Antalya Residents? Attitudes Regarding the Impacts of All-Inclusive Resorts in the Turkish Coastal Destination

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2014-07-11

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All-inclusive resorts (hereafter abbreviated AIR) have a long history of contributing to tourism revenue leakage from host economies. Antalya, with its high percentage of AIRs, is a prime tourist destination in Turkey that likely contributes to such leakage. In an effort to better understand AIR, the purpose of this study was to examine how residents perceive the impacts of AIR in Antalya, Turkey. In so doing, a further focus of the work was looking at the interrelationships between residents? attitudes about their attachment to the community, existing tourism and tourism development, future tourism development as well as potential tourism development options and attitudes about AIR impacts.

A survey was conducted in four key districts in Antalya (based on the concentration of AIRs in the areas): the Antalya city center, Kemer, Serik and Manavgat, yielding a robust sample (n = 660). A questionnaire was designed to examine residents? perceptions of AIR impacts on local communities, perceptions of existing tourism and tourism development, attitudes about future tourism development, attitudes about forms of potential tourism development, community attachment, and a host of demographic variables.

This study adopted social exchange theory and community attachment as conceptual frameworks to explain residents? perceptions and attitudes toward AIR, existing tourism development, future tourism development and potential tourism development options. The study?s findings demonstrated that highly attached residents tend to view tourism development more favorably than less community-attached residents and support for future tourism development as well as potential tourism development options. Additionally, highly attached residents tended to perceive negative impacts of AIR. Furthermore, residents who perceived positive impacts of tourism were supportive of future tourism development as well as potential tourism development options.

Findings indicated that each of four AIR factors (AIR negative impacts, AIR positive impacts, AIR impacts on population, AIR impacts on quality) and degree of community attachment had direct significant influence on residents? perceptions of existing tourism and tourism development, attitudes about future tourism development, and attitudes about forms of potential tourism development. Findings provide empirical support for social exchange theory and community attachment. Implications are described and directions for future research are discussed.

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