The Impacts of Terrorism and the Impacts of Crime on Affected Tourist Destinations
Although both terrorism and crime have an effect on tourist destinations, nevertheless it is important to appreciate the fact that their levels of impact usually differ. In the case of terrorism, disasters usually results in difficult, and often tragic situations not just to the area that ahs been afflicted by it, but also to the residents of the area. With regard to a tourist destination, the period during a terrorist threat could symbolize a crisis in the tourist industry, and this may very well pause a threat to the usual conduction and operations of businesses that are related to the tourism industry. In addition, there is also the possibility that the overall reputation that a given tourist destination has thus far attained, with respect to its attractiveness, safety, as well as comfort, could end up affecting in a negative way the perception held by visitors to such a destination.
Consequently, this may result in a drastic reduction in terms of local travel and by extension a reduction in the revenues that the tourism sector provides to the economy.
Furthermore, the operations of businesses that are related to the tourism sector may ends up being disrupted as a result of a reduction in the number of the tourists that are arriving at the affected destination, in addition to the expenditures that the local travel industry, along with the tourism sector incur, in trying to counter the terrorism attacks. The motivation that are harboured by terrorists, their strategies, tactics, targeting and logistics, have in recent years witnessed a rapid rate of evolvement, and this has in effect negatively impacted on the tourism sector.
There is a need to appreciate the fact that the cost of terrorism to the tourist destinations is relatively higher, in comparison to the crime-related costs. A case in point that is worth of consideration here is the impact of the attacks of September 11 on the tourism industry. According to Telfer and Sharpley, the overall impact of the 9/11 attacks, to the tourism industry, from an economic perspective, may at bets be described as realistically immeasurable. Nonetheless, according to statistics that have been released by the council on tourism and world council, it has been estimates that there was a reduction in terms of tourism and demand and travel on a global scale at a rate of 10 percent.
Additionally, approximately 8.8 million people lost their jobs worldwide, and the industries that were most affected in this case includes hotels, airlines, car rental, tour companies, as well as credit card companies. Consequently, there was a 1.7 percent reduction in terms of the overall gross domestic product (GDP) of the global economy. In addition to the stillness that characterized the global economy at the time, the 9/11 attacks led to a reduction of international arrivals on a global scale of 4 million visitors, when compared to the year 2000. Such statistics are a manifestation of the introduction of fear, and also the unwillingness of would-be tourists to fly, especially with regard to transatlantic flights. Accordingly, the indications here is that the impact that the 9/11 attacks had were not just felt by the tourism industry in the United States, but on a global scale as well.
It is worth of note that a reduction in terms of the number of tourists visiting a given tourist destination as a result of security and safety incidents is not just limited to that local environment that such an incident takes place in. In this case, the incident usually has a tendency of spreading fast to occupy other adjoining regions, and these could be outside or inside the country that has been affected by the incident. This is more of a spillover effect, usually brought about by a number of factors. To start with, is at all the tourists are not conversant with the affected area’s geography, and then the spillover effect is more likely to take place.
In contrast, we could also have coverage by the media that is biased in nature, in effect failing to give ample details regarding the image of the area that have been affected. Accordingly, this may act to distort the impact of the incident. With regard to the impact of security incidents to tourist destinations, such extreme incidents of security like war or terrorism have been found to result in no major variation in terms of the arrivals of tourists, on the basis of those acts that have been committed off or on a tourism enterprises’ premises. This is an issue of location. On the other hand, in the event that the incidents that have taken place are less severe in nature (for example, crimes), if at all the crime acts have taken place within the premises that houses business that are affiliated to tourism, the result is that these will be a more significant impact in terms of the number of tourists visiting such affected premises, when compared with crimes that have taken place away from the tourism premises.
Tourism crimes have been seen to more often take place those areas that are characterized by elevated levels of traditional forms of crimes, in terms of their geographical location. The locations fro tourist destinations have been regarded as more of crime hotspots, in the sense that they offer an environment that is somewhat more conducive to the conduction of crime. This is as a result of the hedonistic orientation of such hotspots, in addition to the inherent activities taking place there.