I was privileged last Thursday to be asked to address the industry in Catalonia about what Responsible Tourism means for Barcelona. Next week in Barcelona we are holding the 7th International Conference on Responsible Tourism in Destinations and we shall briefly have the opportunity to engage in the debate during the conference next week.
A tourism tax was introduced in Barcelona in November last year, it is a small amount per night – for a 5* property it is €2.25 for others it can be as little as €0.45. I understand that two thirds of the revenues is used for promotion.
The debate is hotting up. How many more tourists does Barcelona want to attract? How many can it attract before it is spoilt?
Of those who stayed to listen to what I had to say last week perhaps two thirds appeared to be relieved that the question was being asked. Some of course were less than pleased – many in the industry are in denial that tourism is bringing economic, social and environmental pollution. It has to be managed.
Next week we shall be addressing the challenges of tourism in Barcelona and engaging in the debate.
I am looking forward to it.
You can view the PowerPoint I presented in Barcelona on 26th September and listen to what I said