Socio-Economic Impacts of the Recession

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Chapter 1

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Changes in the economy affect the decisions that people make in their business as well as leisure activities. For example, during recessions, people are forced to spend very little and cut on their travelling costs. The recent global recession that took place in 2008 represents one of the most important periods for understanding the decisions people make concerning their travel or tour destinations. During the recession, there were very few British citizens going overseas for holidays. Statistics from the Office for national Statistics indicate that a majority of UK citizens opted to spend their holidays within the country. This led to an upsurge of domestic tourism in the country as more people visited tourist destinations within their own localities. The decision to stay at home for holidays was necessary due to the tough economic conditions that prevailed during the recession.

However, while domestic tourism was on the rise, a new form of domestic tourism emerged. This is staycation. Staycation is an emerging phenomenon in the tourism industry that has helped shape the recent trends in the tourism sector in the UK. A staycation can be understood as an alternative form of vacation where; instead of going abroad or in another county to take a holiday, one opts to explore his home and the local surroundings and enjoying what it has to offer. The concept of staycation first emerged in 2003 when Terry Massey used the word in the Myrtle Beach Sun-News to describe the tome he spent in Myrtle Beach for nine days with his wife enjoying the environment of his local home. The term has since then been used widely in many tourism articles, but only gained popularity after the 2008 recession. A staycation allows one to choose tourist destinations that are within his environment, thus boosting the tourism sector within his homeland. The term staycation is a relatively new idea with very little research done on the topic.

Consequently, many big cities have adopted the concept of staycation by encouraging their locals to take advantage of the tourism features in their localities as opposed to taking trips abroad. Different municipalities across the country have created various programs and promotions aimed at attracting local consumers. These programs include partnerships with key players in the hospitality sector to create culinary programs that have seen residents accessing meals at lower prices. Also, key players in the tourism industry such as tour agencies are also developing packages that promote domestic tourism, thus utilizing the concept of staycation to boost the local tourism industry.

Tourism is one of the greatest sectors of the global economy and forms the backbone of the economies of most countries across the world. This means implies that the tourism sector employs a majority of people in the world and plays a major role in shaping economic development in several countries globally. Hospitality or Tourism establishments can be at the forefront of diversity management due to the great focus of on the importance of the tourism sector. Tourists are usually from different places, races and ages. Having a diversified workforce in tourism establishment will be a great step in attracting a wide range of tourists thus leading to profitability.

Accessibility also ensures that the major tourist attraction sites are accessible to all persons. The buildings have to be constructed in such a way that they can be accessed by the disabled. In Britain major tourist attractions are accessible since most of the sites are around the city and have largely been connected via transport networks including road and water transport systems (Mills, and Rob 2005).

With regard to infrastructure, The United Kingdom is regarded as one of the best architectural sites for both buildings and transport networks such as roads, bridges, flyovers and tunnels. Transport stations in Britain comply with both local and international policies and requirements. The facilities are modern and meet contemporary safety needs. Having an elaborate transport system such as the one in Britain has a lot of benefits for the state and its citizens. The first benefit is that it opens up the city-state to the world where people from different regions can visit Britain to do business and generate income to the government (Buhalis, 2003). The wide ranges of options for transport are also beneficial to Britain because they enable both locals and visitors to access the different places in the city. It gives the travelers a flexible mode of transport for easily accessing the city. The transport system in Britain is also a major boost to the tourism sector in the city. It enables tourists to access the various attraction sites (Buhalis, 2003).

Sustainable development of tourism requires the participation and contribution of all major stakeholders to ensure there is consensus. Besides, this is a long term and a continuous process that involves constantly monitoring and instituting corrective measures to ensure the main objective is attained. One of the sectors in the tourism industry that has been affected the most by the concept of sustainable development is the International airports sector. International airports are the various locations and sites that have been designated as tourist attraction centers. These include historic sites, beautiful sceneries, national parks, and museums amongst other relevant places (Buhalis, 2003).

