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Euro Travellers More Environmentally Conscious

April 9, 2014 Corporate No Comments Email Email

European travellers into Australia are more likely to support voluntary carbon off-setting measures than their Asian counterparts, a new study has revealed.

Collaborative research involving the Griffith Institute for Tourism and Tourism Research Australia suggests more knowledge about Asian attitudes towards sustainability is required to optimise support for voluntary carbon off-setting practices among this most crucial inbound market sector. unnamed (3)

“There is a definitive gap between European and Asian country attitudes towards carbon off-setting travel habits,” confirmed Dr Char-Lee McLennan.

“There is greater prevalence of this trend among the more mature European and United Kingdom markets as opposed to the emerging growth markets of Asia.

“A better informed population that is more readily exposed to social marketing and media coverage of the issues relating to our carbon footprint are more likely to be supportive of carbon off-setting initiatives.

“Australia’s geographic proximity to the growth markets of Asia dictates that more work needs to be done in this area.”

Dr McLennan believes further research on Asian travellers’ environmental perceptions and behaviours, and how these perceptions are developed, is important.

Voluntary carbon-offsetting was popularised during the last decade, particularly by airlines, as a tool to ‘neutralise’ emissions associated with travel.

“Overall support of voluntary carbon off-setting schemes is still quite low among inbound travellers,” she said.

“However there is evidence to suggest a stable market for carbon off-setting is being established. This will be of particular interest to companies looking to tap into the environmentally conscious traveller market.”

The research, based on data collected between 2008 and 2010, also provides key demographic characteristics and travel trends of those people more likely to make voluntary payments to offset their carbon emissions.

The research raises important questions with respect to tourists’ sustainable travel behaviour and those who engage in it, with the findings indicating that social marketing and the stage of economic development in a country could influence visitors’ sustainable behaviour and mitigation activities.

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