Terrorism to Tourism: The Impact of Social Media on Tourism Business of Hunza Valley
Volume IV, Issue I, 2021
Different issues, including that of terrorist activities, have affected tourism industry in the Hunza valley. Tourism industry in the Hunza valley, which attracts a huge number of tourists from all across the globe, plays a very important role for their overall economic development. So, there is a need to take account of this wave of terrorism and find out how it impact the tourism industry in the valley. However, a qualitative analysis of such impact and its durability on the tourist inflows into the valley is lacking. The main objectives of this study are (a) What is the magnitude of the impact of terrorism on tourism in the Hunza valley? (b) What are the macro-economic impacts from such loss of tourism in the valley? (c) How social media played a role in the revival of tourism industry of Hunza Valley? This research is qualitative in nature and theoretically based on development communication theory. The data collection for this research is done through semi-structured interviews of international and local visitors, travel companies, hotel managers and shopkeepers of Hunza Valley. Findings reveal that tourism industry of Pakistan had collapsed amid the terrorist attacks and an image of a dangerous country attached to it. Due to such terrorist activities in a country reduces the flow of local and foreign visitors and tourists activities. Findings show that after uprooting the terrorists and reinstating the peace by Pakistan army, social media networks has played a vital role in promoting and developing tourism business in Hunza Valley. Specially, after the vlogs of various social media influencers on Facebook took the lead role in attracting the foreign and local tourists. It helped many tour and travel companies to access customers and improved their economic condition.
Keywords: Tourism, Terrorism, Hunza Valley, Social Media, Pakistan