Hanlan, J, Fuller, D & Wilde, SJ 2005, 'The travel destination decision process and the relevance of segmentation studies to the marketing of regional tourism destinations in an Australian context', Center for Enterprise Development and Research Occasional Paper, no. 1, Centre for Regional Tourism Research, Southern Cross University, Coffs Harbour, NSW.
This paper commences with an examination of a number of approaches to understanding the complex processes involved in the traveller destination decision process. The discussion leads to an evaluation of each of the components seen to influence destination choice between individual travellers. The means of effectively grouping these individuals into meaningful market segments emerges as a key issue in tourist destination marketing. A number of approaches to market segmentation are considered along with an evaluation of several segmentation studies which have been undertaken in the Australian domestic tourism industry. In addition, means of better implementing destination marketing strategies based on methods of achieving more effective segmentation is discussed. Finally, recommendations have been made relating to positioning destinations more effectively and communicating relevant information to target markets.