By Alexis Papathanassis
Over the past a long time, mass-tourism and the emergence of the vacation package deal have reworked leisure shuttle from a "luxury for the few" to a 'commodity for the many'. The ever-increasing call for for individuality, enabled by way of info applied sciences and the net, has given upward push to various, rapidly-expanding vacation niches and a corresponding explosion of experts. The ensuing 'long tail' of vacation choices implies dramatic shifts within the sector's focus degrees and its aggressive dynamics. on the way to learn the applicability and validity of this situation, a couple of key vacation niches are tested when it comes to their call for improvement, provider landscapes, operational demanding situations and destiny capability.
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The ECEAT (European Centre for Ecological and Agricultural Tourism) is an association concerned with sustainable tourism on organic farms and was founded by polish farmers in the beginning of the early nineteenth century. It includes 138 farm tourism organisations in Germany, pan-Europe it lists around 1300 small-scale accommodations. ECEAT has members and partners in over 20 European countries. Those members have to meet the ECEATs sustainability criteria and need to be officially certified organic farmers.
In this context Nickerson and Bendix (1991) argued that there is a lack of information about both VFR travellers as such and their particular roles played in local tourism. Nevertheless some socio-economic groups have a larger tendency toward visiting friends and relatives. Asiedu uses four different variables when describing personal characteristics of VFR travellers: Age, education, occupational status and income. In the following, Asiedu's composition of different literature regarding the four influencing factors will be summarised: • Age: Studies in this field found out that most of VFR tourists belong to younger and middle age groups.
In this respect agro-tourism enjoys a sustainable differentiation advantage over masstourism. The target group of agro-tourism are middle-c1ass families with a medium income, and bigger households. In the future the target group of 50+, singles and couples without children will gain in importance. Overall, one can say that roughly 9 million people will be interested in agro-tourism. 75 million out of 9 million people could imagine to spend this holiday in Germany (Lorenz & Schiefer 2006). In order to create a competitlve advantage agro-tourism farms should try to meet customer needs by specialisation, for example specialising on families with small children and offering for them baby hotels containing childcare for very small children.