ETHICAL TRAVEL - HOLIDAYING TO FIGHT THE MAFIA


Francesca Forno & Roberta Garibaldi

addiopizzotravel.pngA brand-new role for consumers in the tourism market has emerged from various trends: firstly, there is a desire for different and more ‘exciting’ holidays; secondly, there is growing awareness of the negative (or positive) impacts that tourism may have on host communities by sourcing products, and this in terms of both environmental protection and income for families living in the area; thirdly, by facilitating the encounter of like-minded people, new information technologies and online platforms have made easier the formation of “communities of practices” from which, in some cases, new forms of social enterprise have emerged.
This research focuses on Addiopizzo Travel, a tour operator which in Sicily organizes pizzo-free trips as a way to fight the Mafia. As a tourism branch of Addiopizzo (‘Goodbye, pizzo’), an anti-racket organization founded in 2004 in Palermo by a group of post-grad students, Addiopizzo Travel works to support those restaurants, hotels, lodges and agricultural businesses that joined the mobilization campaign entitled “change your shopping habits to fight the pizzo” and that refused to pay the Mafia for ‘protection'. In their own city map (available both in print and online), Addiopizzo Travel shows Italian and foreign visitors where to find pizzo-free shops so that those interested in individually supporting the campaign can choose where to do their shopping, or opt for pizzo-free guided tours and excursions.
In this project, the experience of Addiopizzo Travel will be analyzed so as to illustrate how new forms of hospitality and 3.0 tourist cultural model work, and may give rise to new ‘market spaces' in which various subjects can reinstate themselves, building new alliances to oppose an oppressive system of power and privileges. While in-depth interviews with pizzo-free travelers illustrate the links between tourism and travelers’ self-identity and lifestyles – paying special attention to people and their engagement with places, to behavioral choices and decision-making psychology – the in-depth analysis of the Addiopizzo Travel tour operator (how it came about and was developed) will highlight how elements of the marketing mix worked together to meet the organization’s objectives.
The findings will provide valuable input to the literature on what motivates alternative and creative traveling decisions as well as on new models of peer-produced hospitality in tourist services. Implications for marketing and educational campaigns will also be discussed.

  • 2014-present

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