Written by: Williamson, Hollie
In response to the discussions around gender travels this paper is to explore the problems and treatment women face on party holidays. A discussion was formed on several topics and a questionnaire was done to receive thoughts and opinions on those affected by this topic.
Party holidays, Alcotourism, Women, Harassment, Unacceptable Behavior, Unacceptable Treatment
This study has been developed to look at the treatment women face on party holidays. Each year reports come to light on the unacceptable treatment women are facing on party holidays. These stories that women are more than ever still receiving harassment, abuse and in a way that is unacceptable.
Party holidays have been a product on offer for years and enjoyed by both males and females of all ages. There is a vast number of party holidays on offer but this study focuses on the 18-30 category. With a rapid growth of party holidays and destinations on offer now, this has brought problems for the individuals visiting also for the destinations. A new form of tourism has been created called Alcotourism, this type of tourism works alongside drinking and party holidays. Alcotourism comes when people travel to drink, drink while on holiday and also drinking while travelling (Bell, 2008). The behaviour that stems from intoxication and drug use on party holidays brings many problems. International holiday resorts targeted at youth, feature many high risks for violence due to the mass of bars and nightclubs on offer also due to high levels and use of substance (Hughes, et al., 2008). The growth of these holidays have rose through the growth of lost cost airlines and binge drinking (Bell, 2008).
This conference paper’s main exploration is to understand and discuss the treatment women face on party holidays. Research shows that one in ten British women have been sexually harassed or assaulted on holiday. As a destination changes and grows what stays the same is the treatment women face. There is such a vast amount of unacceptable behaviour that women are facing on party holidays. This paper took on a research project in the form of a questionnaire. This was created and completed due to the lack of research on offer, so independent research was conducted to gain a further understanding on women’s thoughts and feelings on this topic. The questionnaire was posted online to gain a wide range of responses. This paper has given women a chance to speak out about their experiences on this topic and share their stories.
Ethics were highly taken into consideration due to the sensitivity of this topic. Permission for this study was approved by the University of Lincoln and participants were briefed before conduction the questionnaire.
The research conducted gave several different discussions to explore. Firstly an understanding on the participants was discovered, the main age of this research falls into the ages of 18-30 which correlates alongside the study of 18-30 holidays. A vast amount of destinations get visited throughout the year, these are destinations that advertise themselves as party destinations.
The next section of research explores whether the women in this study have ever felt at risk on party holidays. 18 out of the 32 participants interviewed shared that they have felt at risk on party holidays. Participants were asked to share experiences where they felt at risk. Several shared experiences that they were encouraged to get black out intoxicated, that they know of people of getting spiked. Developments in this research has shown that holiday reps are encouraged to get younger guests mainly girls at an inappropriate level of intoxication (Kelly, et al., 2014). All participants shared that they’ve been approached inappropriately by bar staff and men.
Participants were asked to share if they’d experienced different types on unacceptable behaviour. Several stories were gathered including where a participant had her breasts groped, another where because a male brought her a drink believed she was his property. Reports have shown that there is countless rapes and sexual assaults on party holidays mainly always fueled by alcohol (Nicholas, 2008).
27 respondants shared stories on how men are treated differently to them, stories shared that gown men believe it is ok to be inappropriate towards young girls. The participants explained different stories such as that girls ae seen as sexual conquests whereas men can enjoy their holidyas without being objectified. Mainly through fault of club 18-30 reps who encourage women to get intoxicated and take part in sex games for the pleasure of men.
Each participant shared that when an unacceptable act happens against them is mainly brushed off as they were drunk or they just expect it to happen to them, this is not acceptable and needs to be changed.
Overall the research from this conference paper has discovered worrying problems with the treatment women face on party holidays, experiences women are facing are happening more and more and nothing is being done. Recommendations can be that regulations need to be put in place to protect women from this unacceptable behaviour they facing from men. Regulations need to be put in place with reps, bar staff and holiday workers abroad to change how they behave to protect the safety of women.
Bell, D. (2008). Destination drinking: Toward a research agenda on Alco tourism. Drugs: Education, Prevention and Policy, 15(3), pp.291-304.
Hughes, K., Bellis, M., Calafat, A., Juan, M., Schnitzer, S. and Anderson, Z. (2008). Predictors of violence in young tourists: a comparative study of British, German and Spanish holidaymakers. The European Journal of Public Health, 18(6), pp.569-574.
Kelly, D., Hughes, K. and Bellis, M. (2014). Work Hard, Party Harder: Drug Use and Sexual Behaviour in Young British Casual Workers in Ibiza, Spain. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 11(10), pp.10051-10061.
I have decided to comment on this discussion paper even considering the fact that it has a very different theme to what I explored within my conference. The author has discussed many different factors about the treatment females in clubbing destinations and has included the problems in which they face. I found this topic very interesting, relatable and I reckon that the majority of females I know would agree when I say that problems like this will happen all the time when visiting clubbing locations.
The author has established that clubbing holidays are great fun with friends and enables one to relax. Destinations such as Ibiza, Kavos, Zante all have beautiful beaches with the most amazing sunshine so tourists can relax all day and then party all night. Considering the partying aspect, it is vital that people always feel safe on a clubbing holiday no matter who they are (i.e. race, gender, age). By doing this allows them to have the best holiday experience (Houghton-Bird, 2013).
The paper additionally discusses the many dangers on clubbing holidays. It mentions how women are often seen as a “target” for men on these types’ holidays because of their drunken state, to which it is has been found that the female is always blamed for. These accusations can include “drinking too much” or the typical term “she was asking for it”, which always refers to how much or how little clothing the women are wearing. A woman should be allowed to dress how she pleases without having to suffer consequences for it, just like men are allowed to do the same. In destinations such as Ibiza, many women are warned to not walk home alone or with someone they don’t trust and to also keep an eye on their drinks. This is due to all the assaults taking place; recent studies show that 110 British citizens have reported sexual assaults in the last two years. This figure is expected to be more due to many stories being unreported (Schneider, 2014).
Following on from this information, it has been found that sexual harassment doesn’t happen just among tourists abroad, it can also happen within the UK with alcohol being another factor involved. According to recent studies, 79% of women on a night out say that they expect some form of a harassment due to its regular occurrence. As it has been established that alcohol is the key factor within these two arguments, people think that being drunk is the problem and that it is an open invitation for strangers to grab, grope or make sexual comments to you (Vaughan, 2017).
The author states that the safety of women abroad is vital. By being sensible, keeping an eye on one another and not talking to strangers will lower the risk of something happening on a night out (Houghton-Bird, 2013). Actions speak louder than words however, and I agree that it’s important to get the message of being safe across to many people but, like the author says, if nothing is being done about it then women are still going to be at risk when on holiday.
Houghton-Bird, A. (2013). Tips and Advice: Staying Safe on a Clubbing Holiday - Thomas Cook Blog. [online] Thomas Cook. Available at: https://www.thomascook.com/blog/featured-posts/staying-safe-on-a-clubbing-holiday
/ [Accessed 16 May 2018].
Schneider, K. (2014). The outrageous truth about Ibiza. [online] News.com.au. Available at: http://www.news.com.au/travel/world-travel/europe/ibiza-the-truth-about-the-spanish-party-island/news-story/fd469b8fc40adb734584e61c83d9f536
[Accessed 16 May 2018].
Vaughan, H. (2017). Almost three-quarters of young people 'have witnessed sexual harassment on a night out'. The Independent. [online] Available at: https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/sexual-harassment-poll-yougov-young-people-night-out-a7972991.html
[Accessed 16 May 2018].