Strategies to Manage Visitors Flows in Urban Destinations
Published on: 05.07.2019
Overtourism was included in the Oxford English Dictionary in 2018, yet the issue of mass tourism has been debated for many years. Specific destinations that fire the imagination of travelers from all over the world are getting overcrowded, thus the need for responsible and traveling and sustainable tourism development is growing.
The impacts of overtourism vary from environmental to social and cultural.
Environmental impacts include:
Water consumption and overuse
Greenhouse gas emissions
Marine litter and soil pollution
Erosion and habitat loss
Social and cultural impacts:
Alienated local residents
Failure to respect local traditions and customs
Loss of authenticity
High but short-term rents
Reading suggestion: Have You Considered Sustainability Entrepreneurship in Tourism?
Classic travel destinations such as Venice, Paris, Amsterdam, or even places made famous through cinema like Dubrovnik, (Game of Thrones) are taking measures to deal with the huge crowds of visitors.
While these economies are getting more than the real demand, there are countless destinations across the world in medium and low-income countries that struggle to develop this sector and boost its economic effect on the local economy and especially on employment.
Recently, the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) unveiled a list of seven strategies to manage visitors flow in urban destinations. Numerous researches have confirmed that local power can provide the best strategies for reducing the negative impacts of crowds in popular destinations. At the same time, these strategies can be used in areas that are expected to turn into travel hubs in the near future.
Strategy 1: Promote the dispersal of visitors within the city and beyond
Strategy 2: Promote time-based dispersal of visitors
Strategy 3: Stimulate new itineraries and attractions
Strategy 4: Review and adapt regulation
Strategy 5: Enhance visitors’ segmentation
Strategy 6: Ensure local communities benefit from tourism
Strategy 7: Create city experiences for both residents and visitors
Strategy 8: Improve city infrastructure and facilities
Strategy 9: Communicate with and engage local stakeholders
Strategy 10: Communicate with and engage visitors
Strategy 11: Set monitoring and response measures
All these look like the responsibilities of local governments, but solutions can be provided by everyone. If you already have an idea or project that promotes responsible travel, you are welcomed to participate in the Sustainable Tourism Competition.
If you have noticed an issue related to tourism in your community, you can take out free online training and learn how to develop a concept from an entrepreneurial idea to a sustainable solution.