Tourism

STUDY: The unsettling truths about how Aussies travel

Ali Coulton

Ali Coulton

A new study of Aussie travellers has revealed some unsettling truths about our intentions versus our actions when it comes to travelling abroad.

The study, which was commissioned by Kathmandu, tackles overtourism and the impacts of unsustainable travel by asking more than 1,000 Aussies revealing question about their travel habits.

The study revealed 92 per cent of travellers surveyed believed that they align to some degree with the qualities of a good traveller, but 24 per cent of travellers admit to not treating their destinations with as much respect as their own country and only 49 per cent researched local customs, traditions, and social sensitivities before travelling.

46 per cent of Aussie travellers surveyed said they are motivated to travel by ticking off bucket list destinations and 50 per cent were motivated by “social media inspo” which puts pressure on popular tourism destinations and results in overtourism.

“This pressure, now referred to as overtourism, is a hugely complex issue we must address if we’re to accommodate the 1.8bn global tourist arrivals by 2030.3 But the problem isn’t just volume, it’s concentration,” said Claudio Milano, international researcher, lecturer and consultant in tourism.

“Crowds are flocking in droves to some of the world’s most fragile historic destinations like Machu Picchu and Venice that weren’t built to withstand thousands of footsteps every day.

“While policymakers need to focus on ensuring they develop sustainable growth strategies for tourist destinations, we all have a part to play as travellers – in choosing where – and how we travel.”

The study found 36 per cent of travellers wouldn’t be confident to explain what over-tourism meant, while 30 per cent wouldn’t change their plans for it either. Milano said this indicates over-tourism is often oversimplified and not well understood by travellers, nor the multiple agents that make up the tourism system.

The research is accompanied by a new documentary series undertaken by investigative journalist and SBS’s The Feed host. In the series, Fran goes travelling overseas to find out first hand from locals what we can be doing better.

KMD-HH-SG-022

The three-part documentary series explores tourism-driven social, cultural, environmental and economic factors affecting Nepal and Indonesia.

The third documentary unpacks the short-term rental crisis in our major cities, where Airbnb listings are ranked #1 in the world in ratio to liveable dwellings in Sydney and Melbourne, causing residents to feel like strangers in their own neighbourhood – plus the mass-traveller pressures being felt at one of the most ‘Instagram famous’ regional beaches; Hyams Beach.

“This herd-like mentality means people aren’t necessarily connecting with the cultures they are visiting in an authentic way either, and at times, creating tension with local people,” Fran said.

“So much so there’s talk of tourist bans in temples by the Indonesian government, who are fed up with the disrespect.”

We all know that tourism can certainly be helpful, with many places around the world relying on tourism dollars to survive.

But with less than 1 in 5 Aussie travellers actively thinking of ways to maximise their tourist dollars in the places they visit, we could be doing much better to ensure our money is going in the right pockets.

You can watch the documentary series here, and read the full report here.

SEE WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING

Wholesalers

Wholesaler wrap: Insight Vacations launches US/Canada brochure, new Contiki trips and sale + more

This week’s wholesaler wrap has a bit of a clam chowder/poutine flavour to it. Meaning there’s a lot of news about US and Canada tours.

Share

CommentComments

Destinations

One dead and 11 injured as magnitude 8.0 earthquake rips through Peru

A massive earthquake has hit northern Peru, causing widespread damage to homes and roads, and leaving at least one person dead and 11 others injured.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Destinations

Bali’s Mount Agung erupts again and… cue the flight cancellations and delays

by Huntley Mitchell

Like clockwork, Mount Agung has spewed its guts up once again, causing chaos amongst the airlines flying in and out of Bali.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Man removed from Jetstar flight after hurling abuse and headbutting federal police officer

A man’s disruptive and abusive behaviour has caused chaos on a Jetstar flight, resulting in his removal and a court case.

Share

CommentComments

Hotels

Hotel review: Naumi Singapore

by Harriet Jayne Morris

Travel Weekly’s roving reporter recently got the chance to put their feet up at Naumi Singapore. They even found time to do a review about their stay.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Boeing 737 MAX to return to the air by June

The word on the street is Boeing’s 737 MAX will return to circulation next month, following the manufacturer’s software update and FAA approval.

Share

CommentComments

Destinations

Wholesalers

Excite Holidays launches trade campaign with Travel South USA

This new campaign has inspired Travel Weekly’s editor to play a bit of Dolly Parton on the office stereo while chowing down on a three-piece feed from KFC.

Share

CommentComments

Destinations

Tourism

National Tourism Service of Chile appoints GTI for trade and PR representation in Australia

It’s understood staff at GTI have all enrolled in evening Spanish language classes after scoring some new work with Chile’s tourism board.

Share

CommentComments

Destinations

REVEALED: The most popular domestic holiday destination for Aussies

We’ve tried to be clever here by not giving away anything in the headline, but then our junior journo pointed out the obvious accompanying photo.

Share

CommentComments

Destinations

Tourism

“Recipe for disaster”: Startling photo of Mount Everest traffic jam goes viral

If there was ever an extreme example of overtourism, then this is it.

Share

CommentComments

Destinations

Tourism

Instagram model slammed for vandalising 200-year-old statue

In what appears to be a desperate attempt for more followers, an Insta model has taken to a historic statue with a hammer, and suffered the consequences.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Qantas passenger accuses airline of “fat-shaming” after being booted from exit row seat

A Qantas passenger has accused the airline of “fat-shaming” and bullying him after being removed from an exit row seat for being too large.

Share

CommentComments