchell 30).
The food industry is being forced to be more innovative in developing new menus that are attractive to the tourists. The choice and preference of food is also widened by the virtue of creativity and innovation in the food industry. The tourism food industry is also being influenced by developments that result from globalizations. While different tourist destinations try to come up with unique ways of preparing and servicing meals, the pressure for a global foo culture has been mounting on them. The heavy presence of international food chains like Macdonald in many parts of the world is leading to the development of a global food culture. As a macro impact of globalization, many people in the food industry are considering to develop global cuisines as is done by the multinational food chains. This is killing the use of the food industry as one of the main tools of attracting tourists (Mak, Lumbers and Eves 172). According to Chang, Kivela and Mak (pp. 1090) globalization is presenting negative effects on the food industry.
Numerous benefits that could have been derived from the creativity in the food industry as a supportive industry to globalization are being suppressed by ideas like Macdonaldism. This advocates for the embrace of the easting culture of the multinational food stores. Thus local food menus are put to the edge by these ideas. Nations need to strive to promote tourism through the food industry by protecting the traditional menus which might serve as factors of attraction for tourists. Without this, the image and tradition of the local food industries remains exposed to threats of collapsing. Local delicacies have however become resistant to forces of globalization and the spreading of foreign eating cultures to different destinations (Chang, Kivela and Mak, 2011, pp. 308).
With tourism being considered as a factor for wealth creation, many aspects can be added to it to make it have more impact on other aspects of development. One way through which more income can be raised from the tourism sector is the application information and communication technology in tourism promotion. Tourism is considered to be a global industry because its customers and tourist attractions are spread across the world. This denotes the essence of efficient communication to enhance tourist activities and their role to wealth creation and development. The development in information and communication technology is argued to boos tourism; mostly from a single perspective of development which is the marketing and promotion of tourism. The administration, marketing as well as the promotion of tourist marketing destinations has greatly improved due to the application of information technology in tourism. The marketing of tourism destinations has been improved because it is easily to access details of tourist destinations using the internet and information communication technologies. This is stimulated by the fact that most tourist destinations are located in the developing nations. These destinations are visited by people from the developed nations who have high access to the internet besides having access to information technology gadgets. This enables them to study and identify tourist destinations that fit them (Minghetti 270).
Access to information and communication is however a limiting factor in most tourist destinations, especially the destinations found in developing economies. The potential of utilizing ICT in tourism enhancement can be fully realized if ICT adoption in tourist destinations is enhanced. This is being done in many parts of the world. In the developed world, local tourism has been maximized because of the widespread presence and used of the internet in promoting local tourism. This is also being done in the developing world though with very minimal progress. ICT usage promotes international tourism. However, tourism destinations in developing countries are still constrained because of low level adoption and usage of the internet in promoting tourism (Minghetti and Buhalis 268). As more digital technologies are availed the populations, the opportunities for destination marketing of tourism are enhanced. Many social media platforms are now available where tourism agencies can engage their potential customers or tourists. This is happening at a time when the role of the media in marketing has widened. The social media has even widened more the scope of tourism by opening up the channels through which people in distant places can exchange experiences thence promoting tourism (Minghetti 269).
The economic benefits accruing to global tourism
According to Dwyer and Forsyth (pp. 2) the tourism industry fetches income for many individuals as well as industries across the world. Many job and business opportunities in different sectors are crested out of the tourism industry. Many tourism firms have been developed from tourism. These include individual investments in offering services to the tourists. The services that are in the offing to tourists by the private investors include local transportation services, consultation and facilitation of stay in tourist destinations. Other opportunities are presented in terms of the sales of wares by local populations to the tourists. This earns them income thence promoting local economies. Local populations are the main building blocks for national economies which are in turn building blocks for regional and global economies. As far as the economic benefits of the tourism is concerned, there are many other examples. The tourism sector supports the transport sector. Most international plane companies benefit a lot from tourism by virtue of fetching the tourists to different destinations. More profits are made during tourist seasons in different parts of the world like during the holidays. Holiday makers travel to different destinations to spend holidays there. Also, more profits are realized from sports tourism. The global sporting events carry a lot of aspects of tourism in them. Examples include the Olympic Games and the FIFA world cup. These are the two mega sporting events that take place internationally. These games involve millions of both direct and indirect participants. Massive transportation of people is a common activity in such events thus denoting profit for transportation companies (Mak 142).
Companies that maximize on such events earn huge sums of money in terms of profits. The hotel industry is also another beneficiary form the tourism industry. The benefit to the hotel industry can be explained from two perspectives. The first one is that tourism encourages investment in the hotel and accommodation industry as it is the main source of customers for the hotel industry. Investors pump their money in the hotel industry knowing that they will get profits from the industry because of the flow of tourists. This happens out of prospects or perceived benefit from the tourism industry. Therefore, the hotel industry grows as a result of the performance of the tourism industry. The second perspective of the contribution of the tourism industry to the growth of the hotel industry is that the hotel industry complements the functioning of the tourism industry. In fact, these two industries are in most cases interlinked. The tourism industry cannot survive without the presence of fully functioning hotel industry. The vice versa is true because tourists are motivated by the assurance that there are good hotels in tourist destinations (Mak 142).
