Consumer Behavior in Tourism: Concept and Importance
Consumer behavior is considered a very important aspect of analysis in every marketing activity and especially in the tourism sector, regardless of the type of tourism or tourist destination. In order to take adequate action in the field of hospitality management
and tourism marketing, you need to understand how people make travel decisions, how their personality affects these decisions; analyze what motivations affect this; how attitudes are formed and how different groups influence overall consumer behavior.
What is consumer behavior in tourism?
Consumer behavior can be defined as a set of actions, attitudes, and decisions regarding the choice, purchase, and consumption of tourism products and services, as well as its reactions after consumption.
Because a tourist product is normally a complex package of services, it generates complex types, specific behavioral strategies, and specific features of consumer behavior.
What is the practical relevance of studying consumer behavior in tourism?
Successful marketing decisions of tourism organizations, travel agencies, and other interested parties require extensive information about consumer behavior. All marketing strategies and tactics are based on direct or indirect beliefs regarding consumer behavior. Knowing consumer behavior can be an important competitive advantage. Through a deeper understanding of consumer behavior, motives and actions, tourism organizations can also develop new tourism products and services that meet long-term needs and goals.
Understanding various travel patterns that affect the choice for a particular tourist product, and understanding and using the characteristics of consumer behavior, including tourist motivation, are key to the successful functioning of a tourist enterprise or to promoting a specific tourist destination.
By analyzing the main patterns of consumer behavior in the tourism industry a number of methods can be developed to attract potential tourists, which can lead to a change in the nature and volume of demand.
Factors affecting tourists when buying a tourist product:
There are a number of factors influencing tourist behavior, such as personal, psychological, social, cultural, situational, natural and economic factors. Moreover, external factors of uncontrolled situations have a strong influence on the tourism experience. These include weather conditions, strikes, wars or epidemics of disease. Understanding these factors allows the marketing manager to improve the decision-making process, predict future behavior and have a real objective image of consumer demand, as a result of which to develop new tourism products and services.
- MOTIVATION - factors that motivate a tourist who wants to buy a particular product. It is known that tourist motives as an essential element of demand are the subject of a number of influences that may not be directly related to tourism, but at the same time affect both the volume and forms of demand and choice of tourism products and services;
- DETERMINANTS - factors determining the degree to which a tourist can buy the desired product (e.g., taking into account the financial ability to pay the costs, the need to implement a tourism program, etc.).
1. Walters, C.G., "Consumer behavior. Theory and practice". Homewood : R. D. Irwin, 1978.
2. Fratu, D., "Factors of influence and changes in the tourism consumer behavior", Bulletin of the Transilvania University of Braşov 2011, Vol. 4 (53), No. 1 -в PP 119-126