How Diverse are Tourists with Disabilities? A Pilot Study on Accessible Leisure Tourism Experiences in Portugal

Authors

  • Elisabete Figueiredo,

    Corresponding author
    • Department of Social, Legal and Political Sciences. GOVCOPP – Research Unit on Governance, Competitiveness and Public Policies, University of Aveiro, Campus Universitário de Santiago, Aveiro, Portugal
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  • Celeste Eusébio,

    1. Department of Economics, Management and Industrial Engineering. GOVCOPP – Research Unit on Governance, Competitiveness and Public Policies, University of Aveiro, Campus Universitário de Santiago, Aveiro, Portugal
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  • Elisabeth Kastenholz

    1. Department of Economics, Management and Industrial Engineering. GOVCOPP – Research Unit on Governance, Competitiveness and Public Policies, University of Aveiro, Campus Universitário de Santiago, Aveiro, Portugal
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Elisabete Figueiredo, Department of Social, Legal and Political Sciences. GOVCOPP – Research Unit on Governance, Competitiveness and Public Policies. University of Aveiro, Campus Universitário de Santiago, 3810-193 Aveiro, Portugal.

E-mail: elisa@ua.pt

ABSTRACT

Literature dealing with tourism and disability mostly stresses the frequent exclusion of impaired persons and emphasizes the benefits associated with tourism activities, neglecting the diversity of impairments. This paper takes a different approach, by analyzing the diverse forms of being disabled, meaning different abilities to participate in tourism and diverse capabilities of experiencing leisure activities. An exploratory survey directed to 200 persons with disabilities was undertaken in Portugal. Market segmentation was based on the commonly defined types of impairment: intellectual, motor, hearing and visual. Evidence suggests statistical differences among segments regarding travel behavior, motivations, interests and needs, motivated by diverse types of disabilities. Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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