The economic benefits of tourism cannot be fully exploited without mentioning the aspect of employment and job creation. Tourism is a source of employments for many people across the world. The employment is both direct and indirect. This is a sigh of relief to most economies bearing in mind that unemployment is the major macro-economic force affecting most countries in the world today. There are those people who are directly employed in the tourist sector. These include people working with tourist agencies. A majority of people are indirectly employed in the sector. This includes people who have been employed in other sectors that are supported by the tourism sector. They include people working in the hotel and restaurant industry. However, many people argues that the tourism industry cannot be entirely depended upon for improving economic development as full employment cannot be achieved in the industry itself. The argument resonates from the fact that tourist activities take place on seasonal bases. In other words, there are high seasons of performance in tourism as well as low season performance during which operations in the industry fluctuates (Dwyer and Forsyth 2).
The only way to benefit from the sector is through the maximization of the high season so that enough profits are gathered to push the players through the low season. Maximizing on the high season is also dependent on many other factors among them the preparedness of the players in the industry. Many limitations may come into play hindering the players in the industry from reaching their set targets. These limitations are most visible in countries or destinations that have low levels of development. Examples are countries that are still struggling to fully adopt and take advantage of information and communication advancements in enhancing tourism. While tourism presents many opportunities for economic development, the industry is still limited by many other factors of development for example lack of adequate machinery to enhance the industry. This is unfortunate especially so for countries that are still struggling with minor development issues (“Enhancing the Economic Benefits of Tourism for Local Communities and Poverty Alleviation” 4).
Tourism and political development
Tourism is undoubtedly a big industry with presence in almost every region of the world. Tourism is most significant to economies that are tourism dependent. As mentioned earlier in this paper, some economies depend on tourism because it is the highest fetcher of foreign exchange. Such economies guard tourism with all the enthusiasm knowing that any ongoing political events are likely to have a huge impact in the industry. In most cases political developments present an equal measure of consequences to the industry. When there are negative developments in a given destination for instance political conflicts, insecurity is most likely to occur. In such cases, other nations will often assess the developments and offer advice to their citizen concerning the decision to visit such countries. In most cases, the citizens are advised not to travel to such places in what is referred to as travel advisories (Tisdell 3).
Travel advisories result is strenuous periods in the industry especially in times when travel bans to certain destinations are implemented by countries that are considered the main sources of tourists. The affected states are thus forced to respond to the political situation with urgency so that they can salvage the tourism industry and the economy at large. Once peace is restored, countries are forced to communicate with other states to lift travel bans thence acting as a sigh of relief to the tourism industry. From this, it is evident that the tourism has a lot of influence on the political landscape of many countries. At the same time, the political landscape of countries impacts on the performance of countries. This means that tourism in more than just an affair of a single state but also a factor that determines international relations between different states across the world. Nations strive to establish relations between them and other states because these relations are important in promoting tourism between these states (Mak 142).
Tourism will continue to be a cross border affair except of cases of local tourism which happens within states. Even internal tourism itself needs a peaceful environment for it to thrive. Therefore, a good relation between states is sometimes a consequence of tourism. Nations are forced to coexist because of the mutuality in economic benefit arising from tourism. This is a most likely trend especially so for states that are in high need of foreign currency because of the deficit in income from international trade. Countries that are more reliant on tourism are forced to abide by the wishes of the countries that are not reliant on international trade. Tourism affects the position of such countries and their influence in international relations because they are dependent and thus have to be more receptive rather than being reactive in when relating to other states (Sharpley and Telfer 35).
Future prospects for the industry
Tourism is one of the oldest industries in the world which has been gaining prominence with time. Different aspects or forms of tourism continue to come up. A good example is the development of mega sporting and other events on the global scene. Such events encourage tourism in a big way. With the realization of many profits, governments and individuals have continues to invest in the industry through the creation of more attractive factors for tourism. With more investments and more income from the investments in the industry causes people to have more expectations of the industry. Governments are thus investing billions of dollars in their tourism sectors because of the fact that tourism presents more opportunities than just the direct outcome of from the industry. States are also making efforts to promote their profile so as they can be eligible for hosting major events that that promote tourism. By the mere mention of tourism, lots of opportunities are read by countries making tourism one of the most attractive areas of investment (Godfrey and Clarke 43).
Tourism is one of the most active sectors in the larger services sector as brought out in the discussion. Tourism and language cannot be easily set apart as the development of tourism entails the development of communication with the tourists. As tourism develops, multilingualism also develops to facilitate tourist operations. Tourism presents opportunities of development in all pillars of development in economies including economic, political, social and cultural. When assessing the impacts and factors that are facing tourism, many analysts seem to concentrate on the economic impacts and factors. However, from this paper, it has been evident that that tourism is more globalized and is thus impacts and is impacted upon by many factors.
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