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More than 40% of the Spanish population is excluded from tourism consumption

A study by the University of La Laguna has re-examined the link between tourism and social inequality in Spain, using a survey carried out at origin by the adult population. The results indicate that slightly more than 20% of the consumers make more than 70% of trips.

Si hubiera que definir el perfil de personas que menos viajan, destacan especialmente las mujeres mayores sin estudios. / SINC.
Más del 40% de la población española está excluida del consumo turístico. Photo: Olmo Calvo

Un estudio de la Universidad de La Laguna ha reexaminado la relación entre turismo y desigualdad social en España, a partir de una encuesta realizada en origen a la población adulta. Sus resultados indican que algo más del 20% de los consumidores realiza más del 70% de los viajes.

Researchers at the University of La Laguna (ULL) have studied the way in which tourism consumption is distributed in Spanish society.

The study was based on a segmentation analysis that reflects the interactions between numerous dimensions of the social structure and identifies the privileged groups and the excluded from this type of consumption.

“We have observed that a relatively small group of people exists that makes many trips (20%), and that approximately a third of the population has an average participation in tourism. More than 40% are excluded from tourism consumption, whether due to economic reasons (28%) or other (14%),” Pablo Rodriguez, co-author of the study recently published by the journal Revista de Turismo y Patrimonio Cultural, told SINC.

If I had to define the profile of people who travelled less, older women without higher education

The expert stressed that there is no unique profile of people who enjoy tourism any less, since people do not travel for very different reasons.

“There are those who can not and there are those who do not want to travel. If I had to define the profile of people who travelled less, older women without higher education would stand out especially, but in inequality, different factors are influential depending on the stage of the life cycle, such as the level of studies and social class, living alone or having children, or having emigrated,” he argued.

Tourism by gender

The role of gender is especially complex in this investigation. Cases exist (middle-aged women who live alone) whereby they travel as much as, or more than men, while in other parts of the population, the differences between women are more acute than between men and women.

“For example, amongst women aged 18 to 29, the data indicates that 70% travel while only 30% of women aged 60 or over travel. There is more difference than between men and women within any age group, never exceeding 30 percentage points,” pointed out Rodríguez.

This investigation is based on data from a telephone survey carried out by the Institute for Advanced Studies (CSIC, Cordoba) within the framework of the collaboration agreement with the Autonomous Government of Andalusia.

“The field work was carried out in 2008 and it is very likely that these differences have been intensified further with the crisis. In the end, that is what the data on social inequality indicates, and tourism consumption is a reflection of that inequality,” stressed the expert.

The latest data from the Institute for Tourism Studies, provided by the FAMILITUR survey, indicates a sudden drop in the tourist activity of the Spanish.

80% of the population in the Northern European countries travels

Living alone favours travel when one is young in comparison with those who have children, while for older people being alone limits them

The objective of the investigation that they raised at the University of La Laguna (ULL) was to combat the idea that there are factors that are more influential or less influential in tourism and suggest that all analysed factors (sex, age, studies, economic activity, social class, household type and migratory past) influence in some way or another.

For example, they confirmed that living alone favours travel when one is young in comparison with those who have children, while for older people being alone limits them.

“Obviously, the most determining factor is the economic one,” pointed out the expert “since travelling costs money, but this is not ‘mathematical’, nor does it imply that you travel as much as you earn. At the same income level, there are people who either do or do not want to travel, or who travel more or less, and it is here that the level of studies seems to have a lot of influence in the interest or desire to travel”.

Lastly, the data from the latest Eurobarometer studies indicates that the least unequal societies also have a very generalized tourism consumption. “Here the Northern European countries are a key example, around 80% of the population travels, while in Spain the percentage is only around 50%,” concluded Rodríguez.

References:
Pablo Rodríguez González y Manuel A. Santana Turégano. “Consumo turístico y desigualdad social en España” 12 (1): 29-51. 2014.

Source: SINC
Copyright: Creative Commons

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