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Abstract

The Daintree Rainforest is a prime attraction for Tropical North Queensland as a tourist destination. Visitation of the rainforest, specifically the Cape Tribulation section, has increased rapidly as impediments to self-drive access have been removed. This paper examines the potential for the local council to manage the volume of self-drive access to the Cape Tribulation region by price mechanisms. The assessment is based on estimates of willingness to pay from a contingent valuation survey of self-drive tourists to the region, from which estimates of consumer surplus and demand elasticity are derived. A comprehensive discussion of the social and economic implications and transaction costs of price-based mechanisms is offered.

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