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The Socioeconomic Impacts of Cruise Tourism: A Case Study of Croatian Destinations

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The aim of this research was to estimate the economic, promotional, and sociocultural impact of cruise tourism to Croatian destinations. Due to the anticipated growth of cruise tourism worldwide and, especially, in the Mediterranean, measuring its impacts is becoming an increasingly important issue in terms of appropriate planning of cruising tourism on the local level. The study reported here included the survey of cruise ship passengers and crew members in order to estimate their on-land expenditure, survey of hotel guests aimed to estimate the impact of cruise experience on repeat, land-based, visits, and survey of local residents aimed to estimate the sociocultural impact of cruise ship tourism. The study found that, in terms of the passenger- and crew-related expenditure, cruise passengers were relatively good spenders. They spent between 34 and 82 Euros, depending on the port of call. In terms of the value of cruising upon the return visit to a destination, the survey revealed that only between 1.5% and 3% of cruise passengers who visited Croatian destinations during 2000–2006 returned in 2006 as land-based visitors. In destinations with frequent cruise ship calls the negative impact on destination attractiveness is already present. Land-based tourists disliked seeing cruisers/cruise passengers in destination (23%), and were complaining of the noise generated by the cruise ships. Finally, residents also reported the adverse impact of cruisers and their passengers relating mostly to the excessive crowdedness created in the short time. However, they still supported cruise tourism, albeit advocating an urgent need to improve the traffic and visitor flow management. With an understanding of the economic value of the cruise industry and the range of the impact that it creates on land-based tourists and residents' community, the results are very important for drafting the strategic direction for cruise tourism development already under way in Croatia.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: June 1, 2008

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  • Tourism in Marine Environments is an interdisciplinary journal dealing with a variety of management issues in marine settings. It is a scientific journal that draws upon the expertise of academics and practitioners from various disciplines related to the marine environment, including tourism, marine science, geography, social sciences, psychology, environmental studies, economics, marketing, and many more.
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