UBC Faculty Research and Publications

Seasonal Variation in Visitor Satisfaction and Its Management Implications in Banff National Park Geng, Dehui Christina; Innes, John L.; Wu, Wanli

Abstract

Seasonal variations in tourist satisfaction is an important issue for the sustainable management of national parks worldwide. Visitors should have high-quality experiences in both the high season and the off-season. This research investigated visitor satisfaction patterns and determinants in Banff National Park in different seasons. The study was conducted through a face-to-face questionnaire survey that collected visitor demographic, expectation and satisfaction data in July 2019 (high season) and December 2019 (off-season) in Banff National Park. The data analyses were based on a sample of 741 respondents and were processed using principal component analysis, correlation analysis and logistic regression models for different seasons. There were significant differences in visitor satisfaction levels and their determinants in different seasons. The quality of the park’s natural characteristics and the park’s activities were the most important determinant of visitor satisfaction in the high season and off-season, respectively. The correlation between visitor satisfaction and expectations in the high season was generally negative, whereas all correlations in the off-season were positive. The results fill a knowledge gap by examining the seasonal differences in visitor experience and their determinants in the national park, and by building a bridge between visitor experience and tourism seasonality. The findings may assist both practitioners and scholars in understanding visitor expectations and satisfaction in different seasons. They may assist in the prioritization and effective management of the park to optimize the visitor experience in both seasons and achieve tourism sustainability.

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CC BY 4.0

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