Strategies to improve the quality and competitiveness of coastal tourism areasApplying tourism standards

  1. Moisés R. Simancas Cruz 1
  2. Juan Israel García Cruz 1
  3. Carlos Alberto Greifemberg 1
  4. María Pilar Peñarrubia Zaragoza 2
  1. 1 Universidad de La Laguna
    info

    Universidad de La Laguna

    San Cristobal de La Laguna, España

    GRID grid.10041.34

  2. 2 Universitat de València
    info

    Universitat de València

    Valencia, España

    GRID grid.5338.d

Revue:
Journal of Tourism Analysis = Revista de Análisis Turístico

ISSN: 1885-2564

Année de publication: 2018

Volumen: 25

Número: 1

Pages: 68-90

Type: Article

Exporter: RIS

Indicateurs

CIRC

  • Ciencias Sociales: C

Résumé

Purpose – The quality of tourist accommodation establishments is a recurring theme in public strategies for planning and managing tourist destinations. The applying standards as a way to achieve quality. This strategy consists of legally regulating a series of minimum physical standards by using measureable parameters, as well as the desired characteristics or levels of amenities, which vary according to the type of provision required. The purpose of this study is to analyze the strengths and weaknesses of applying strategies that regulate standards for accommodations in coastal tourism areas in the Canary Islands (Spain). Design/methodology/approach – The authors used an explanatory case study methodology. An “intercase” comparison has been chosen, because the object of analysis (public policy applying tourism standards) has changed over time; furthermore, a content analysis approach was selected so that the subject of this research is the process of implementing this kind tourism policy. The result is a systematization of the process in stages. Findings – Quantifiable criteria that exclusively consider the physical or operational parameters of a tourist establishment are no longer sufficient to provide quality service that meets the needs and expectations of customers. It is not enough to set standards for surface area parameters or essential amenities when organizing new tourist developments, but rather it is the qualitative aspect that must be addressed. At the same time, quality tourist accommodation establishment is not obtained merely by reducing density, which constitutes the significant standard. Research limitations/implications – This paper evidence is presented that may influence the quality of accommodation perceived by the client, which increases their level of satisfaction and, in turn, the degree of trust and, therefore, fidelity, understood as the future decision to repeat or not the tourist experience. There are also issues related to the approach that the quality of accommodation establishments has a direct effect on the visitor’s perception of the destination, which cannot be merely physical, mensurable in square metres. Practical implications – The relationship between urban standards and quality is no longer linear. This determines that the regulated tourist accommodations (defined by sectoral regulations) it is common to set a required plot size in m2 based on the number of bed places offered by the establishment is no longer valid. Today, tourists rate accommodation establishments by the prestige of their brand or the diversity of services and experiences (entertainment, sensations, emotions, etc.) they provide. These experiences play such an important role in producing customer satisfaction and loyalty to a hotel that guests are willing to pay more for their stay, with the understanding that they will be able to experience certain emotions. It has been evidenced that the main reason for setting physical quality parameters that can be measured by a rating system for accommodation establishments, to provide a basic reference for customers, is no longer necessary, given the amount of easily accessible real-time information freely available through multiple independent channels based on the 2.0 paradigm, information technologies and communication, as well as applications and virtual platforms. Social implications – Applying this public strategy of classifying or rating tourist accommodations on a territorial scale has some strengths and weaknesses. However, it is not easy to find a comprehensive evaluation of the impact of such strategies because, among other issues, the public administration seems disinterested in measuring the consequences of their decisions, instead focussing on whether the formal legal requirements are being complied with. Moreover, whenever such assessments have been carried out, the discussion has been limited to the effectiveness of the implementation. This is why, beyond such purely mechanical responses, there are currently no studies or technical reports that specifically examine the positive or negative effects of such approaches. Evidently, these circumstances make any work analyzing this material relevant and timely. Likewise, the main reason for setting physical quality parameters that can be measured by a rating system for accommodation establishments, to provide a basic reference for customers, is no longer necessary, given the amount of easily accessible, real-time information freely available through multiple independent channels based on the 2.0 paradigm, information technologies and communication, as well as applications and virtual platforms. Originality/value – The paper determines that the impact of the strategies of set a required plot size in square metres based on the number of bed places offered by the establishment is limited. Applying this public strategy of classifying or rating tourist accommodations on a territorial scale has some strengths and weaknesses. However, it is not easy to find a comprehensive evaluation of the impact of such strategies because, among other issues, the public administration seems disinterested in measuring the consequences of their decisions, instead focussing on whether the formal legal requirements are being complied with. Moreover, whenever such assessments have been carried out, the discussion has been limited to the effectiveness of the implementation. This is why, beyond such purely mechanical responses, there are currently no studies or technical reports that specifically examine the positive or negative effects of such approaches. Evidently, these circumstances make any work analyzing this material relevant and timely