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The impact of mega-events on tourist arrivals

Johan Fourie () and Maria Santana-Gallego
Authors registered in the RePEc Author Service: Maria Santana Gallego ()

No 171, Working Papers from Economic Research Southern Africa

Abstract: While a mega-event is scheduled at least once every year somewhere in the world, these events are rare occurrences for the host cities and countries. The benefits of such events seem lucrative; the very fact that many countries bid to host these events suggests that the benefits - be they tangible or intangible - more often than not outweigh the costs. Using a standard gravity model of bilateral tourism flows between 200 countries from 1995 to 2006, this paper measures a very direct benefit of such mega-events: the increase in tourist arrivals to the host country. Although ex ante expectations are that tourism numbers would increase significantly during such an event, a growing literature points to the careful appraisal of possible tourist displacement, i.e. 'regular' tourists that change their behaviour when a mega-event is held, either shifting their trip to a different time or different location. This may result in reduced tourism gain, or even loss. In general, results suggest that mega-events promote tourism but the gain is dependent on the type of mega-event, the participating countries, the host country’s level of development, and whether the event is held during the peak- or off-season.

Keywords: Mega-events; panel data; development; international tourism (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: L83 F19 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 23 pages
Date: 2010
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-mig, nep-spo and nep-tur
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Citations: View citations in EconPapers (11) Track citations by RSS feed

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