Neo-Colonialism and the Volunteer Tourist Gaze: Commercial Volunteer Tourism in Cusco, Peru

School of Business and Tourism, Southern Cross University
Publication Type:
Conference Proceeding
2015, pp. 135 - 141
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CAUTHE Conference 2015 - FINAL Proceedings.pdfPublished version13.98 MB
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In recent years volunteer tourism has become increasingly commercialised and this has shifted the relationship between the volunteer tourist, the volunteer tourism organisation and the host community. Compared to mass tourism, the more reciprocal tourist-host interaction of volunteer tourism has traditionally been assumed to create a more authentic travel experience resulting in increased cross-cultural understanding. However, this paper suggests that this is perhaps no longer the case in contemporary commercial volunteer tourism. The paper presents a case study of a large commercial volunteer tourism organisation in Cusco, Peru and explores the volunteer tourists’ perceptions of Cusco and their interactions with the host community.
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