Sustainable tourism and rental property market

Throughout November 2011 Campaya Holiday Rentals have published a number of articles looking at the Changing Face of Tourism, and in particular how it will effect the holiday property rental market in 2012. With the market in 2011 driven by the ongoing economic crisis and political unrest some property owners have benefitted while others have left out.

A common feeling amongst those asked is that of impotence: an inability to predict what 2012 will be like, uncertainty as to where to market their property, and a sense that the ‘old style’ tourism market has changed for ever.

With future tourists reporting a desire to ‘do something different’, to get ‘more for their money’, and “not just sit around on the beach” on their next holidays, the Face of Tourism is without doubt changing.

“Traditionally we have seen holiday property owners renting out their properties to what we would all recognise as ‘traditional tourism’: two weeks of sun, sea and sangria. Many have taken the time to furnish and equip their properties to enhance the holidays of these tourists, but with the changing face of tourism that we are expecting to see in 2012 that may not be enough to make your property stand out attract the more niche minded tourist” , Claus Pedersen, Founder Campaya.

The concept of Sustainable Tourism is not new with the World Tourism Organisation defining it as when development meets the needs of present tourists and host regions while protecting and enhancing opportunities for the future. Perhaps the most recognisable form of Sustainable Tourism to emerge in recent years is that of Cultural Tourism the subset of tourism concerned with a country or region’s culture, specifically the lifestyle of the people in those geographical areas, the history of those people, their art, architecture, religion(s), and other elements (Wikipedia)

Cultural Tourism gives visitors the opportunity to understand and appreciate the essential character of a place and it’s culture. A far cry from two weeks on the beach doing nothing, but a significant opportunity for the holiday property owner.

As Greg Richards said in his Tourism Research and Marketing paper when talking specifically about Cultural Tourism as an example of a successful development: “Culture and tourism were two of the major growth industries of the 20th century, and towards the end of the century the combination of these two sectors into ’cultural tourism’ had become one of the most desirable development options for countries and regions around the world.” Likewise Residential Tourism, a new term for many, which first started to achieve prominence online as far back as 2006.

At the time it was used generally to describe the thousands of families who moved away from their home country each year, but it quickly became the term used to describe second property owners who used the second property for a holiday.

Tempting as it may be to assume that this relates to foreign visitors, it in fact describes equally well those nationals who have a second property.

Take Spain for example. It is common place for a young Spaniard to purchase their first property in the location that they intend to spend their annual vacations and eventually retire. They will rent properties throughout their careers as and where their jobs take them, returning for public holidays, August, long weekends and the like to their second property.

These are as much a residential tourist as the British person who has bought their ‘holiday’ home in the sun for frequent visits throughout the year, and eventual retirement. Sustainable Tourism is generally grouped into three types of tourism (Green, Eco and Rural), and comprises:

  • Adventure
  • Nature
  • Religious
  • Educational
  • Sport
  • Health
  • Recreational
  • Residential
  • Cultural

Campaya have some advice for rental property owners for 2012:

1. Research where your property is located with a view to identifying the varying types of tourism it will attract.

2. Include the relevant keywords in the description for your property.

3. Consider the age profile of future tourists as those with the disposable income AND an interest in a specific niche are more likely to be the older generation (the Natural and Cultural Heritage Report predicts a decline in the under 50 age group and an increase in the over 50 age group by the year 2020)

4. Consider equipping your property with amenities and information relating to specific types of tourism.

Article taken from Travel Daily News. Read original version here.

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