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Until 19th century, travel for recreation was only undertaken by the elite. With the advent of rail, mass
travel was available for the first time and destinations such as Brighton, UK and Coney Island, NY
developed. Status was then defined by the mode of travel. In 20th century status was revealed by the
nature of the destinations. Travel and tourism has been going on since time immemorial, and for the
'twentieth century tourist, the world has become one large department store of countrysides and cities'
(Schivelbusch, 1986). By 21st century, travel became a new economy - tourism - available to all with
enough money.
The focus of the tourism industry has shifted from air travel, overnights, meals and so on to total
experiences or fantasy worlds associated with specific destinations (Keller and Koch, 1995). This new
tourism phenomenon is not only influenced by economic factors but also by new cultures and a new
generation of tourists. In tourism, the different destinations compete worldwide through globalisation
(Saayman, 1998).
The paradigm shift from mass tourism (also known as Fordian Tourism), which was the norm for more
than three decades, no longer suffices to achieve competitiveness in tourism enterprises and regions. A
new paradigm, or new tourism, is gathering momentum owing to its ability to face prevailing
circumstances (Fayos-Solá, 1996).
Modern information and communication technology development in symbiosis with the transformation of
tourism demand gave rise to a new tourism. This paradigm shift is not easy to define but is indicative of a
new type of tourist who wants a new or different product. The new tourists are more experienced, more
educated, more "green", more flexible, more independent, more quality-conscious and "harder to please"
than ever before (Cater and Goodall, 1992; De Villiers, 1996). Furthermore, they are well read and know
what they want and where they want to go.