German holiday transport patterns: Insights for climate policy

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Transport accounts for an estimated 23% of energy-related global CO2 emissions, a large share of this for leisure and tourism purposes. Despite national and sector-specific pledges to reduce global emissions of greenhouse gases, there are no consistent policies for the transport sector, which is characterized by continued strong growth. Against this background, this paper investigates holiday travel patterns of one of the most important tourism markets worldwide, Germany, based on data from annual travel surveys (‘Reiseanalyse’, with n = ∼7500). Data on trip numbers, transport modes and travel distances are evaluated, indicating that emissions of greenhouse gases related to holiday travel (including trips lasting 5 days and longer) are significant at an average 320 kg CO2 per trip and person. Findings also show that the distribution of holiday travel emissions is highly skewed among the population and heavily depending on trip type. While about a quarter of the population does not participate in holiday travel at all, a small, highly mobile and wealthier share of travellers, 4% of the German population, engages in five or more holiday trips per year. These travellers are also more likely to participate in the most carbon-intense trips, long-haul flights and cruises, which generate 2 t CO2 and more per trip. Findings are discussed in the context of national climate policy.
ZeitschriftCase Studies on Transport Policy
Seiten (von - bis)596-603
Anzahl der Seiten8
PublikationsstatusErschienen - 2017