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Out of the north…

13 September 2008

Looks like more still more foreigners are expected to stay:

Edmunton Journal (7-September 2008 ):

Mexico was named the world’s top retirement destination in an annual look at global retirement trends in International Living Magazine.

The magazine released its 15th annual retirement index and rated Mexico highly for its affordable combination of modern features and old-world charm, health, climate, infrastructure and cost of living.

Mexico is home to close to 700,000 U.S. and Canadian citizens who exchanged urban busyness, frigid temperatures and higher living costs for a more relaxed, warmer and inexpensive lifestyle.

And, Mexico is looking at expanding niche markets within the tourism sector:

Sherice Sánchez, Excelsior (my translation):

Implementing strategies to target services towards gay couples, and to concentrate on the special needs of these tourists would make Mexico one of the best tourist destinations for the coveted lesbian and gay market.

According to Thomas Roth, president of Community Marketing, Inc., lesbian and gay couples from the United States spend about 64.5 billion dollars a year on travel. This is an extremely attractive market for Mexico, which earns about 13 billion dollars per year from international tourists.

During his presentation at the Sixth Annual Mexican Tourism Leadership Forum, Roth indicated that in our country only there are two destinations mentioned by gay couples, though the country has other attractions that would be of extreme interest to this market.

“Puerta Vallarta holds second place among the preference for international gay and lesbian travel world-wide, while Cancún is in eighth place. It is odd that Mexico City does not rank, despite its diversity, which suggests to us that it could do more to attract this sector of the tourist population,” he said.

Based on Report 2007 on Lesbian/Gay Tourism, the speaker explained that gay couples, or those that travel in groups or pairs have a higher disposable income to spend on travel than other niche markets of international travelers.

Because most lesbian and gay tourists do not have children, those that travel regulary can afford to take up to six trips a year.

“Normally three are for vacations, two are visits to friend or relatives, and one is business related. On each trip, tourists in this sector spend an average of six thousand dollars, which annually works out to 36 thousand dollars on travel.”

No word on the wealthy gay retiree market, though it is out there.

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