A. Real winners of tourism
B. Negative effects of tourism
C. Growing tourism in the world
D. Developing tourism with caution
E. Benefits to the locals from tourism
F. Tourism problems and possible solutions
On the Mediterranean island of Majorca in Spain, the locals are angry. Too late. In the last quarter of 20th century, they obtained profit from foreign visitors wanting to buy up property on their beautiful island. Suddenly, it occurred to Majorca that the island no longer belonged to them. Its 630,000 inhabitants（居民）are increasingly convinced that the 14 million visitors a year are far too much of a good thing. Water is in short supply, pollution is worsening, and there is no affordable housing left for them to buy.
Tourism is the world’s largest and fastest growing industry. In 1950, 25 million people traveled abroad; last year, it was 750 million. The World Tourism Organization predicts that 1.6 billion people, by 2020, will travel each year, spending over two trillion（万亿）US dollars.
The host country may not see many benefits. In Thailand, 60% of the $$ 4 billion annual tourism income leaves the country. Tourists arrange by travel companies tend to stay at a big foreign-owned hotels, buying few local products. Mass tourism（团队旅游）usually leaves little money inside the country and most of the money goes to the airlines, the tour operators,and the foreign hotel owners, who are the final winners of tourism.
These days the industry’s most urgent question may be how to control the flow of tourist. A typical example of this is Italy, where great cultural centers like the Florence and Venice can’t handle all the tourists they get every summer. In Florence, it’s half inhabitants have to live with the pollution, traffic jam, and crime caused by 11 million visitors a year. Now there is talk about how to solve these problems, like raising hotel taxes, or even changing admission to some public squares. The idea is to discourage at least some visitors, as well as to pay for cleaning up the mess.
For many poorer countries, tourism may still offer the best hope foe development. The Vietnamese are doing their best to open up their country. Libya has paid $$ 1 million for a study. They all wanted tourists. Yet if something isn’t done, tourism seems certain to become the victim of its success. Its effect on the environment is a major concern. For this reason, tourist organizations need to have second thoughts about what exactly they are trying to sell.
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