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Active sport tourists: Millennials vs baby boomers

Ruth IJspeert, Ramon Llull University, Spain, Gilda Hernandez-Maskivker, Ramon Llull University, Spain
Published online: 30 May 2020, JTHSM, 6(2), pp.12-20.

URN: urn:nbn:de:0168-ssoar-67857-6, DOI: 10.5281/zenodo.3835813

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IJspeert, R., & Hernandez-Maskivker, G. (2020). Active sport tourists: Millennials vs Baby boomers. Journal of Tourism, Heritage & Services Marketing, 6(2), 12–20. https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.3835813

Active Sport Tourists: Millennials vs Baby Boomers


Purpose: Active sport tourism is one of the fastest rising leisure segments. Considering the extensive growth of both the millennial and baby boomers generation in this sector, there are large-scale economic potentials for tourism practitioners. The aim of this study is to explore the characterics of baby boomers and millennial active sport tourists and to differentiate them by relevant factors.

Methods: Applying a qualitative research design numerical data is collected by using online surveys about the characteristics, needs and motivations of baby boomer and millennial active sport tourists.

Results: Significant differences were found between the groups regarding social-economic characteristics (gender, education level, marital status and income) and motivations. For millennials, ‘Escaping from daily routine’’, ‘Thrill & sensation’, ‘Overcoming challenges’ and ‘Adrenalin’ appeared as relevant motivations. For baby boomers, ‘Health’ highlights as a principal motivation. Recommendations for professionals in the sector are suggested.

Implications: Current study was considered to be important due to an extensive growth seen for both the millennial and baby boomers generation in the active sport tourism market and considering the fact that limited understanding of the characteristics, needs and motives was contradicting this enormous growth in the market. Differences were found between the millennial and the baby boomer active sport tourists.

Keywords: sport tourism, millennials, baby boomers, consumer behavior, leisure tourism

JEL Classification: L83, L8, Z20

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