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    Sep 2003
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    Default Set Jetters phenomenon growing

    Set Jetters phenomenon growing

    Locations featured in films and novels can benefit from a boost in tourism from Britain of up to 30 per cent according to new research from Halifax Travel Insurance.

    More than one in four Britons say they have chosen holiday destinations as a result of reading about them in a novel or seeing them in a movie or TV series. The same proportion say movies and books have a major impact on the places they want to visit in their lives.

    A whopping thirty per cent of people say they are more interested in visiting New Zealand as a direct result of watching the Lord of the Rings trilogy, while Alex Garlands The Beach, and the film adaptation starring Leonardo DiCaprio, has boosted Thailands popularity by 19 per cent.

    We’ve seen growth of 50 per cent out of the UK over the last five years, helped by three years of priceless, unofficial marketing from the Lord of the Rings phenomenon, says Barry Eddington, the London-based regional manager for Tourism New Zealand.

    We’ve definitely noticed the emergence of the Set Jetter in recent years, said David Rochester, of Halifax Travel Insurance. Set Jetters are people who fall in love with parts of the world having seen them in movies and or read about them in books and go there on holiday at the earliest opportunity.

    And its not just Hollywood blockbusters which are feeding the Set Jet phenomenon. Less mainstream films are also having a significant impact on British tourist habits. Fourteen per cent of British adults say they now want to visit Californian wine country as a result of Sideways, the moving comedy about friendship, love and regret.

    A more modest five per cent have put Bolivia on their must-visit list as a result of seeing The Motorcycle Diaries, the film adaptation of Che Geuvaras journals written while travelling in South America in 1952.

    Novels are also influencing the choice of holiday destination. The No.1 Ladies Detective Agency has given Botswana a small tourist boost (four per cent) according the research while The Da Vinci Code has had a profound effect on the Scottish town of Rosslyn and the Church of Saint Sulpice in Paris.

    Rosslyn Chapel, which features heavily in Dan Browns best-seller, attracted 68,000 visitors last year, compared with 9,500 ten years ago. Stuart Beattie, the chapels director, is anticipating up to 100,000 visitors next year when the film of the book is due to be released.

    There is no doubt that this book has raised awareness of the chapel, he said. It means a great deal to us that it has been promoted in this way, but it also means we have had to change our programme of improving facilities here.

    I think Set Jetting may be part of a broader trend, said David Rochester. We have more access to celebrities than ever before and I think that is reflected in a growing desire to visit the parts of the world they make famous.

    This years hits?

    The big set jet phenomenon this summer could be A Good Woman, starring Scarlett Johansson.

    The movies real star is the stunning Amalfi coastline, says David Rochester. We wouldn’t be surprised to see an increase in the number of our policyholders heading for the Bay of Naples this year.

    A less obvious candidate for Set Jetting could be Madagascar, the animated family movie from Dreamworks set on the Indian Ocean Island.

    The biggest Set Jet winner in this country is Alnwick Castle in Northumberland, which stands in for Hogwarts School in the Harry Potter movies. Halifax Travel Insurances research suggests that the movie has increased tourist interest by 16 per cent, closely followed by the Yorkshire Dales which received a 15 per cent boost as a result of Calendar Girls.

    There are different risks associated with different countries and regions, said Rochester, so its important for us to get a sense of how tourism and travel plans are likely to evolve. For example a sharp increase in long-haul travel promoted by films such as Lord of the Rings which are set on the other side of world increases the scale of risk we have to cover for flight cancellations.


    Set Jetting is much more prevalent among younger travellers. Forty five per cent of 16-24 years olds and 30 per cent of 25-34 year olds say movies and books have a major impact on the places they want to visit. There’s also a generation of Silver Set Jetters out there with 26 per cent of over 65s admitting their holiday plans are influenced by novels and films.

    Regionally, people in the North East are by far the biggest Set Jetters. Forty three per cent of people there say their holiday plans are heavily influenced by movies and books.

    News source: http://www.themovechannel.com
    "There's one way to find out if a man is honest-ask him. If he says 'yes,' you know he is a crook." Groucho Marx


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