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Mass tourism developed with improvements in technology, which allowed the transport of large numbers of people in a short period of time to places of leisure interest, so that greater numbers of people could begin to enjoy the benefits of leisure time. In Continental Europe, early seaside resorts include: Heiligendamm, founded in 1793 at the Baltic Sea, being the first seaside resort; Ostend, popularised by the people of Brussels; Boulogne-sur-Mer and Deauville for the Parisians; Taormina in Sicily. In the United States, the first seaside resorts in the European style were at Atlantic City, New Jersey and Long Island, New York. There has been an up-trend in tourism over the last few decades,[vague] especially in Europe, where international travel for short breaks is common. Tourists have a wide range of budgets and tastes, and a wide variety of resorts and hotels have developed to cater for them. For example, some people prefer simple beach vacations, while others want more specialised holidays, quieter resorts, family-oriented holidays, or niche market-targeted destination hotels. The developments in technology and transport infrastructure, such as jumbo jets, low-cost airlines, and more accessible airports have made many types of tourism more affordable. The WHO estimated in 2009 that there are around half a million people on board aircraft at any given time. There have also been changes in lifestyle, for example some retirement-age people sustain year round tourism. This is facilitated by internet sales of tourist services. Some sites have now started to offer dynamic packaging, in which an inclusive price is quoted for a tailor-made package requested by the customer upon impulse. There have been a few setbacks in tourism, such as the September 11 attacks and terrorist threats to tourist destinations, such as in Bali and several European cities. Also, on 26 December 2004, a tsunami, caused by the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake, hit the Asian countries on the Indian Ocean, including the Maldives. Thousands of lives were lost including many tourists. This, together with the vast clean-up operations, stopped or severely hampered tourism in the area for a time. Individual low-price or even zero-price overnight stays have become more popular in the 2000s, especially with a strong growth in the hostel market and services like CouchSurfing and airbnb being established. There has also been examples of jurisdictions wherein a significant portion of GDP is being spent on altering the primary sources of revenue towards tourism, as has occurred for instance in Dubai.

Source: Wikipedia

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