DECONSTRUCTING DESTINATION IMAGE IN THE INFORMATION AGE

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Abstract:

The substantial increases in the volume of tourist information available as a consequence of rapid technological change, globalization, and the blurring boundaries of competition are the main reasons that both consumers and destinations face complexity. These forces combined have caused a process that is ``reengineering'' the tourism industry. Particularly destination image, influenced by the proliferation of communicated destination identities, as driven by the online revolution, holds many innovation promises in terms of destination marketing and positioning. As it is difficult for tourists to form a clear image of a destination without the actual experience, the multimedia interactive nature of the Web can add a whole new dimension to destination marketing. But how are those image attributes that have the largest impact on consumer perception and therefore destination choice identified and measured? Through empirical data this article shows that the present multiattribute destination image research is inadequate in predicting destination choice behavior. A subsequent discussion of the results asserts that the deconstruction of traditional destination image theory is unavoidable. In its place, it is concluded, emerges a new information technology-based destination image measurement paradigm.

Keywords: Consumer research; Deconstructing destination image; Destination marketing offline; Destination marketing online; Reengineering

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3727/109830503108751199

Affiliations: 1: *Emirates Academy of Hospitality Management, PO Box 11416, Dubai, United Arab Emirates 2: †Rotterdam School of Management, Centre for Tourism Management, PO Box 1738, 3000 DR Rotterdam, The Netherlands

Publication date: January 1, 2003

More about this publication?
  • Information Technology & Tourism is the first scientific journal dealing with the exciting relationship between information technology and tourism. Information and communication systems embedded in a global net have profound influence on the tourism and travel industry. Reservation systems, distributed multimedia systems, highly mobile working places, electronic markets, and the dominant position of tourism applications in the Internet are noticeable results of this development. And the tourism industry poses several challenges to the IT field and its methodologies.
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