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Influential factors for intention to visit an adversarial nation: increasing robustness and validity of findings

Svetlana Stepchenkova (TRSM, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida, USA)
Andrei P. Kirilenko (TRSM, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida, USA)
Elena Shichkova (Institute of International Relations and World History, Lobachevsky State University of Nizhni Novgorod, Nizhni Novgorod, Russia)

International Journal of Tourism Cities

ISSN: 2056-5607

Article publication date: 16 May 2019

Issue publication date: 3 December 2019




The purpose of this paper is to investigate the drivers of visitation intention, including demographic, psychographic (animosity, national attachment and consumer ethnocentrism) and image factors on tourist decision-making in a situation of bilateral conflict between the destination country and the source country, that is, the USA and Russia, respectively.


The data were collected at two different points in time from two different samples but analyzed with the same research question in mind. To increase the robustness and validity of findings, three analytical approaches from the repertoire of statistics and data mining techniques such as hierarchical linear regression, logistic regression and decision tree analysis were applied to two independent samples of tourists with different demographic profiles. This multiple methods research employs a complementary design, as methods used have equal importance and are applied concurrently.


The paper obtained generally consistent results across methods and samples: general animosity, destination image and country image are the most influential factors in the tourists’ decision-making to visit a destination country with which their own country has strained bilateral relations.

Practical implications

Destination image is highly important in all analyses and is more favorable than country image. It indicates some degree of separation of the two images in the respondents’ mind, which indicates that marketing a country as a tourist destination on a not-so-friendly tourism market may still be effective. Results also tentatively indicate that for young adults, patriotic feelings matter more in their decision-making, while for more mature tourists, ethnocentric tendencies play a more important role.


The paper examines the influence of general and situational animosity, national attachment, and consumer ethnocentrism on visitation intentions in a situation of conflict between the two nations and, thus, expands the empirical evidence accumulated to date on tourist behavior in conflict. The paper acts on the premise that if a connection between any two variables truly exists, it should be able to withstand variations in samples, timing of data collection and measurement, thus, leading to more robust findings.



Stepchenkova, S., Kirilenko, A.P. and Shichkova, E. (2019), "Influential factors for intention to visit an adversarial nation: increasing robustness and validity of findings", International Journal of Tourism Cities, Vol. 5 No. 3, pp. 491-510.



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