Mass Tourism

Step 1: Read the key terms list below. Make sure that you understand and could give a definition to somebody else.

Step 2: Read the information in Section 1. Answer the exam questions here. 

Mass tourism occurs when a large number of tourists visit one destination or area. Mass tourism has increased due to improvements in technology and transport meaning that a great number of people can reach a destination easily and in a relatively short time.

A mass tourism destination usually has one particular attraction or pull factor such as beaches, mountain ranges or purpose-built attractions such as Theme Parks.

Many countries wish to take advantage of mass tourism as it brings with it a number of advantages and can be a major source of income. You can read more about the economic benefits of tourism here

Benidorm, Spain is an example of a mass tourist resort

Benidorm, Spain is an example of a mass tourist resort

Mass Tourism brings many advantages and disadvantages.

Advantages

  1. Employment in tourist attractions and services.
  2. New infrastructure such as roads and utilities. Airports, power supplies, and telecommunication improvements all benefit the local population as well as tourists.
  3. Construction jobs for local people to build attractions and services for tourists.
  4. New leisure facilities and attractions open which can be used by local people too.

Disadvantages

  1. Tourism is often seasonal and so there is a Peak season and off season. Local people can become unemployed for several months of the year.
  2. Quite often, jobs in the tourism industries are poorly paid.
  3. Money from tourism often goes to large multi-national companies and so does not benefit the local and national economy.
  4. New building developments use up land which could be otherwise used for other projects which may benefit communities more.
  5. Local people may not be able to visit the service, facilities and attractions aimed at tourists. For example, people living in Orlando may not be able to afford to visit DisneyWorld very frequently.
  6. Mass tourism can bring about social problems such as high crime rates and increases in anti-social behaviour. Pickpocketing for example is especially frequent in mass tourism areas.