New Zealand’s national tourism strategy needs to focus more on the role of local communities in engaging and interacting with tourists, says AUT University’s tourism and sustainability professor Simon Milne.
Building stronger links between local economies and tourists will be the topic of AUT Professor Milne’s speech at the 13th Asia-Pacific CHRIE (Council on Hotel, Restaurant, and Institutional Education) conference this month.
Professor Milne says, “The Tourism 2025 strategy has largely ignored the role that local communities play in creating sustainable and high yield tourism for New Zealand.”
“Our target market is the free, independent and interactive traveller who prefers to rent a car or bike instead of sitting on a tour bus, is keen to explore ‘off the beaten track’, and is interested in engaging with local people and businesses. If we are really going to increase visitor yield we need to give our communities the chance to be more interactive, enabling them to share their own stories and experiences, and helping locals to create a ‘sense of place’ for the visitor.”
Professor Milne will also address the challenge of reducing recent tensions between international travellers and locals over the use of shared resources such as roads and public facilities.
More than 300 delegates from 25 countries are expected for the conference which AUT University will host at the ANZ Viaduct Events Centre from 10 to 13 June 2015.
The biggest of its kind in the Asia Pacific region, the conference is a valuable opportunity for tourism and hospitality academics to share and exchange ideas, products and services that advance the hospitality, culinary arts and hotel industry.
This year’s conference theme ‘Hospitality and tourism in a greening world: challenges and opportunities’ will confront issues of sustainability facing hospitality and tourism trades.
A youth programme will run simultaneously, bringing together undergraduate students of different cultural backgrounds to learn new ideas, business tactics and best practices from local senior executives, leading scholars and business leaders within the hospitality and tourism field.
For more information please visit www.apacchrie2015.com.