Two Images of Tourism Development in Caribbean: Tour Operators and Authorities Approach
Since decades tourist regions – respectively to possess sources and own needs – compete against each other on various levels. The aim of this rivalry is to gain more tourists and thus improve own prosperity and position on the tourism services market. Here the closer look to Caribbean region is taken. The region comprises of more than 700 islands and plays an important role for all-inclusive holiday tourism and cruising. In both cases, factors determining the development of tourism include the 3S (Sun, Sand, Sea) holiday and the high-level of service (high-class resorts / all-inclusive hotels). This model is repeated on tropical islands all around the world. However, if regions want to keep healthy competition some differences are needed. The variance of tourism product can be implemented by introducing a well-known ACE (Adventure, Cultural, and Ecotourism) tourism. In Caribbean two images of tourism development exists: tour operators and authorities approach. The tour-operators by using social engineering are able to create the image of a tourist destination what they covet (to gain own economic purposes). They do not care much what is needed for sustainable tourism and social development. A completely different approach is shown by authorities. They try to follow current trends and introduce new kinds of tourism, like e.g. culinary or slow tourism. By diversification of tourism product, they want to provide well-being to all stakeholders. To verify above thesis, the vacation offer provided by the main tour-operators on selected Caribbean islands were analyzed. Thus, in this paper we compare two ideas of tourism development: tour operators' and authorities vision.
Authorities, Caribbean, Development, Tourism image, Tour operators.