Tourist profiles and attitudes: A comparison between cities in a different phase of the life cycle

Josep Francesc Valls Giménez, Gina Pipoli, Paulo Rita, Itziar Labairu-Trenchs

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle in a journalpeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to analyse the different typologies of tourists that appear in cities that are in a different position within the destination life cycle. Barcelona and Lisbon, two urban destinations, with a strong growth of tourists in the last two decades, which are in advanced stages of their life cycle, and Lima, which has also expanded in the last ten years, but is in less advanced phases, have been chosen. The approach of the study is to analyse if urban tourists modify their attitude in some way in the face of the advancement of the life cycle of the city and what attitudes are expressed by them. Design/methodology/approach: For this purpose, an analysis of main components was performed via factor analysis to reduce the number of dimensions of the 11 descriptive variables and the counterpart of tourist attitudes, following Schwartz’s (2006) research. From the four clusters that emerged – authenticity; innovative and cultural hard; relaxation and not innovative – four attitude variables were selected since they were considered relevant to be analysed according to the life cycle of the city: culture and entertainment; authenticity and online social exhibition; and expensive and cheap price. Findings: The results obtained do not allow to straightforwardly conclude that as the life cycle of these three cities advances, the attitude evolves from culture to entertainment, from authenticity towards online social exhibition or from the most expensive to the cheapest. The tourists from Barcelona are mostly associated with entertainment, those from Lisbon are associated with culture and those from Lima are split. However, in the face of authenticity, travellers are prone to it. Regarding the price, those in Barcelona are almost divided equally, whereas those in Lisbon, and especially those in Lima, consider it to be mostly cheap. Originality/value: From this study, it can be drawn that the attitude of travellers to these three cities is not conditioned by the life cycle. Globalization and digitalisation put pressure on the traveller by configuring a universal model of behaviour before the urban offer that is associated with other factors, but not with the life cycle of the city.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)731-748
Number of pages18
JournalInternational Journal of Tourism Cities
Issue number4
StatePublished - 28 Nov 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019, International Tourism Studies Association.


  • Attitude
  • City life cycle
  • Psychographics
  • Urban tourism
  • Values


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