Furthermore, sustainable tourism has to focus on the impact of the design and development of tourist destination facilities on the local communities. For instance, new facilities need not forcibly displace or replace local communities. In order to foster sustainable tourism, destination facilities are seeking better ways in which these sites can coexist with the local communities. If there is need for resettlement of any group of people, there has to be consensus between major stakeholders. The problem of resettlement of communities has been a major problem in some of the developing countries thereby challenging the sustainability of tourism (WTO, 2001). However, these emerging approaches that seek to find a solution for a mutual coexistence between the people and animals or other attractions provide hope of a sustainable tourism industry.

This research aims to provide an exploration into the decisions made by young people of UK in the choice of their destination of visit. This paper will look at the factors that influence their decision. How the recession of 2008 in the UK has played a vital role in the increase number people take staycation. The following questions will be addressed to help with understanding of the research:

- socio-economic impacts of the recession;

- how the Lifestyle segmentation influence their decision;

- has staycation empowered international travel for a holiday destination.

Do you find going abroad or staying in the UK to be of more convenience to you in terms of a holiday considering your socio-economic circumstances?

By understanding the lifestyles of the staycation market, marketers can more effectively and efficiently use their resources to target these specific travelers. It is not enough to know just the demographic and product usage of this segment; the lifestyle component enhances the profile image of the market segment and helps marketers communicate better with the audience (Plummer, 1974). Lifestyle segmentation creates an identity for a market and gathers the common characteristics that create this segment making it easier for marketers to create packages and use the most appropriate ads to attract them (Plummer, 1974; Lin, 2003). The results of this study will improve marketing strategies used towards staycation travelers and could help lodging providers create packages that will attract consumers. Suggestions on the most effective marketing strategies and creation of packages could benefit lodging managers and marketers create another source of revenue from a niche target market. Researchers can also benefit from this study because there is no research done on staycation travelers or the marketing strategies used to target them.

Chapter 2

Literature Rview

This chapter presents a review of existing literature comprising of previously published materials and research studies conducted in relation to the topic of procurement performance. As such, this chapter contains a theoretical review or the conceptual framework for conducting the study. It also explores some of the main themes and subtopic that other researchers have been interested in when studying or writing about procurement performance. All these concepts and key terms will be related to the objectives of this study. Furthermore, this section of the proposal will also provide a critique of the existing literature as well as identifying some of the gaps existing in the literature for purpose of guiding future research in this area.

The literature is divided into two main sections: staycations and lifestyle segmentation. The term staycation is a relatively new idea with very little research done on the topic. This section is divided into five subsections; definition and characteristics of staycation, purpose of taking a staycation, economic impact of staycations, staycation market, and promoting staycations. The next section, segmentation, is divided into six subsections; definition of segmentation, purpose and benefits of segmentation, themes related to segmentation, segmentation bases, definition, benefits, and shortcomings of lifestyle segmentation, and lifestyle segmentation research in the hospitality and tourism industry.

Definition and Characteristics of Staycation

Summer vacations have been the norm in the UK since the 1900s having started out with auto-camping. This soon turned into more extravagant trips where people would fly to their destinations instead of drive (Fox, 2009). From the beginning of 2008, many British people could not afford a typical vacation due to a receding economy, increasing gas prices, and unaffordable air travel. Consequently, people began taking what is called a staycation (Vacations are on the rise, 2011). As a result, more cities began targeting local consumers by advertising and promoting what they have to offer and making this a more appealing option for travel.

In order to fully comprehend the meaning of the term staycation a clear definition is required. According to Wixon (2009) staycation refers to a vacation in which the vacationer stays at home, or near home, while creating the environment of a traditional vacation (p. 2). Another scholar, Vackova (2009), provides an almost similar definition by stating that a staycation is where travelers stay at home rather than travel to another destination and use that time to explore the local environment; such as staying in a city hotel or exploring the countryside near their home.

Other scholars and authors have set parameters regarding the distance of travel when it comes to determining the scope of staycation, whereas others leave the distance of travel very vague or up to interpretation. For instance, Yesawich (2010) reported findings from a research that was conducted by the partnership/Harrison Group to determine if people were actually taking staycations. The research study established one in four U.S. leisure travelers with an annual household income of more than $50,000 took at least one overnight leisure trip/vacation within a 50-mile drive radius of their home during the previous 12 months as an alternative to vacationing in a farther destination...

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