Practices and Challenges of Domestic Tourism Development in Ethiopian Tourism and Hospitality Industry
Keywords:Domestic Tourism, Practices, Challenges and Ethiopia
The main purpose of this study was identifying and explaining current practices and challenges of domestic tourism development in Ethiopia. To achieve this objective, qualitative approach with a descriptive design and expert purposive sampling techniques were employed for focus group discussion and interview data gathering instruments. The qualitative data was collected from twenty private and governmental tourism experts and twenty eight domestic tourists in the form of interview and six focus group discussions with nine discussants each. The interpretation of qualitative data was a content descriptive approach that utilizes code of summary data and unattributed quotes to illustrate dominant issues in respondents’ own words. The result confirmed that practices of domestic tourist arrivals, national tour operators and travel agencies, and hotel establishments in Ethiopia have grown at a rapid rate. This growing trend was the result of the major efforts made by the government and the private sectors in the development and establishment of institutions and legal frameworks. Whereas, the challenges include absence of domestic tourism strategy, political tribalism, use of the media for divisive agendas, language barriers, lack of organized tour, increment of prices, the travel culture of the society and monotonous tourism product in the destinations were some of them. Finally, based on the results of the study launching of domestic tourism development and marketing strategy, revision of tourism development policy, offering training for tourism operators and creating public private partnership platform were some of the recommended points to the sustainable development of domestic tourism in the nation.