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Nowadays, the hospitality industry is a powerful system of the regional economy and tourist center and an important component of the tourism economy. The hospitality industry is different means of collective and individual accommodation: the hotels, motels, youth hostels and dormitories, apartments, tourist shelters, as well as the private sector involved in the tourist accommodation.
In order to fully describe and explore this theme, it is important to introduce the concept of the hospitality industry and its main characteristics in the beginning of this paper.
The concept of the hospitality industry
To start with, hospitality is a domestic concept, which means a special kind of hospitality: hospitality of the hosts at the reception of the guests. Telfer (1996) characterized the nature of hospitality as the sharing of drink, food and shelter to people who actually are not permanent members of a household. In turn, Lockwood and Jones emphasized that there was no responsibility for guests to return hospitality to hosts (2000).
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The hospitality industry as an economic activity includes the provision of services and the organization of short-term accommodations in the hotels, motels, campsites and other accommodation facilities for a fee. According to Lashley and Morrison, “to better understand hospitality activities we need to understand the provision of food, drink and accommodation in the nuclear family” (2000, p. 10). In addition to above listed, Lashley and Morrison (2000) state that, “hospitality is essentially a relationship based on hosts and guests” (p. 15).
The hospitality industry includes various spheres of human activity – tourism, recreation, entertainment, hotel and restaurant business, catering, sightseeing activities, exhibitions and various scientific conferences. Brotherton and Wood (2000) defined hospitality management as “The management of hospitality in that one set of intellectual constructs and practices (management) are applied to another (hospitality))” (p. 168).
The hospitality industry is a business aimed at providing the visitors with accommodation, food, and organizing their leisure time. The travel services, including in the framework of hotel services, referred to the social and cultural services. They are built on the principles of the modern hospitality, which increases their role in the development of domestic tourism, but also poses the certain problems in the system of training for tourism and hotel service.
Hospitality management is one of the fastest growing industries, which accounts for about 6% of the global gross domestic product and about 5% of total tax revenues, stimulating, in addition, the development of other areas: construction, trade, agriculture, consumer goods, etc.
Thus, the hospitality industry is a comprehensive scope of employees that meet any demands and desires of tourists. The commercial orientation of tourism enterprises leads to tourism and service businesses as well as the creation of specialized industry for the production of souvenirs and tourist destination. This circumstance makes it possible to allocate tourism and service in a separate set of service-tourism enterprises.
The positive impacts
Surrounding the hospitality industry, there are a lot of impacts, which have negative and positive aspects affecting them.
It is necessary to note that a cultural aspect is a very important component and plays a big role in the hospitality industry. The cultural skills help to deal more effectively with foreign visitors. The cultural aspect itself is a big impact, which has effects on the hospitality industry. In order to better understand how the cultural aspect will have impact on the practice of hospitality management and to find out that negative and positive aspects are involved, tea culture in the hospitality industry between China and Australia will give us a perfect understanding of how this tea ceremony affected the country’s economy that leads to the effects of the hospitality industry.
China has some different unique features, and can also create a competitive environment for visits and vacations. Nowadays, China ranked first in the area of tea plantations and the total volume of production. China is one of the world’s largest producers of tea. In this country, tea culture began to emerge a few millennia ago. The Chinese first discovered tea, were the first people who began to breed tea trees and first figured out how to process the tea leaves in order to get a flavored drink. Almost all nations, one way or another, have borrowed the cult of tea from the Chinese. Tea is a traditional drink in China and is used daily. The Chinese tea ceremony is not only popular with the crowds in China, but also abroad. The art of preparing and drinking tea helps people to tune into a contemplative mood, to forget about the daily hustle and to share calmness and composure with others. The Chinese drink tea in everyday situations and during public events and rituals. In China, tea is not just a drink, but it played an important role in traditional Chinese medicine, Chinese cuisine and Buddhism. In order to get tea benefits in full, it is necessary to use it very carefully. Nothing could distract the Chinese people from a particular perception of the world of tea; they contrived a special tea house. A tea ceremony unites people in a joint action. The tea energy gives clarity of thought and clarity of actions. It destroys boredom, filling a variety of experiences every passing moment. According to Evans, “tea is made with only water, therefore, good teas require good water” (1992, p.28). The Chinese tea ceremony is a way to show your hospitality to other people. This is a well-known fact that the Chinese emphasize several types of special circumstances for making and sharing tea drink. First of all, this is “a sign of respect”. In Chinese society, this is a tradition to express your respect to other people with the help of a cup of tea. Sharing tea drinking is considered to be a kind of “an act of solidarity”, offering the cups of tea can be in different situations interpreted as an apology and a request for conciliation, a demonstration of gratitude, etc. That is why this cultural aspect is very important in the hospitality industry. According to Stevens (2001), “Good communication is central to a strong ethical climateâ€¦” (p. 240).
It is not superfluous to mention that the Chinese tea ceremony (it is called “kung Fu cha” in China) by their nature cannot be fussy, carries out in a hurry, among other things. In the beginning you need to make up your mind physically: remove outer clothing, change your shoes in soft straw slippers and turn off cell phones, so that nothing “outside” distractions. It is recommended to dress in “eastern” clothing – a kimono, embroidered by (for ex., dragons, cherry blossoms, etc.). These actions make up your mind psychologically. People are serious about this tea ceremony and it requires an inspirational and meaningful approach. In China, a lot of people state that the tea ceremony is the interaction of fire, water, tea leaves, spaces and conditions.
