Curious observation - Black and white tourists in the US - Where are all the African-American tourists?
First of all, our summer vacation in Arizona and Utah was beyond amazing. We had 3½ wonderful weeks. It was absolutely yotta, zetta, exa fabulous. We did so much hiking that I actually lost 7 pounds, although we enjoyed plenty of good food. The nature, in its infinite beauty, was truly breathtaking.
But there’s one thing I was always puzzled about: Why are almost all tourists white? Where are all the black tourists? Don’t they travel? Don’t they like nature? They make up about 12% of the US population. That’s almost 40 million people.
Here’s a list of places we visited with 2 numbers attached: approximate total number of people we saw (we didn’t count of course) and number of black people we saw.
Canyon de Chelly: 300, 0
Monument Valley: 30, 0
Canyonlands: 400, 0
Arches NP: 2000, 2
Capitol Reef: 300, 0
Calf Creek Area: 150, 0
Escalante State Park: 100, 0
Bryce Canyon: 1500, 4
Red Canyon: 50, 0
Zion NP: 2500, 6
Pipe Spring NM: 30, 0
Lake Powell Area: 200, 0
Antelope Canyon: 50, 0
Grand Canyon Rim Areas: 3500, 10
South Kaibab Trail/Phantom Ranch/Bright Angel Trail: 200, 1
Riordan State Historic Park: 30, 0
Sonora Desert Museum: 500, 2
Saguaro NP: 50, 0
Sabino Canyon: 80, 0
Mt. Lemmon Area: 40, 0
Casa Grande Ruins: 30, 0
Superstition Mtns/Apache Trail: 20, 0
That’s roughly 12,000 people out of which 25 were black. In other words 0.2% not 12%.
Suppose the average household income of African Americans is only half of the overall total average. This would still mean we should see 6% black travelers. Suppose there were a lot of regional tourists and fewer blacks live in those 2 states and their neighboring states. We saw cars and RVs from almost any state. Of course more of them were from California than Illinois or New York. And there were a lot of European tourists and most of them are white.
Still, the 0.2% just don’t make any sense, unless there’s a very good explanation. So I did a bit of Internet research. Here are some observations and comments I found:
- I’ve noticed when they travel they tend to frequent places with a sizeable black population because of comfort and safety issues
- Black people tend to steer clear of areas that seem unwelcoming to them
- Seems that African Americans are rather frequenting cruises
- African Americans are more likely to travel to see family
- Because African Americans could not stay in hotels until 40 years ago, there’s less of a generational disposition to travel and tourism in general
- Blacks are more likely to spend their money on material goods than travel, cultural events or education
Really? What are your thoughts? Is this enough to explain 0.2% instead 12%? Are people in Arizona and Utah really that hostile toward black people? I simply cannot believe this. What is going on here?