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Emerging tourism futures: residential tourism and its implications

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posted on 27.04.2010, 15:20 by Karen OReilly
North Europeans, particularly the British and Germans, have been migrating to Spain’s coastal towns in increasing numbers since the 1980s. They have been attracted by the weather, the (especially relative) cost of living, and the pace of life. They are aided by portable pensions and the increase in expendable wealth experienced by some northern Europeans in recent decades. And the migration or mobility is eased by the existence and development of reasonably-priced and regular transport routes, cheap airlines, and a good local infrastructure that was developed initially for tourism. Key areas of North European settlement in Spain are the Costa Blanca, the Costa del Sol, Mallorca and the Canary Islands. These “immigrants” now form a large minority group. Officially, the largest groups of migrants in Spain are Moroccans (500,000), followed by Colombians, Ecuadorians, Romanians, then migrants from the United Kingdom (220,000), followed by Germans (120,000). However, it is almost certain that these figures, from the Spanish Institute of National Statistics, seriously underestimate the actual numbers of settled or partly-settled European migrants. Several experts have estimated (and our own survey confirms) that only about one in three settled UK migrants actually register as resident at their local town hall.



  • Social Sciences


  • Communication, Media, Social and Policy Studies


O'REILLY, K., 2007. Emerging tourism futures: residential tourism and its implications. IN: Geoffroy, C. and Sibley, R. (eds.). Going Abroad: Travel, Tourism, and Migration. Cross-Cultural Perspectives on Mobility. Newcastle upon Tyne : Cambridge Scholars Publishing, pp.144-157.


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