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Title: Economic implications of universal accessibility in promoting sustainable tourism in uMhlabuyalingana, KwaZulu-Natal
Authors: Spencer, John Peter 
Mnqayi, SN 
Keywords: Challenges and opportunities;Service provision;Sustainable tourism;Universal accessibility;Universal design
Issue Date: 2017
Publisher: The Business and Management Review
Abstract: The impacts of sustainable tourism must be measurable to ensure sustainable economic growth. In this article universal accessibility (UA) has been perceived as one of the strategies that could be implemented to maximise the positive impacts of sustainable tourism, and ensure economic growth. The tourists’ requirements towards UA in the tourism industry appear disregarded by the academics, especially within South Africa. Moreover, the affected tourists are often seen as part of a challenge instead of being acknowledged as a solution towards enhancing sustainable tourism practices, and further towards growing the economy of the country. This study considered UA as a supporting strategy for sustainable tourism in the uMhlabuyalingana study area, pursuing an understanding of the industry challenges versus opportunities. It also explores platforms that could enhance efficient practices of UA in tourism in South Africa in order to encourage a sustainable tourism service provision by different sectors of the tourism industry. The key aim of the study was to establish whether owners of accommodation, transport service providers, and tourism officials understand the concept of universal accessibility in tourism towards economic participation and growth. This study employed a questionnaire as the main tool for data collection, targeting tourism sites at Sodwana Bay and Kosi Bay in KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa as the two critical tourism nodes. The findings confirmed the study objectives since a high percentage of the respondents selected irrelevant meanings of UA, which implied that tourism service providers in the study area do not theoretically and practically understand the concept of universal accessibility in tourism, and do not understand how UA contributes to the local economy.
ISSN: 2047-2854
Appears in Collections:BUS - Conference Proceedings

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