Encouraging environmentally sustainable holiday travel

Susanne Böhler, Sylvie Grischkat, Sonja Haustein, Marcel Hunecke

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Holiday travel behavior, individual characteristics of holiday travelers and strategies to change holiday travel behavior are the subjects of this article. From the environmental perspective, the journey to the destinations is the most critical aspect of traveling. Based on a 2003 survey of 1991 German inhabitants, the kilometers traveled and the choice of transportation mode for holiday purposes have been quantified. According to the number of trips and kilometers traveled, four travel groups have been identified. The groups vary according to socio-demographics, psychological factors, number of holiday trips, and travel mode choice. Persons who traveled to more distant destinations also traveled more often and used air travel for more than 60% of their trips. For the other groups, car travel was more important. Correlating the four travel groups with greenhouse gas emissions reveals that the smallest group—the long-haul travelers—was responsible for 80% of the emissions of the whole sample. Income, education, and openness to change were main indicators of individual greenhouse gas emissions. Target group oriented strategies to reduce the environmental impact of holiday mobility are discussed against the background of 84 in-depth interviews conducted with selected representatives of the first survey.
Keyword: Conservation-ecological-behavior,Transportation,Environmental awareness,Greenhouse gas emission,Tourism; Holiday mobility
Original languageEnglish
JournalTransportation Research Part A
Issue number8
Pages (from-to)652-670
Publication statusPublished - 2006
Externally publishedYes


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