This week included many long hours out on the streets, smiling and asking nicely for tourists to take 5-10 minutes of their vacation time to fill out surveys. I was hoping to get the final 400 completed, and today I succeeded in that endeavor.
Two major strategy changes helped me to knock these surveys out. First, I received permission to survey at the Key West Express ferry terminal. Visitors are mainly there between 4-5pm each day, but during that hour they are sitting in air conditioning with nothing better to do than help out a friendly graduate student. I was able to conduct 10-12 surveys per hour at the terminal, which is a vast improvement from the southernmost point surveys which tended to take nearly twice that amount of time. Second, I was able to borrow a third tablet the last few days of surveying, which amped up my productivity by around 50%. Pictured above is me with one of the iPads and
Pictured above is me with one of the iPads and my official City of Key West ID 🙂
Now comes the time-consuming task of data analysis. The surveys sought to determine several things:
Are first time visitors more likely than return visitors to arrive with a car? Out of the total number of days visiting, how many days does the typical tourist actually use a car? From which geographical region are tourists most likely to arrive with a car? Which forms of transportation would tourists consider using? Which forms would tourists “never use”?
Stay tuned for next time to hear these answers and more!
Of course, I had time to snap a few photos from the line at the southernmost point. This conch adorned truck drives by EVERY day. I’ll call this photo ‘culture captured’ – because between the truck, sea grapes, variety of palm trees, the old Florida style home in the background, even the ‘no parking’ sign, this picture says a thousand words about life in the Keys.