Tourism At What Cost?
"Attracted by noir detective series and fashionable cuisine, nine million tourists last year visited this city [Copenhagen], a record for Denmark, which has fewer than six million people." -Elizabeth Becker, ex-NY times journalist
Elizabeth Becker is the author of the book "OVERBOOKED", an exposé on the travel industry that came out in 2016. The quote is from her New York Times Article, “The Revolt Against Tourism.”
"Imagine – more tourists than residents!" -The New York Times
"The permanent population of Venice is less than the number of tourists that flock to the city each day!" -The Local
In Venice, “the tourists have actually contributed to more than 100,000 residents abandoning the city: the resident population has gone from 175,000 registered post WWII to around 55,000 today." -The Guardian
Not to mention the Cinque Terre, where 2.5 million visitors in 2016 placed the enormously popular location in Liguria at risk and other precious heritage sites throughout Italy where local governments are thinking of limiting the number of visitors.
So, back to the question: Tourism at what costs?
Is it really feasible to sell tickets to enter cities or famous piazzas like San Marco’s?
Divertimento Group sees travel agencies and consultants as playing a key role in urging tourists to visit hot-spot locations off-season or avoid them altogether. Of course, no one is asking “first-timers” to bypass Rome, Florence, or Venice – but many Italy enthusiasts have seen the “standards” numerous times and would be willing to visit off-the-beaten track, spectacular hot-spot alternatives.
Once you have established a relationship with your clients based on trust and respect for your expertise – some great photos and a few testimonials from ecstatic clients are sufficient to get them to explore a place they have never even heard of.
When it comes to enticing photos, Italy sells itself.
We invite travel professionals to join us in our STOP Overtourism Movement.
We will provide spectacular photos, visitor reviews, extensive destination profiles/background history and carefully planned itineraries that will help promote our less crowded, lesser-known, truly out-of-the- ordinary Alternative Cultural Adventures. We will help encourage experienced Italian travelers to #RethinkItalianTravel – to leave celebrate life and leave their comfort zone at home!®
Leading the STOP Overtourism Movement with travel professionals everywhere…