JEJU, April 9 (Korea Bizwire) — The provincial government of Jeju Island, South Korea’s most popular vacation destination, is facing a dilemma as tourists and residents both are showing higher negative perceptions toward Jeju’s tourism boom.
In particular, tourists are increasingly dissatisfied with the island’s expensive prices, while Jeju residents are unhappy with the inconvenience caused by the influx of tourists despite the spread of the coronavirus.
About 54.9 percent of domestic tourists to Jeju showed dissatisfaction towards prices. This figure is far higher than 22.9 percent in 2018 and 29.1 percent in 2019, according to the latest report by the Jeju Tourism Organization.
For Busan and the Gangwon region, for example, the amount of money tourists actually spent there during travel was lower than the budget they estimated before travel.
In contrast, Jeju was the only place where tourists’ actual expenditures exceeded their budget estimates.
The report pointed out that starting from the stage of trip planning, tourists appear to have expectations that Jeju’s prices, especially food prices, would be higher than those of other tourist sites.
Another report released in February jointly by the government of Jeju Special Self-Governing Province and the Jeju Tourism Organization showed that Jeju residents are increasingly holding negative opinions towards tourists due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
On a five-point scale, with higher negative perception associated with lower scores, a larger number of Jeju residents said they are feeling inconvenience due to tourists (3.25 in 2018 → 2.60 in 2020), unstable public order (3.27 → 2.52) and private life infringements (3.45 → 2.60).
In general, those in their 20s tended to have higher negative perception, while those in their 50s and 60s showed a more positive attitude.
J. S. Shin (firstname.lastname@example.org)