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Reasons for moving to Spain's Costa Blanca: a comparison between British and German retired migrants

By Raquel Huete and Tomás Mazón Martínez

Abstract

Comunicación presentada en First ISA World Forum, Barcelona, September 5-8, 2008.Over the last decades, the Costa Blanca (province of Alicante, Spain), has become one of the most appealing regions for retired people within the European Union. The onset of this flow of immigrants dates back to the 1960s, and it started a phenomenon (International Retirement Migration) that had been almost non-existent until then. The aim of this paper is to explore the main reasons why European citizens, mostly British and German, want to move to and settle in the coastal areas of southern Spain. The climate is obviously the main appeal. However, there are other variables associated with the environment, like the landscape, and above all, there is a lifestyle in which outdoor activities and sociability are essential. Thus, the socio-cultural aspects define the quality of life, and become a pull factor as important as the geographical and economic conditions of the destination. The results from both qualitative and quantitative research are presented. We conducted 10 in-depth interviews, as well as a personal in-home survey with a sample of 637 interviews. We put forward two lifestyle models: one has the characteristics of permanent migration, the other shapes a transnational citizenship. We have also found significant differences in the residential patterns of citizens from different countries

Topics: Tourism, Lifestyle migration, Motivation, Residential tourism, Sociología
Year: 2008
OAI identifier: oai:rua.ua.es:10045/14089

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