Sustainable tourism is expanding in Tuscany, Italy. Numbers, turnover, revenue, jobs – this sector is growing all around. Moreover, the offer is improving as well.
Local tour operators increased their offer, aiming to satisfy the demand not only for amusement, art, and the most renowned sights. There is a strong demand for niche products that respect both the region and the environment. The tour operators state that tourists require more social interaction, seek safety and wellbeing, and even look for less crowded periods of the year to enjoy Tuscany.
2014 was a positive year for tourism in Tuscany, which represented 6% of the GDP and 10% of the total generated work, unlike the rest of Italy. According to Irpet, while the number of tourists in Italy decreased by 1.5%, in Tuscany there was a rise of 1.2%. Between 2009 and 2014 the tourist industry in Tuscany generated 6,500 new jobs – especially in the extra-hotel sector (farms, apartments, rooms for rent) recording a 1.5% increase.
According to Centro Studi Turistici (CST), which conducted an estimate for Toscana Promozione, in the first five months of 2015 Tuscany recorded 4.1 million arrivals (plus 2.8%) and 10.9 million presences (plus 3.2%), 358,000 more people and 113,000 more arrivals than in 2014.
This increase comes mostly from foreign tourism with +6.2% of overnight stays (for a total of 55.7% of the market share) while domestic stays decreased by 0.4% (44.3% of the total market share.)
Such trend was also confirmed in the summertime when, according to CST, Tuscany saw its best results in years, with 3.6% more in overnight stays (800,000 more people) compared to the same period last year.
Foreign tourists played a major role (+3.9%) but also Italians increased their numbers by 3.2%. Excellent results also come for compartments related to sustainable tourism like apartments and farm holidays which grew by 2.9 and 4.2% respectively. Last but not least, mountain tourism saw a 3.2% increase in domestic demand and a 4.9% increase in demand from foreigners.