Objectives – The impact of tourism has received much consideration by researchers attempting to investigate the attitudes of the host population toward tourism development. Research has focussed on rural, coastal and urban areas. However, very little research has been carried out in tourism island destinations. Furthermore, research aimed at analysing the perceptions and attitude of residents toward cruise tourism development is still very poor. Moving on from a literature review on community-based tourism, the aim of this study is to contribute towards filling this gap by examining residents’ attitudes toward cruise tourism in Messina, a port of call on the island of Sicily (Italy). Since current statistics in the field of community-based tourism report that residents’ attitudes are significantly influenced by several socio-economic and demographic characteristics, this study also examined whether these differences exist, within the topics considered in the present paper. Methods – This study uses a sample size of 1,500 residents. Data were collected via a stratified random sample with questionnaires administered face-to-face to residents living at different distances from the port and in different areas of the city. Results – Findings show that residents are expressing an overall positive attitude toward the cruise tourism development. Further, they highlight that significant differences based on socio-economic and demographic characteristics (age, gender, reliance on cruise-related employment , level of education, geographical proximity to tourist areas and port, length of residency and frequency of interaction with tourists) exist in residents’ perceptions and attitudes toward cruise tourism development. Conclusions – Perceptions of the local community and its attitude towards the impact of any proposed tourism development model should be taken into account when planning the future of a cruise tourism destination. Local government and policy makers should run internal marketing and communication activities aimed at increasing the favourableness of residents’ attitudes toward tourism, delivering tailored messages which demonstrate the positive balance between the positive and negative impacts of tourism.
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|Titolo:||Resident’s perceptions and attitudes toward the cruise tourism development: insights from an Italian tourism destination|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2012|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||4.1 Contributo in Atti di convegno|