Various studies have highlighted the influence of family models on the consumer behaviour of young people, identifying their consumption choices as reflecting the values and symbolic systems transmitted to them by their parents. Departing from this premise, a research project was undertaken on a specific target group, that of female University of L’Aquila students living away from home. The aim of the project was to assess the influence of family consumption patterns on the consumer behaviour of these young people once they had left their parents’ home. To this end, a qualitative research methodology was adopted: 5 focus groups comprising University of L’Aquila students living away from home were set up, with a total of 46 students participating overall. Subsequently, the more significant issues emerged were examined in greater depth through 15 semi-structured interviews of selected focus group participants. Regarding in particular convenience goods (food/household items), main findings highlight the rise of consumption patterns that consolidate those that students learned in their families and, in a specific way, the patterns transmitted by their mothers. Student interviewees reported exercising great care – as is done by their mothers – to select the type of sales outlet (shop, supermarket or discount store) strictly according to the specific type of product/brand they need to buy. Their aim is to optimise the price/quality trade-off in accordance with their family values and lifestyle.
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