Destination Personality Perception as predictor of Symbolic Consumption in Africa’s Tourism Industry

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Ajeyalemi, Oladipupo Folorunsho
Olarewaju, Adeniyi Damilola
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Springer Nature Switzerland AG
Even though extant research suggests that many destinations are positioned based on their functional utilities and experiential hedonic values; nonetheless, tourists also tend to embrace destinations that convey symbolic values which expresses and reflects their notion of social identity, lifestyle and self-concept. However, there is a dearth of knowledge concerning tourists’ motivation for symbolic consumption of destinations. This study therefore examined tourists’ behaviour within the African context concerning symbolic consumption of destinations, with emphasis on the predictive influence of destination personality. This was particularly germane because tourism destinations, just like brands or products, have their own unique personalities. Consequently, based on a number of factors, Nigeria was selected to represent the population of study. A survey-based approach was employed and a total of 831 copies of the questionnaire were found useable and acceptable, while factor analysis and multiple regression was employed in the analyses. Findings showed that destination personality is positively related to all three constructs of symbolic consumption. Additionally, four dimensions of destination personality were confirmed, and all proved to be significant individual predictors of symbolic consumption. It was therefore suggested that managers and operators of destinations in Africa need to position and align their respective destinations with the symbolic value attached to tourists’ subconscious and innermost desires. Implications for Africa are discussed.
Destination personality , Symbolic consumption , Tourism , Brand identification , Lifestyle congruence , Self-congruence , Nigeria , Africa