Welcome to the Great Barrier Reef: the importance of weather in reef tourism

Coghlan, Alexandra, and Prideaux, Bruce (2007) Welcome to the Great Barrier Reef: the importance of weather in reef tourism. In: Symposium 07 Cross Collaboration in Hospitality & Related Services, pp. 21-35. From: Cross Collaboration in Hospitality & Related Services: synergies & future possibilities, 26 October 2007, Cairns, Queensland, Australia.

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Abstract

As one of Australia's iconic tourism attractions and one of the seven wonders of the world, the Great Barrier Reef (GBR) is an important economic, social and natural resource to Queensland's Tropical North. In this study we analyse how the impact of weather conditions have affected the reef experiences of over 1000 tourists to the Cairns/Port Douglas region. The results suggest that factors associated with poor weather have a more pronounced effect on experiences than good weather, and reinforce the likelihood that seasickness, cold and wet conditions, reduced water visibility, and difficult snorkelling/diving conditions wi1l reduce overall1evels of satisfaction. Poor weather was found to have a direct effect on satisfaction scores, the likelihood that reef and tour expectations were not realised, and perceived value for money. These are important considerations for the reef-centred tourism industry that is currently facing environmental pressure and the future threat of loss of biodiversity and coral bleaching through climate change-induced factors. Surprisingly, poor weather did not influence respondents' decision to recommend a trip to the GBR to others, indicating that there are more elements involved in the reef trip that need to be explored in future studies.

Item ID: 3129
Item Type: Conference Item (Refereed Research Paper - E1)
Keywords: weather; Great Barrier Reef (GBR); satisfaction; World Heritage area; climate change; coral bleaching
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ISBN: 978-0-86443-791-4
Date Deposited: 22 Oct 2009 22:50
FoR Codes: 15 COMMERCE, MANAGEMENT, TOURISM AND SERVICES > 1506 Tourism > 150603 Tourism Management @ 100%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9613 Remnant Vegetation and Protected Conservation Areas > 961303 Protected Conservation Areas in Marine Environments @ 51%
97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970116 Expanding Knowledge through Studies of Human Society @ 49%
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