Tourism and Destination Management Individual Assignment
Statement of authorship
I certify that this dissertation is my own work and contains no material that has been accepted for the award of any degree or diploma in any institute, college or university. Moreover, to the best of my knowledge and belief, it contains no material previously published or written by another person, except where due reference is made in the text of the dissertation.
The topic of “tourist destination image” and its relevant meaning has been explored and approached differently. The term itself has been used in various contexts and as a result, coming up with a precise definition isn’t an easy task and is considered as problematic (Jenkins, 1999, p. 1). Throughout this paper, the image of a touristic destination and its relevance to the countries branding strategy will be explored. The first part begins with theoretical analysis of tourism destinations image exploring various author’s research and opinions on the topic. In the second part of the assignment, a comparative analysis is done investigating the image of Burundi and Switzerland and at what stage of the tourism areal life cycle (TALC) they currently stand at. Furthermore, before concluding, a discussion on the SoLoMo experience will be made by discussing its importance and relevance to the tourism image of a destination. Theoretical research of the concept of tourism image
When exploring the image of a tourism destination, one can approach it from two different perspectives. From a psychological point of view, it is seen as a visual representation, whereas from a behavioral geographical perspective, it is seen as being more holistic and includes a combination of various impressions, knowledge emotions and beliefs. Looking at the image of a tourist destination from a marketing perspective, one tends to evaluate its attributes and relate the image a tourist destination has and consumer’s behavior towards it. According to research results, Crompton’s (1979, p. 18) definition of tourism destination image seems to be used more often. He describes it as being the general computation of beliefs, ideas and impressions that an individual has of it. Marketers on the other hand, generally look at the image of a destination by exploring the impressions that a group of people has of that place instead of focusing on the individual’s opinion itself. (Jenkins, 1999). Lawson and Baud Bovy (1977), have combined these two approaches and defined destination image as: “the expression of all objective knowledge, impressions, prejudice, imaginations and emotional thoughts an individual or group might have of a particular place” (Jenkins, 1999). Looking at a destination from a visual point of view is extremely important when it comes to understanding the world. John Berger (1972) clearly states that, “Seeing comes before words”. In order to further express his view, he associates it with the image of a child that will always look at something and recognize it before they actually speak. Most individuals believe that this is the correct way of looking at a destinations image. This is because depiction, picturing and seeing are ubiquitous features of the processes by which most humans come to know the world as it really is for them (Feighey, 2010). In today’s social world it is difficult to influence the perception individuals have on the image of a certain destination, how it is distributed, experienced and understood. Using visuals such as photographs, films, videos, television, digital images and other technologies aid in forming part of many individuals everyday experience. Those who do not have any direct experience whatsoever with such technologies, are influenced indirectly with these...