Attack of the Tourons

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If that’s all people came for, they should install some markers at the bottom to free up space for other people.

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Mayor of Athens says tourism in Greece isn’t ‘viable’ anymore as each visitor only adds €0.40 to the economy

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Ok, so because I’ve seen some movement about how violent we are and that, I think is time for another “tourism is hurting my city” post. Again, sorry for posting local news in catalan (but is the only thrustworthy source for this info), will provide summary.

Between 3k and 20k people marched through the city in a protest agains the “touristification” of the city. Main complains are noise, the catering of commerce to tourists harming locals, and the unaffordable housing prices due to competition with tourists (why rent a flat to a local for 1k/month when you can hire it to tourists for 120/night?). They demand the end of fiscal exemptions for tourist accomodations (they mean hotels, not airbnbs) and to stop founding tourism friendly events with public funds.

The city council has changed the emergency housing protocol for families that were in risk of becoming homeless so it only lasts 6 months. Applied retroactively, it means freeing some beds that can be rent to tourists.

Locals are wary of the impact of the Copa America for them. Some think they will probably have to temporarily relocate to keep doing their usual things, some stores complain that because the event is held in high season they will lose sales (ie: boat rental stores), obviously bar and restaurant owners are super happy about it.

Local School PA asks the city council not to close again the park for commercial events because it caused disruptions to the school and neighbours due to hostile police presence and blocks.


Main issue is that the school is literally inside the park so any event of that style is going to be disruptive. Also neighbours use the public part of the park (they used to have all the park but you know, TOURISTS) to walk and excercise.

The fashion show had a protest that was violently repressed by the police.

While smaller, there was also an organized protest against the F1 exhibition that for most political parties was considered “sending the wrong message”. Indeed, if we’re trying to curb emissions to comply with EU norms about air quality, maybe we should have organized a Formula Electric exhibition!

Anyway, I’ll stop ranting here. I’ll be happy when summer ends.

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I could not have said it better. It’s good to see some newspapers trying to explain the why instead of blindly condemning the protests

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Tourism seems both disruptive and destructive for local communities. Or perhaps it is unfettered tourism and municipalities and countries encouraging that excessive tourism in ways that screw everyone who lives there. The excuse was always the money it brings in- but it sounds like that was just some capitalist fiction.

I’ve long wished to visit Barcelona but it sounds like a really unpleasant experience right now. The point would be to see the sights and experience the culture. Impossible right now. Better to visit some place specifically designed for tourists or just see the local attractions.

In addition to the many and varied costs to locals, there is also the cost to the environment. How much carbon and plastic waste does unfettered tourism cost us?

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as I mentioned several times, I don’t post this to discourage people from visiting barcelona, but to change the way you visit Barcelona.

Like I would prefer if you will decide to come in low season instead of high season, or stay at a hotel instead of an airbnb, or avoid the worst affected parts, or maybe you will befriend some locals before coming to visit the city. That is my objective, not “please don’t come to the city”. We probably need more people like the ones that comment on this thread and less entitled tourons :laughing:

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That’s definitely the way I’d like to visit. Friends in the city is ideal. I’d be happy with a nice hotel in the off-season, research to avoid any sights or events that are disruptive to the locals as well as tourist traps. Plus just basic respect and civility. Same as I would in my own city. Barcelona sounds like a lovely city when it isn’t overrun with tourists. The bit about the park really bothers me. Especially with the school the middle of it!

I do not get the appeal of airbnb for short term stays. My in-laws love them even when a good hotel is both available and cheaper. It makes sense for some areas but definitely not cities. Right now, they have all the grandkids, 2 aunts and an uncle sharing two Airbnbs in Glen Rose Texas for a week. Beautiful area, great state park nearby. But no hotels, much less nice ones. It makes sense there.

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When I went to canada with my family we stayed a couple nights in an airbnb for a town that had not much in hotels to choose, and we chose it mainly because it was clearly stated that we would share space with the host (the room had a kitchenette if you wanted to keep to yourself, but the common area was funnier). It turned out to be a great decision, as the host was the bohemian well travelled guy who basically did airbnb to keep meeting new people. My mother used him to practice french (which did us good as we found few english speakers in the gaspesie) and he used us to practice spanish. 100 out of 5 that is the way. We kept contact for a couple years via facebook until I closed my account.

Unfortunately what I see is people just using airbnb to bypass city hotel regulations, and that is what really hurts everyone.

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I had completely forgotten there were airbnbs with the owner there to host. My experiences are all with my inlaws and they don’t ever choose that option. We don’t travel a lot on our own, and when we do it’s to family or we get a hotel room. We need a place to sleep, shower, and keep our stuff.
Just a regular bnb sounds nice too.

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To each is own I guess :laughing: I have to admit I was a bit aprehensive about meeting a complete stranger, but I though worst case scenario we could just keep to ourselves, and it was only a couple days (lots of empty space between quebec and gaspé).

It was the correct choice, but I can totally understand not everyone vibing to the idea :grin:

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We always like to rent a vacation home if we’re staying a week or longer in one location. It saves us money because we can make our own breakfast and lunch (and a couple of dinners). We also like taking fewer clothes and using the w/d and we like that we don’t have to bother with housekeeping.

Our last trip back east was in February when we drove from Niagara Falls to Maine. We stayed in a mix of smaller inns and corporate hotels. It was a lot of fun and we got a lot of helpful advice from the locals. One of our stops was in Cooperstown and everyone was telling us that we should come back during high season. “The town is so alive and full of baseball fans.” No thanks. We enjoyed walking through the Hall of Fame, going slow and taking it all in. Never felt rushed and we noticed that the very few other visitors were mostly from Japan. They definitely made the wise decision to visit off-peak. :grinning:

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Maybe I should have defined my terms better! More than a week plus more than 3 ppl and the vacation house rental makes sense. Especially if you are visiting a place where you don’t want to eat out at every opportunity. A washer and dryer are also convenient.
Though I’d still be concerned about the impact on local housing in places where Airbnbs and vacation home rents are unregulated. Or maybe I’m just sour about the 2 page check-out chores list at the last place I stayed.

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I remember a rental like that in Key West in the late 90s/early aughts. :smiley: There were five of us splitting up the chores and running around cleaning, doing dishes, and washing sheets. Just hire a crew!

We found an inexpensive place where we’ve rented twice and their property management company gives you almost zero chores (empty the trash). They have a cleaning crew that goes in at 10 a.m. (checkout) and they get everything done by 4 p.m. It’s wonderful!

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Why climb a mountain with a crowd at the top?

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