Guesthouse-based Backpackers in Seoul: Destination Image, Knowledge Management and Q Method

  • LEE, Pam (College of Hotel & Tourism Management, Kyung Hee University,) ;
  • KIM, Chulwon (College of Hotel & Tourism Management, Kyung Hee University,)
  • Published : 2016.09.30


To attract visitors, it is essential to make destinations understandable by developing appropriate destination image. However, managing destination image properly is very complicated in order to induce visitors. In this study, the perceived destination image of backpackers who stay in guesthouse located in Seoul is explored. The purpose of the study was to examine the image of Seoul as a tourism destination. To this end, Q methodology, a technique designed for the systematic study of subjectivity in terms of beliefs, opinions, and attitudes is employed. More specifically, the statements representing different destination images perceived by sampled backpacking visitors were Q-sorted. Results showed that four different clusters of sampled backpacking visitors present four different perceived images accordingly: Seoulizer, Patternaizer, Utilizer, and Socializer. The results of this study imply that backpackers provide idiosyncratic perceptions of destination image, which are different from those offered by general travelers who are less sensitive to travel budgets. In addition, for tourism management, based on this study's results, destination marketing planners are encouraged to perform knowledge management, develop more appropriate plans and customized marketing strategies according to different perceived destination images of backpackers.


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