An Introduction to the Tourism Geography of Europe. Learning Objectives . 1 Appreciate why Europe continues to dominate world tourism; 2 Understand the major patterns of tourism demand in Europe;
Learning Objectives 1 Appreciate why Europe continues to dominate world tourism; 2 Understand the major patterns of tourism demand in Europe; 3 Be aware of the major physical and social features in Europe and their implications for tourism; 4 Appreciate the role of the European Union and the Euro in tourism organisation and development; 5 Recognise the major geographical influences on the distribution of tourism resources in Europe; 6 Recognise the role of improvements in transport infrastructure in encouraging a freer movement of tourists throughout Europe.
Introduction • A region of economic, cultural and social diversity • Dominates tourism but market share falling • Dominates tourism because: • Mature economies • Affluent population • World Class attraction • The Euro • Small countries in close proximity • Climatic variation • Mature tourism sector • Competent public sector
The Physical Setting • The North European Plain • The Mountain ranges • The Alps • The Pyrenees • The Balkans • The Carpathians • The Caucasus • The Kjolen Mountains • The Mediterranean • The Baltic sea
Cultural Features • A mosaic of languages, traditions and cultures • Lifestyle differences • Between North and South • Between West and East • Between Mountains and Plains • Historic stages of development • Prehistoric • Greco Roman • Romanesque • Gothic • Renaissance/Baroque • Industrial Revolution • Post-Industrial
Tourism demand: Demographic Trends · Decreasing propensity to marry · Increasing diversity of lifestyles and living arrangements · A trend to marrying later in life · A decline in fertility · An increase in the number of divorces · An increase in immigration
Tourism demand • Changing flows away from north/south due to: • Consumers are tiring of the inclusive-tour format; • The Mediterranean is becoming increasingly polluted; • Traditional ‘sun, sea and sand’ holidays are less popular, as people become more aware of the risk of skin cancer; • Competing destinations for other forms of tourism have become increasingly available; • New destinations are opening up in the east of Europe; • Long-haul destinations are growing in popularity; • The adoption of the Euro making what had been reasonably-priced destinations, such as Spain more expensive.
Tourism Demand Trends • Shorter tourism trips • Short break city and cultural tours • East-West travel and West-East travel • Growth of the young and the elderly travelling • More trips within Europe • Trend to activity holidays • Greater use of air travel (budget airlines) • Business tourism continues to be strong • Growth potential in the East and South • Capacity ceilings reached in the West
Supply of Tourism: Transport • Influence of de-regulation • Growth of regional airports and airlines • Growth of budget airlines • Negative impact of 9/11 • Investment in high-speed rail • Easier pan-European road travel
Tourism Supply Transport Trends • A more deregulated and liberal environment for transport and other tourism sectors, although this has been set back by the need for the public sector to support the airlines following ‘9/11’; • Improved quality of existing provision of tourism supply in the former countries of the Eastern Bloc; • Diversification of products in established destinations, such as coastal resorts; • Special interest, city-based, activity-centred developments growing at the expense of traditional beach resorts; • Consumer and government support for sustainable tourism products and destinations; • Cruising combined with special interest activities as a growth area; and • Expansion of business tourism facilities in the former Eastern Bloc.
Tourism Supply • Accommodation • Small businesses dominate • Organisation • Complex • Varies nationally • Role is to develop and promote • Trend to devolution Attractions • High Quality • Cultural and Physical • Southern Pleasure Periphery • Mountains • Lowlands
Tourism Demand • Europeans will continue to take more, but shorter tourism trips • Short-break city and cultural tourism is growing rapidly; • Traditional north-south holidays are still a significant feature of European tourism, but east-west and west-east travel is growing rapidly; • Significant market segments for the growth of tourism will be those aged over 55 years, and those aged under 25 years of age; • Intra-regional flows of tourism dominate Europe’s international tourism, but their share is decreasing; • The market is moving increasingly towards holidays which involve active pursuits, and/or exposure to local society and culture; • Decreasing popularity of the car for leisure-based trips and an increase in the use of air travel, encouraged by the growth of budget airlines; • Demand for business tourism in Europe will continue to be strong despite the growth of communication technologies; and • Capacity ceilings are being reached in some Western European countries, whereas countries in eastern and southern Europe have considerable growth potential.