Commentary: The View from Europe: Who owns tourism?

David Jessop is a consultant to the Caribbean Council and can be contacted at Previous columns can be found at

By David Jessop

You will not find the word ‘over tourism’ in the Oxford English Dictionary. Despite this it is being used increasingly by tourism professionals around the world. It describes the experience of residents in locations where large numbers of visitors are seriously disrupting local lives, causing environmental damage, placing an unacceptable burden on local infrastructure, or making housing unaffordable.

Although scarcely mentioned publicly until recently, the implications of ‘over tourism’ have begun to be debated in cities from Barcelona to Venice, in relatively remote destinations…

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