A sample of 234 U.S. travelers was surveyed at various U.S. airports. A survey instrument was used to measure their perceptions of Mississippi as a vacation destination, their intentions to visit and to reveal their socio-demographic characteristics including their place of residence. The factor analysis of 14 tourist-oriented attributes related to participants' perceptions of Mississippi as a tourist destination revealed three factors: “Cultural and Natural Experience,” “Scenery and Environment,” and “Entertainment.” The environmental factor revealed a significant difference between groups; participants residing in the Western region were not strongly attracted by Mississippi's environmental factor. On the contrary, participants residing in the Southern region perceived strongly Mississippi's entertainment components, especially casinos. In term of intentions to visit, 73% of participants from the Southern region indicated that they would somewhat unlikely or very unlikely visit Mississippi compared to 71% of participants from the Western region who indicated a desire to visit the mentioned destination. This study offers substantial theoretical and practical implications about geographical and cultural distances and their effects on a destination's tourist image.
Hallab, Z. and Kim, K. (2011), "The Effects of Nonresidents' Geographical and Cultural Distance on a Tourist Destination's Image", Chen, J.S. (Ed.) Advances in Hospitality and Leisure (Advances in Hospitality and Leisure, Vol. 7), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Leeds, pp. 131-152. https://doi.org/10.1108/S1745-3542(2011)0000007011
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