The best way to leave a good impression about your country is through culture and people. These actions help to form close relationships that will promote to exchange different services and goods between the guests and the hosts. Tea culture in the hospitality industry will help to promote people to buy different sorts of tea. Many tourists bring tea from China as gifts to their relatives and friends. This is really very good for the country’s economy. The Chinese tea ceremony will attract foreigners and, consequently, the economy of the country will increase and strengthen. In addition to the above-mentioned information, it is necessary to add that new trade routes will open up and export sales of tea will increase. The positive impacts could be that the cultural aspect (a tea ceremony) is a way of experiencing another culture and when the foreign tourists experience and get to know new things it widens knowledge and, consequently, affects your own culture.
The negative impacts
Despite the large number of positive impacts on the hospitality industry, the cultural aspect also has negative impacts and consequences.
First of all, it is important to emphasize negative impacts on the hospitality industry, such as the cultural conflicts. A cultural conflict is a conflict that arises in the mind of an individual who locate at the crossroads of two cultures with conflicting norms, standards, requirements. In other words, the cultural conflict is a clash of different behavioral stereotypes. The cultural conflicts are widespread in tourism, the difference of cultures and customs of different people and countries often leads to mutual misunderstanding, and sometimes even to enmity. Besides, there are the factors, the so-called “socio-cultural nature”, that adversely affect the livelihoods of local people, their culture and traditions.
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“Culture” is one of the main aspects of tourism. This is a well-known fact that the experience of different unique cultures can be very useful and educational for the foreign visitors and highly beneficial and useful for the community. However, tourism is a very invasive and intrusive process, which directs different traditional communities in the modern world, threatening their cultural products and different distinct lifestyles.
This is a proven fact that commercialization, the loss of identity and originality in the products of local craftsmen are the factors caused by different negative impacts.
In addition to this, negative impacts are: the tourists’ invasions into the inner life of churches, desecration of religious traditions. An excessive number of tourists could provoke such actions as damage to the archaeological, historical and architectural monuments because of an improper use or because of an excessive flow of tourists, which exceeds the throughput capacity or inappropriate development.
Furthermore, an excessive number of tourists will lead to air pollution due to an excessive use of vehicles with internal combustion engines in the tourist areas, as well as noise pollution (aircraft, boats and hydrofoils, the excessive number of vehicles). There will be the problems of disposing of garbage in natural areas, spa centers and tourist sites. Moreover, an excessive number of tourists will lead to the violation of ecology of natural areas due to unreasonable construction of tourist infrastructure.
Growing demand from tourists for the basic goods and services often leads to higher prices, which adversely affects the local residents whose income is unchanged. Tourism development and associated increases in demand for housing could lead to a catastrophic increase in the cost of land and construction costs. But not only is it difficult for locals to meet and pay for their daily needs and this leads to the domination of other people in land markets and to the internal migration that destroy an economic opportunity for the local residents. If the number of tourists, long-term residents in some areas, exceeds a certain critical number, it can lead to a catastrophic rise in prices. Tourism development can cost the local government and taxpayers a lot of money. Businessmen involved in business development, may require the government to improve the airport, roads and other infrastructure, which usually leads to an increase in taxes and other financial costs. The public resources spent on financing infrastructure and violation of tax liabilities may reduce the public investment in other more important areas, such as education and health.
O’Connor (2005, p. 267) admitted that “only once an understanding of hospitality’s origins and its place in human nature is achieved can one expect to discover what hospitality means today, and more importantly what it will mean to those entering the industry in the future”.
Thus, taking the above-mentioned information into account, it is important to draw a conclusion that the hospitality industry is a business sector, consisting of such types of services that are based on the principles of hospitality, characterized by generosity and friendliness toward visitors. Hospitality is one of the concepts of civilization, which is due to the progress and time has become a powerful industry that employs millions of professionals, creating perfect conditions for the consumers (tourists). King (1995) stated that the main purpose of giving hospitality is normally a private generosity and quality. Supporting this argument, Jones (1996) said that “hospitality is made up of 2 (two) distinct services, which are the provision of overnight accommodation for people staying away from home and the provision of sustenance for people eating away from home” (p.1).
Nevertheless, there are both negative and positive aspects, which affect the hospitality industry. These two sides of the impacts were discussed. On the one hand, the cultural aspect as the Chinese tea ceremony helped to improve the tourism environment, living a perfect image about this country and attracted a lot of tourists. Consequently, this helped to improve service and management quality and increased the exchange of knowledge and culture between countries. On the other hand, there are negative impacts that include cultural conflicts; air pollution due to an excessive use of vehicles, a large number of tourists will reduce the quality of services and a catastrophic rise in prices, etc.
In addition, Morrison and O’Gorman emphasized that “It [hospitality] represents the cordial reception, welcome and entertainment of guests or strangers of diverse social backgrounds and cultures charitably, socially or commercially with kind and generous liberality, into one’s home space to dine and/or lodge temporarily. Dependent on circumstance and context the degree to which the hospitality offering is conditional or unconditional may vary” (2006, p.3).
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