Factors determining visitors’ choice of souvenirs at religious sites: case study of old Kampala mosque and Christ the King church
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In Uganda, it is unclear how religious tourists are motivated to choose the type of souvenirs they buy. In particular, the factors that determine choice of souvenirs by religious tourists are not clearly documented. This study assessed the factors that determine visitors’ choice of souvenirs at religious sites at Old Kampala Mosque and Christ the King Church. The specific objectives were (i) to profile the religious souvenirs bought by visitors at Old Kampala Mosque and Christ the King Church (ii) to examine the factors that motivate visitors to purchase religious souvenirs at Old Kampala Mosque and Christ the King Church and (iii) to examine the temporal variation in demand for religious souvenirs. A sample size of 38 respondents was obtained and included 22 from Old Kampala Mosque and 16 from Christ the King Chuch and making use of both simple random and purposive sampling techniques. Data were collected using questionnaires and guided interviews and was analyzed quantitatively using SPSS and qualitatively using thematic analysis. The study revealed that there are different religious souvenirs at both religious places ranging from Kanzu, mat and Quran for moslems while Prayer books, Bible and rosary souvenirs were mostly bought at Christ the king church. Holy water at Christ the king church was found significant to the Catholics as they believe that this Holy water offers healing powers as it contains blessings from the God almighty urther the study revealed that there are different factors that motivate visitors to buy religious souvenirs at both Old Kampala and Christ the King Church which included gifts, affordability, having spiritual attachment to the visitors and to know more about God. Ways of how to improve purchase of these souvenirs at both Old Kampala Mosque and Christ the King church included Creating awareness of the religious places, enlightening the people on the relevance of the souvenirs and reducing of the prices of souvenirs. The study recommends that an awareness campaign on the avialible types of souvenirs at religious centers should be done to infor visitors, the designers for these souvenirs about origninality and authenticity of the items since most visitors were motivated by the orininality of the souvenirs. Lastly, leaders and mosque leaders should work with organizations like Uganda Tourism Board to help market the souvenirs as tourism products.