Stopover destination image–perceptions of Dubai, United Arab Emirates, among French and Australian travellers

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Journal of Travel and Tourism Marketing


© 2018, © 2018 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. This study reports a rare investigation into the phenomenon of stopovers during long-haul international travel. Although destination image has been one of the most popular topics in the tourism literature, there has been a lack of attention by researchers regarding the context of stopover destination image for long-haul international air travellers. Indeed most studies have measured destination image without explicitly stating any travel context. A mixed methods approach in two geographically distant markets yielded externally valid findings. This study commenced with a qualitative stage in two countries to elicit attributes deemed salient to individuals when considering an international stopover. Attributes elicited from the two samples were triangulated with the most common themes reported in the destination image literature. A set of 29 attributes was then tested in two online surveys involving 777 consumers in Australia and France. The study highlights the value of engaging with consumers in a qualitative stage, to design a context-specific destination image questionnaire. By using this approach, 12 potentially determinant attributes of stopover destination attractiveness were identified, eight of which have not been commonly used in destination image studies, and one of which represents a new destination image attribute in the literature.

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