Willingness to pay
To help throw some light on the consequences of raising park entry fees, I was asked to investigate the ‘willingness-to-pay’ for entry to Chitwan by domestic and international visitors. The analysis also explored the factors affecting this willingness, and the trade-offs among entry fees, visitation demand and park revenue (Pandit et al, 2015).
We interviewed three groups of visitors: domestic (Nepalese), foreigners from south Asia, and foreigners from other places. And we undertook the surveys during the tourist off-season with the reasoning that this was the time that the Nepalese economy was most sensitive to a tourist downturn.
What we found was that a visitors’ average willingness-to-pay was more than 2.5 times the then entry fee. In other words, charging more was unlikely to deter visitors but could lead to significant increases in revenue.
Created with images by gorkhe1980 - "mountain annapurna nature" • Marina & Enrique - "Annapurna (left) and Machapuchare (right)" • GraceMarcellaNorman - "MUS-9798" • JessicaBlueElephants - "nepal rhino national park" • Jeffrey Eisen - "Khao Khiew Zoo, Thailand" • Sergey Pesterev - "Lake Gosaikund"