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Types of tourist. Why is it difficult to find a concept that fits all kinds of tourists?

Essay 2013 10 Seiten

Touristik / Tourismus


Tourist types and roles

The idea and the definition of tourist and tourism have been implicitly indicated in a particular article of Cohen, 1974. Tourism is just travelling or getting around for mental refreshment, leisure, recreation, business purposes etc. So, tourists can be defined by saying about the people who are travelling around and living moveable in the places, apart from their usual environment, for recreational, leisure, business activity and so on. (Cohen, 1974).

In the same article the author attempted to represent and successfully demonstrated the replication of various types of tourist and tourist’s role. In order to do that, Cohen gleaned few elements from various definitions quoted and added own as well. Cohen specified clearly the various significant dimensions of the nature of tourists. In order to indicate this manner Cohen provided explanation of the types of travelers.

Temporary travelers: The tourists ‘…who are temporary travelers, possessing a fixed place of abode,’ (Cohen, 1974) … which is one’s permanent place even in time of the trip; that circumstance differentiate that tourist from the nomad, wanderer or trump and the other types of stable travelers. On the other hand, the people who are visiting in a remarkable or inexperienced state, the role which they can take up just once in a while or even very rarely, for this kind of travelers it is completely a way of touring life. (Cohen, 1974)…. ‘… How long - or how short - such a temporary state of traveling has to be for the travelers to become a tourist…..’ which is one of the different elements of fuzziness in the idea of tourist to deal with the other types. (Cohen, 1974).

Voluntary travelers: The travelers who travel on the tours of their own free will, who are able to finish their own visit according to the satisfactions and free to come back own permanent area they could be classified as voluntary travelers. The specific situation what could be distinguished between voluntary and involuntary or forced travelers, are for instance, exile, the refugee, the prisoners of war, etc. (Cohen, 1974).

Round-trippy: So the travelers who are planning for the same starting point and the finishing point, this type of travelers are in this category. Cohen, 1974, “this circumstance differentiates him from the emigrant, who moves on a one way trip from one permanent abode to another.” Although the variety among the single journey and the return journey to be fairly close, so therefore, it can be said that here the fuzziness arises again. That is how the different degrees of temporary and permanency arises; in which people change house from their fixed place to other destination. (Cohen, 1974).

Long journey category tourist: The tourists who are on a relatively longer journey then the tourists with the shorter journey, is classified too. This kind of situation characterizes the tourists from the one day tripper or someone just mere tourist. But generally it is not easy to fixed and specifies how long surly a trip must have to be, which depends on different kinds of circumstances, such as culture is a clear fact, nature of the journey, characteristics of the travelers etc. (Cohen, 1974).

Non recurrence of a trip: The travelers who are not on repeating of their trip on purpose they are classified in this category. He or she, who makes this kind of trip rarely, rather than on a trip which one can be nominated on the regular basis and to which he or she would become accustomed,. This individual situation distinguishes the tourists from the weekend house owners. This is “… however, is a continuous variable and hence the boundaries between what are recurrent and what are not …” is clearly definable. (Cohen, 1974).

Non instrumental: The purpose of the travelers is able to classify the non-instrumental type tourism. This kind of tours has an end, but the trips are without any specific purpose like as business, appointment, travelling salesman, international representatives, political, religious purpose etc. (Cohen, 1974).

What other roles can be postulated as similar to that of a tourist? What roles are complementary or paired with the tourist?

Now I would like to demonstrate shortly the different roles of tourists which have been directly found in the article of Cohen, 1974. Moreover, by this short description it would be cleared, there are some tourist roles which are paired with the type of tourists. It has been described above very briefly about the different types of tourists; the roles of the tourists are similarly reflected to the types too.

Permanency: As tourist is a temporary traveler to a new place where he or she tries to adapt or get to know the different things like navigation in every aspect by staying in the hotel or some other accommodation by accepting that as a temporary house. But the question is what the limitations of this type of temporariness are. It is found and described as a difficult task to determine the duration of staying. But more or less, a tourist needs to spend at least a full day after crossing a long distance or an international boundary. (Cohen, 1974).

Voluntariness: The dimension of this is in the context of discussion, which has been presented as clearer than the other dimensions. Since the tourists have been considered as travelers; those who are neither forced politically, economically, religious wise nor bound to live or stay in a particular area they are volunteering the society in many perspectives. (Cohen, 1974)

Direction: The differences between a return journey and a one way journey could be clearly justified and easily separated. Moreover, there are many types of travelers who hang around in their host countries obviously either to become permanent or go back their country of origin. So therefore, there is once again the fuzziness comes up into this dimension. (Cohen, 1974).

Distance of the trip: In order to certify or classify as tourism, the journey preferred to be comparatively longer. This is again mentioned as an unclear, in terms of how longer it should be. According to the analysis it has been determined “… contextually, by taking into account the previous experience of the travelers or the norms of a society or a social group …” Thence, in many places traditionally the short trips would be classified as tourism. (Cohen, 1974). It could be more cleared by an example of a small country and a big country. In a small country like Cyprus, it is classified as a tour when people go to one district to another, which is only half an hour to forty five minutes driving distance. Whereas, in many other bigger countries travelling to a short distance like this, is not considered as a tour. Its again differ from man to man, purpose to purpose etc.

Recurrence: Again, the recurrent trips are facts when it is significant to justify the roles of the tourists. There are so many travelers who do journeys very often or routine wise. Those activities cannot be classified as a dimension of a tourist role. Because, that kind of travelling cannot offer a recreation, whereas, this is a kind of bound to an economic, political or as a part of duty. (Cohen, 1974).

Purpose of Trip: As it has already been classified tourism as making journey for non- instrumental intentions, precisely along with the wishing of joy in order to be free from the daily routine work.



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Universitetet i Stavanger




Titel: Types of tourist. Why is it difficult to find a concept that fits all kinds of tourists?