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Professional Profile of the eSilver Tourism Expert

Discovering the potential of silver tourism: insights from in-depth research

The eSilverTour team dived into the dynamic world of silver tourism and embarked on a journey to explore the current situation and uncover promising future horizons.

This in-depth research trip consists of two distinct blocks: the informative Needs Analysis and the insightful Desk Research.

All findings for the needs analysis stage have been extracted from questionnaires. 269 questionnaires have been collected in total (seniors – 152, 117 – tourism/active aging professionals) in order to have an overview of preferences referring to learning approaches, environments and type of learning activities and, on the other hand, to have a better understanding of expectations and motivations of senior tourists with regard to tourism, travelling and leisure, and deep understanding their current/potential use of ICTs at this regard.

Here are some of the key discoveries from our survey:

  • Would like to improve their hard skills in digital marketing, IT, and foreign languages as well as their soft skills in communication, management and capacity to motivate.
  • Are ready to follow training through an online course, face-to-face course, or blended course to get new competences and therefore to better address seniors’ expectations in the tourism industry.
  • Mentioned that marketing adaptations would be needed in infrastructure (economic and technical equipment) as well as in the creation and personalization of travels and destinations to propose offers tailored to senior citizens..
Senior tourists:
  • State that they were quite well connected and had access to digital communication tools and to general information.
  • Are comfortable with English language.
  • Are expecting trips and destinations that are adapted to their abilities and their preferences. Travel should be adapted to criteria like personal safety or helpful staff.
  • Travels should be easily accessible, mainly on the seaside with hotel or bed & breakfast offers but and with a variety of places to discover..

Moving beyond the questionnaire phase, our Desk Research unveiled a crucial insight into the senior population is remarkably diverse. Factors such as demographics, qualifications, interests, health, and financial capacity vary significantly. This diversity underscores the importance of tailoring tourist offerings to suit the unique needs of all seniors.

A bottom-up approach is also an important factor to consider, especially for dense and sizable tourism structures and institutions. It is important since this kind of approach decentralizes the power, as well as the responsibilities, and focuses on what senior tourists really need.

Our research culminates in key recommendations:

  • Diversify the offer, so that everyone can join (meet the financial, health possibilities and interests of the senior population).
  • Have a bottom-up approach, attending that way to the real needs of senior tourists.
  • Clear silver tourism statistical monitoring procedures and data.
  • Well-presented silver tourism offers good cases of visibility actions.
  • Silver tourism strategy with clear actions and financial resources allocated.

You can find the full document here: Professional Profile of the eSilver Tourism Expert (available in EN language)

This project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This communication (website) reflects the views only of the author and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.
Project: 2020-1-FR01-KA202-079845