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Title: Factors that contribute to the competitive advantage of the tourism industry in Durban : a stakeholders' perspective
Authors: Maharaj, Sacha 
Issue Date: 2018
Present tourism issues for the city of Durban include not being perceived as a value for money destination, which points towards a lack of awareness, knowledge and advertising of the city, as well as the tourism offering that should be made available to tourists. More worrisome is the decline in visitor numbers; along with insufficient tourism information available to tourists online. This study was therefore undertaken to determine which factors contribute to or detract from Durban’s destination competitiveness. To provide the answers, stakeholders in the tourism industry participated in this mixed methods study. The concept of competitiveness, within the tourism industry in Durban, emerged from the study through various themes.
Factors critical to tourism competitiveness were identified, along with Durban’s current tourism marketing mix factors, in order to identify the role of the marketing mix in improving Durban’s destination competitiveness. In addition, Durban’s tourism industry performance was assessed from a stakeholders’ perspective and marketing actions recommended that are best suited to improving the performance of these critical success factors.
The data analysis shows Durban to have competitive factors such as warm weather during the year and coastline but, some areas are found to require improvement, while other areas need serious attention. In addition, managers and employees generally shared the same opinions on most factors, with the findings emphasising Durban’s need to become a more competitive destination, be sustainable and contribute to the country’s economy.
Destination competitiveness is complex and multifaceted. Developing Durban’s destination competitiveness would recognise long-term sustainability and economic success, in addition to improvements to the city as a destination. This study has endeavoured to assist tourism stakeholders in Durban, by establishing the city’s competitiveness factors, from a stakeholder perspective. This study, therefore, not only strives to draw attention to the research problem but also paves the way to improve Durban’s destination.
Submitted in fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Management Sciences Specialising in Hospitality and Tourism, Durban University of Technology, Durban, South Africa, 2018.
Appears in Collections:Theses and dissertations (Management Sciences)

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