Sport, tourism and mega-event impacts on host cities: A case study of the 2010 FIFA World Cup in Port Elizabeth
Tourism has been identified as a key source of economic growth and diversification for countries. In fact the rapid growth of the industry has, in part been fuelled by the rapid growth in sectors such as sport tourism, and linked specifically to major and mega-event hosting. Successfully hosting mega-events brings economic benefits, increased city visibility, increased tourism revenue and increased pride in the city by the host communities, among other benefits. Subsequently, world tourism patterns have transformed with the hosting of such events putting the spotlight on new tourism destinations, and drawing attention to those that are neglected, particularly developing nations. This study assessed the legacy impacts of mega-events and sport tourism in general on host cities using the 2010 FIFA World Cup in Port Elizabeth, South Africa as a case study. A spatially based systematic sampling method was used to gather 2225 questionnaires in selected areas during the event in Port Elizabeth. The data were captured and analysed using the Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) software. Key findings reveal that the event had positive impacts on the destination in the long-term as many visitors planned to visit the country/city in future and rated key tourism facilities as being of a good standard. The study recommends the maximisation of the marketing momentum garnered through the hosting of the event in order to inform and remind relevant stakeholders of the potential of the region, before focus shifts to alternative destinations.
Keywords: Tourism, sport tourism, mega-events, impacts, FIFA World Cup.
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