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Willingness-to-pay and the perfect safari:Valuation and cultural evaluation of safari package attributes in the Serengeti and Tanzanian Northern Circuit


  • Sekar, Nitin
  • Weiss, Jack M.
  • Dobson, Andrew P.


Governments and NGOs worldwide aim to develop models of tourism that realize the economic, environmental, and cultural ideals of ecotourism. This is true in the national parks of the Northern Safari Circuit of Tanzania, which attract hundreds of thousands of tourists annually. To better understand what tourists to Tanzania were willing to pay for various attributes of their tour package, we used a linear mixed effects model to analyze what attributes of 72 tour packages from 32 tour operators contributed to the price of tour packages. We found that the number of days spent on tour, the number of days spent in the Serengeti, the type of accommodation (basic camping versus lodges or luxury tents), the mode of transport into the park (flying versus driving), and the inclusion of cultural tourism helped predict the price of a tour package. Our findings suggest that tour operators charge 92% more for a day in the Serengeti than other Northern Circuit attractions, but we do not examine what happens to the additional rent generated by the Serengeti. Additionally, the utility of cultural tourism in attracting foreign tourists presents both tremendous opportunities and potential challenges to efforts to realize culturally sensitive ecotourism.

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  • Sekar, Nitin & Weiss, Jack M. & Dobson, Andrew P., 2014. "Willingness-to-pay and the perfect safari:Valuation and cultural evaluation of safari package attributes in the Serengeti and Tanzanian Northern Circuit," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 97(C), pages 34-41.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:ecolec:v:97:y:2014:i:c:p:34-41
    DOI: 10.1016/j.ecolecon.2013.10.012

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Lisa C. Chase & David R. Lee & William D. Schulze & Deborah J. Anderson, 1998. "Ecotourism Demand and Differential Pricing of National Park Access in Costa Rica," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 74(4), pages 466-482.
    2. David Barkin, 2003. "Alleviating Poverty Through Ecotourism: Promises and Reality in the Monarch Butterfly Reserve of Mexico," Environment, Development and Sustainability: A Multidisciplinary Approach to the Theory and Practice of Sustainable Development, Springer, vol. 5(3), pages 371-382, September.
    3. Wunder, Sven, 2001. "Poverty Alleviation and Tropical Forests--What Scope for Synergies?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 29(11), pages 1817-1833, November.
    4. Josaphat Kweka & Oliver Morrissey & Adam Blake, 2003. "The economic potential of tourism in Tanzania," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 15(3), pages 335-351.
    5. Don Fuller & Julia Caldicott & Grant Cairncross & Simon Wilde, 2007. "Poverty, Indigenous Culture and Ecotourism in Remote Australia," Development, Palgrave Macmillan;Society for International Deveopment, vol. 50(2), pages 141-148, June.
    6. Gossling, Stefan, 1999. "Ecotourism: a means to safeguard biodiversity and ecosystem functions?," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 303-320, May.
    7. Shultz, Steven & Pinazzo, Jorge & Cifuentes, Miguel, 1998. "Opportunities and limitations of contingent valuation surveys to determine national park entrance fees: evidence from Costa Rica," Environment and Development Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 3(1), pages 131-149, February.
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    Cited by:

    1. Lal, Pankaj & Wolde, Bernabas & Masozera, Michel & Burli, Pralhad & Alavalapati, Janaki & Ranjan, Aditi & Montambault, Jensen & Banerjee, Onil & Ochuodho, Thomas & Mugabo, Rodrigue, 2017. "Valuing visitor services and access to protected areas: The case of Nyungwe National Park in Rwanda," Tourism Management, Elsevier, vol. 61(C), pages 141-151.
    2. Jiao, Xi & Walelign, Solomon Zena & Nielsen, Martin Reinhardt & Smith-Hall, Carsten, 2019. "Protected areas, household environmental incomes and well-being in the Greater Serengeti-Mara Ecosystem," Forest Policy and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 106(C), pages 1-1.
    3. Bayliss, Julian & Schaafsma, Marije & Balmford, Andrew & Burgess, Neil D. & Green, Jonathan M.H. & Madoffe, Seif S. & Okayasu, Sana & Peh, Kelvin S.-H. & Platts, Philip J. & Yu, Douglas W., 2014. "The current and future value of nature-based tourism in the Eastern Arc Mountains of Tanzania," Ecosystem Services, Elsevier, vol. 8(C), pages 75-83.
    4. May, R. & Jackson, C. & Bevanger, K. & Røskaft, E., 2019. "Servicescape of the Greater Serengeti-Mara Ecosystem: Visualizing the linkages between land use, biodiversity and the delivery of wildlife-related ecosystem services," Ecosystem Services, Elsevier, vol. 40(C).


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