FOXTROTS

Fox – sly.  Trots – left-leaning (Trotsky) plus its more insalubrious meaning.

Foxtrots – leading the industry in a dance.

 

Phocuswright. Focus wrong on Spain.

US-based Phocuswright now researches not just online – where it became the world’s best – but all travel. Here, it is running into common problems of mis-interpretation and mis-definitions.

 

For instance, it says Spain is “now the third-most visited…destination”, then amplifies that “its total travel market is projected to climb 7% to reach [US$26bn, at US$1 to €0.90] by 2017”.

 

Our comments:

-Amplifying “visits” into a destination with a dollar figure makes little sense to travel professionals.

 

-“Total travel market” sounds like that – the total travel market, which would include outbound and domestic travel, and perhaps indirect revenues as well. But “visits” sounds like just the inbound market.

 

-We do not have our own data, but based on WTO data, inbound and outbound ‘revenue’ in Spain in 2015 was around US$72bn – almost three-times PCW’s total, excluding domestic travel and indirect revenue. Even inbound alone would be about US$56bn. Should PCW give some guidance when its figure is so different?

 

-“Now” indicates there has been a change. Yet Spain has been No3 in visitor counts after France (top) and US for the past 20 years.

 

-‘By 2017’ actually means 2016, this year, but we believe PCW means ‘in 2017’.

 

-PCW should know that revenue-per-traveller is probably a better measurement – one visitor staying one day and spending US$100 is less valuable that one staying 30 days and spending US$2500. On that measure, for those ‘top-3’ destinations, we calculate that each visitor in France spends US$685, in the US US$2363, in Spain US$1001. Look wider, and there are quirks – Macau, thanks to gambling (a legitimate visitor spend), gets US$3479 per visitor.

 

If PCW wants to match its reputation in online research in overall travel research, it needs to learn more, fast.

 

 

The Fox

Remember, I’ll be famous after I’m dead.