Competitiveness of Istanbul as A Tourism Destination for Luxury Market
In today’s world, where tough competition is prevalent, tourism destination competitiveness bears enormous significance to increase market share. For this reason, managers and entrepreneurs in the tourism sector need to carry out practices such as reinforcing fields that would create an advantage over the competition, analyzing the opportunities in this sector and strengthening the weak links. In this study, the concept of luxury, which has been referred to in various tourism fairs held throughout 2016, has been used as an interrelated concept with destination competitiveness. The study weaves together the conception of luxury maintained by Langer and Heil (2013), with the idea of destination competitiveness (and the determining factors that it embodies) developed by Dwyer & Kim (2003), which was used for the case of Slovenia by Gomezelj & Mihalic (2008). Through this combination, the study has generated a questionnaire for the evaluation of Istanbul as a luxury tourism destination. The questionnaire has been implemented to agency managers, specializing in luxury brand management, who were invited to Istanbul from four corners of the world by the “Lux in Turkey” Club. This research carried out at a private meeting, included special guests who take active part in the sector, was target-oriented, and was held with special permission and with invitations. The results indicate that although Istanbul rates high in terms of endowed resources, created resources and demand, its competitiveness stands low in terms of situational conditions, supporting factors and tourism destination management. The results also help identify weak links such as security issues, political structure, and destination management, and help encourage the sector to analyze these issues that would eventually contribute to the solution of problems.
Key terms: luxury management, tourism destination management, Istanbul
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