Thousands of people arrive in the Maldives annually, generating 75% of the country’s economy. Outside resorts, visitors can only spend short amounts of time on inhabited islands, to cut down contact with a stricter Muslim population.
As in many cultures, tourists generally have very different sets of values and opinions to local people, so remaining together could either upset both parties or cause cultural dilution- both options are best avoided.
Locals are often very poor and resent the rich tourists. Most of the money brought into the country is brought in on package holidays, which, although easy for the customer, are often more expensive for them, and also cause economic leakage- most of the money made from them is not kept in the host country.
The food market is put under pressure, particularly fishermen and farmers due to tourists’ demands. These pressures extend even further as fishermen turn to the reefs for fish supplies, while tourists want to watch them under more natural circumstances. Tourists produce a lot of waste which is difficult to get rid of on an island; the waste is then dumped out of site… near the local people’s homes.