Alcohol on family-camp-sites obtainable for 15-year old youngsters

8 July 2011

The Dutch Institute for Alcohol Policy (STAP) will visit this summer a number of family-camp-sites. It concerns camp-sites which indicate having a clear alcohol-policy to restrict the use of alcohol by youngsters. The purpose of the visits is to test the alcohol-policy in practice and to give camp-sites which have done well a compliment.
During the summer of 2010 STAP carried out a first exploratory research under 15 Dutch family-camp-sites scattered all over the country. The results of this research have not yet been published before. Out of the 15 family-camp-sites visited in 2010 5 had a clear formulated alcohol-policy. However, in supplementary mystery-shop research it appeared that youngsters under 16 could rather easily buy alcohol on these 5 camp-sites. STAP wants to notice whether the situation has improved on these camp-sites in 2010.

Working-method research 2010
In 2010 interviews were being held with managers of 12 Dutch family-camp-sites. The aim was to get a good picture of the alcohol-policy of the camp-sites. On the basis of the results of these discussions five camp-sites were selected which indicated to be actively involved in restricting the alcohol-consumption of young visitors. An indication of special attention for alcohol-consumption is the taking down of clear camp-site-rules concerning alcohol.
The five camp-sites are, without the knowledge of the managers, examined further, with the purpose to investigate whether the policy was effective in practice.

Mystery research: 10 out of 19 time youngsters got alcohol with them
One of the methods to test the alcohol-policy on the camp-sites consisted of the visit of some youngsters of 15 year to the camp-site-shop and other locations where alcohol is being sold. Dependent on the number of alcohol-sales-outlets these youngsters have done 3 to 5 efforts to buy alcohol at: the restaurant, the camp-site shop, the bar or the snack shop. In total there have been made 19 purchase efforts on 5 camp-sites. The result was that 10 out of 19 purchase efforts, despite the legal purchasing age of 16, were successful. On each camp-site at least one purchase-attempt succeeded. So it turns out to be relatively easy for youngsters under sixteen to buy alcohol during their stay on one of these family-camp-sites. Camp-site Bakkum at Castricum approved to be the best observer of the age-limits, 4 out of 5 purchase-attempts were there not successful.

Further observations: no alcohol-annoyance
The mystery-shoppers and their companions stayed one or more days on the 5 camp-sites. Out of their observations it appeared that alcohol-policy also in a positive sense was perceptible. From conversations with camp-site-guests it appeared that alcohol-consumption by youngsters on the camp-site is being watched out very well. They derived this from the camp-site-regulations, the surveillance on the camp-site and from the age-control at alcohol-selling. However, out of the mystery-research it appears that at this point improvement is being wanted.

The research-project concerning family-camp-sites is a component of the project “Alcohol-free Environment” of STAP Alcoholvrije omgeving . Also the concept of the Alcohol-free School is a component of this project which is also being financed by the Stichting Kinderpostzegels, de Stichting Sobrietas, de Stichting Alcoholvrije Bedrijven and some other regional funds.

For more information:
Dutch Institute for Alcohol-policy (STAP)
Ir. W.E. van Dalen, director,
T.: 030-6565041/06-53295544


Dutch Institute for Alcohol Policy STAP
P.O. Box 9769
3506 GT Utrecht
The Netherlands
T: +31 (0)30-6565041
F: +31 (0)30-6565043