Service Quality in Bako National Park, Sarawak.
Researcher: Fazlina Yaakub, Ahmad Shuib, Abas Said
The study by the researcher at Universiti Malaysia Sarawak investigates the level of service quality provided in Bako National Park by evaluating tourist’s expectation relative to their perception or actual experience while visiting the park. Complaints from tourists have been heard indicating that services provided in Bako National Park need attention from its management. These complaints are signals of tourist’s dissatisfaction with services and facilities provided at the park.
Over the years, Bako National Park has been viewed, in many tourist generating countries, as one of the few remaining places that offer beautiful and unique sceneries, immeasurable opportunity for wildlife viewing in pristine natural habitats. However, lack of management attention and understanding about tourist’s expectation may have caused declines in tourist’s satisfaction leading to the decline in volume of tourists visiting the park. One of the many complaints received from tourist concerns dissatisfaction with the service quality in the national park.
Research finding shows that, most tourists who come to Bako National Park leave the park with unsatisfactory experience. Although the level of dissatisfaction is not very negative, the fact remains that the visitors are not satisfied. The gaps between the expectation and perception of the visitors are negative implying dissatisfaction. Several socio-demographic factors may have been responsible for the differences in the service quality expectation and perception of the visitors.
While it should be emphasized that the results of this study comes from a limited sample size and reduced number of elements in the service quality dimensions, the model used is useful because it takes into account the expectation of the visitors (who may have prior information of the services and facilities offered) and the actual experience of the visitors while at the park. Knowing the gaps between expectation and perception would allow the management to look into aspects that can be improved in the service deliveries at the park.
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