Tourism Association of Canton Sarajevo has recently implemented a pilot project “Tourist Satisfaction Survey” regarding the general tourist offer available in Canton Sarajevo. The main objective of this project was to identify the profile of foreign visitors as well as measure the degree of foreign tourists’ satisfaction with particular elements of Canton Sarajevo tourist offer.
The results of the research indicate the diversity in profiles of foreign tourists visiting Sarajevo as well as some of the key advantages and disadvantages of Canton Sarajevo as a tourist destination.
The key issues of the conducted pilot research are:
- Reason for visiting: Vacation and holidays are primary reasons for 74.8% tourists. Within this number, there is approximately the same proportion of those staying in hotels, hostels and private accommodation. Exploring the culture and sightseeing is the main reason for visiting for 58.8% of tourists.
- Travel characteristics: The Internet is the primary source of information about destination Sarajevo for 60.1% of tourists followed by recommendations by friends and relatives (42.4%). The other sources are media (9.2%), printed travel guides (9.4%) and travel agency recommendations (11.9%). Independently organized trip, directly through internet remains the most popular way with 56.7% of tourists booking their trip directly via the Internet.
- Tourist stay characteristics: The majority of tourists spend up to 3 days in Canton Sarajevo (69.1%) of which there is approximately the same proportion of those staying in hotels, hostels and private accommodation.
- Satisfaction with particular elements of tourist offer: Most tourists expressed a high degree of satisfaction with the hospitality of local population, gastronomic offer and overall “value for money”, as well as offered tourist activities, sights and facilities (museums, galleries, historic monuments etc) and available local products and souvenirs. Slightly lesser degree of satisfaction was expressed by tourists regarding the quality of outdoor activities, nightlife and entertainment, and shopping opportunities. Tourists are very satisfied with social elements (personal security and “family friendly” environment), while they are dissatisfied with the quality of local transport and the clarity of road signs and tourist signalization.
- Key advantages and disadvantages of the destination: According to tourists, the key advantages of Canton Sarajevo as a tourist destination are ’diverse and picturesque architecture’, ’gastronomic offer’, ’hospitality and kindness of local population’ and ’cultural heritage’. On the other hand, the key disadvantages of Canton Sarajevo as a tourist destination are: ’cleanliness and maintenance of the destination’ and ’poor public infrastructure’ (public transport and traffic jams).
- Overall satisfaction and future intentions: 90% of tourists are very satisfied with their stay in Canton Sarajevo and will express positive comments about this destination to their friends and relatives. Furthermore, 80% of tourists consider visiting Canton Sarajevo “a good value for money” and intend to recommend this destination to their friends and relatives. As many as 80% of tourists expressed a desire to visit Canton Sarajevo again.
This pilot project provides an information base regarding strategic tourism management in Canton Sarajevo, development of tourist projects and planning and implementation of marketing activities in relevant key markets. The method used for data collection were individual interviews and the basic tool for collecting data was a structured questionnaire. Approximately 100 tourists from 60 different countries were interviewed. Tourism Association of Canton Sarajevo implemented this project in cooperation with Prof. Dr. Almir Peštek and Dr. Merima Činjarević.
Following this pilot project, it is the intention of Tourism Association of Canton Sarajevo to establish a system which will continuously measure the levels of tourist satisfaction.