Destination attractiveness of Slovakia: perspectives of demand from major tourism source markets

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Technická Univerzita v Liberci
Technical university of Liberec, Czech Republic
The destination attractiveness is an expression of territory attractiveness in relation to the decision-making process of its visitors. It plays a key role in determination of destination’s competitive advantage; subsequently it influences the economic effects resulting from goods and services consumption in its territory. In scientific literature a significant attention has been paid to this concept for several decades. The aim of this paper was to examine destination attractiveness of Slovakia in terms of the most important tourism source markets demand – Visegrad countries’ inhabitants, representing 80% share of the overall visitation of Slovakia. The attractiveness analysis results in terms of satisfied demand suggest that Slovakia is attractive to 4% of the V4 countries’ population who visit it on average once a year, that is, to 14% of the V4 countries’ population, who undertake one over-night stay per year on average. Slovakia is extremely attractive to the Czechs thanks to its proximity, common political history and non-existing language barrier; however, it remains unattractive to other V4 countries inhabitants. In terms of potential demand, Slovakia meets the ideal destination expectations of 70–71% of V4 countries population, which means it is strongly attractive to them. The Poles find it the most attractive while Hungarian and Czech residents find it less attractive. Slovakia’s own inhabitants appreciate this tourism destination the least. They particularly criticize lack of quality services, negative attitude toward customers and high prices which do not correspond with the quality of services. Slovak respondents find the natural beauties of their own country most attractive. Such an evaluation is common for the Czech and Hungarian respondents too. According to the Polish respondents, the most attractive in Slovakia is the positive attitude of local population. They evaluate sports and recreational facilities and activities extremely positively. The inhabitants of Slovakia, Hungary and Poland find Slovakia much more attractive from the point of view of perceived destination attractiveness than in terms of satisfied demand attractiveness. Thus, there is a large gap for visitation increase, but also for perception improvement of Slovakia as a tourism destination. In the case of the Czech market, the attractiveness of Slovakia in terms of satisfied demand is very strong, and it is necessary to maintain this positive fact. In this connection the innovations and their promotion on relevant markets may be decisive. And thus the position of tourism as a tool for economic, social and cultural development of the country can be enhanced.
scenarios, strategic planning, investment decision making, risk, risk analysis, Monte Carlo simulation