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The Relationship between Tourism and Hospitality at both a Business and a Destination Level Essay Example

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The hospitality industry is a sector which provides services that surpass the customers’ basic needs. Such services include things such as leisure activities, restaurants, accommodations and transportation. Therefore, when a person stays in a hotel, hires a tour guide, eats at a restaurant, and moves from one country to another through air transport, he/she will be supporting the hospitality industry. When a person goes somewhere for pleasure, he/she will be promoting tourism. Tourism can be described as an act of visiting places for purposes of enjoyment. It normally occurs when tourists travel to various places to participate in leisure activities. People normally purchase hospitality services while touring places; that is to say, the hospitality industry offers the services needed for tourism. The figure below shows the relationship between hospitality, tourism and travel industry, whereby it indicates that the services offered by the hospitality are to some extent for tourism purpose.

Figure One: The Relationship between Hospitality and Tourism Industries (Zailani & Hong, 2011)

As pointed out by Gupta et al. (2015), hospitality and tourism normally go hand in hand. While the hospitality sector is providing services like transportation, food and beverage and accommodation, as well as leisure and recreation, tourists normally travel to destinations for leisure and recreational activities and most of the time consume food and beverage and accommodation offered by the hospitality industry. Therefore, hospitality industry relates to tourism by services and offering an enjoyable and safe environment for tourists. Every time a person tours his/her country or overseas, his/her touring will be associated closely with the hospitality industry. Therefore, it is impossible to define the boundaries between tourism, accommodation, leisure and travel since they often overlap or blend into one another. Services offered by hospitality industry such as food and beverages and accommodation are a crucial and essential key ingredient in the tourism industry.

Whether Service and Hospitality Have Become Synonymous Over Time

When a company in the hospitality industry offer services for many years, the experience in offering quality services and taking care of guests makes the company’s services to become synonymous with hospitality over time. As mentioned by McCabe, 2010), branding has been utilised successfully in the hospitality industry since the establishments of Hilton Hotels, whose name was synonymous with guaranteed service quality. Still, the word ‘hospitality’ is to a larger extent much better as compared to the phrase ‘service’ while explaining what a company in the hospitality industry is providing. As mentioned by Huigens (2004), service can be described as word done by others as a business or occupation or an act of benefit or assistance. On the other hand, he describes hospitality as a generous and cordial disposition toward or reception of guests. Besides that, hospitality is synonymous with cordiality, accommodation, amiability, warmth, among others. Therefore, the word hospitality is much better as compared to service while describing what the company have to offer; words like warmth, consideration, generous reception and cordial say it equally well. Service and hospitality are alike but different to some extent.

Issues Facing Commercial Hospitality Sector(S)

The commercial hospitality sector is driven by the increasing customer expectations with regard to exceptional service, amiability and customised personal experiences. This has resulted in numerous challenges. Aside from the growing competition, operators in this industry have to make sure that they exceed expectations at all stages of their guests’ stay in order to realise long-term profitable growth. Sustainability has also become a major issue in the commercial hospitality sector, hoteliers have been forced understand how corporate responsibility programmes could help win trust and customers, while at the same time benefiting workers, the earnings and environment. Companies in this industry are spending a large portion of their running costs on utility and energy bills. It has become imperative for hoteliers to go green. Other challenges that this industry is facing includes a shortage of skilled workers, increased competition, inability to retain a quality workforce, and the rising customer expectations (Goyal & Goyal, 2010). As pointed out by Schwarz (2016), the biggest challenge that hospitality sector is facing is the right mind set and cultural fit of the people hired at the managerial Level. Given that the hospitality sector’s recruitment world is fast-moving, attracting talented employees has become more challenging; thus, posing survival threat to the struggling companies. Other challenges include the changing labour conditions such as shrinking or compression of the labour force and the increasing benefit and health care and costs.


Goyal, A. & Goyal, A., 2010. Global Issues & Challenges in Hospitality Industry- Overview of Hospitality Industry. CBS E-Journal, vol. 6, pp.1-11.

Gupta, R., Singh, N., Kirar, I. & Bairwa, M.K., 2015. Tourism and hospitality go hand in hand. New Delhi : Vikas Publishing House.

Huigens, B., 2004. Customer Service: Will somebody please define this? [Online] Available at: https://www.hospitalitynet.org/news/4020386.html [Accessed 29 July 2017].

McCabe, S., 2010. Marketing Communications in Tourism and Hospitality. New York: Routledge.

Schwarz, L., 2016. Hospitality sector: A closer look at trends and concerns — What hiring managers should know. [Online] Available at: Hospitality sector: A closer look at trends and concerns — What hiring managers should know [Accessed 29 July 2017].

Zailani, S. & Hong, T., 2011. Service Supply Chain Practices from the Perspective of Malaysian Tourism Industry. In IEEE International Conference on Industrial Engineering and Engineering Management. Pulau Pinang, Malaysia , 2011. IEEE.