Even though tourism is probably the world's largest industry, only 5% of total market research turnover is in travel and tourism, indicating the relative underuse of research in the industry. The intangible nature of tourism and the lack of a truly free market place certain limits on market research's relevance, but the article suggests that the major barriers to its effective use are managerial attitudes and a lack of appreciation of how effective research can lead to increased profitability. In addition, the very areas where research would be most beneficial may well be those where it is most unlikely to be used: in understanding consumer motivations and in planning for the future. © 1991.
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