A Potential Model for a Private Travel Company-Community Partnership in Community-based Tourism: The Case of Mekong Rustic, Vietnam
Inequality is a growing global challenge. However, the current mainstream tourism approach has not decreased inequality. New approaches need to be devised to enable this valuable sector to fight against inequality and poverty. Worldwide, tourism is a leading sector whose contribution to development should not be underestimated. This article recognizes community-based tourism (CBT) as an approach that can contribute to achieving this objective. However, for this to happen, CBT needs to be correctly implemented to grow. While the government is often regarded as a key player in promoting CBT development and growth, the private sector can also play a crucial part in that endeavor, as shown in this article. Much of the information is based on an interview with a key informant and data from document analysis. Using a case study in Vietnam, the article analyzes a private company’s role in CBT in a private sector-community CBT partnership model. Bearing in mind the importance of context, the model is an example of how CBT can flourish in a partnership. While the private company does not represent CBT itself, the approach represents a valuable strategy that could positively contribute towards robust CBT development if enhanced and managed within specific timeframes and goals. The findings reveal that private firms can help families register and participate in CBT. They can also help them improve their facilities, products, services, and marketing and public relation skills development, including expanding their business networks.
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