Examining the Impact of Political Candidates on Hotel Revenue
Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Insights
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Purpose - The purpose of this paper is to examine the impact of a charismatic political candidate on hotel revenue in the USA, particularly in their home states, through the lens of the bandwagon effect. Previous researchers have found that political primaries have a significant impact on hotel revenue due to travel to those states; however, there has yet to be an examination of the impact of popular political candidates on hotel revenue. Design/methodology/approach - This research examined the impact of Bernie Sanders’ campaign on hotel revenue in the state Vermont due to the relatively stable demand experienced in that market. First, the researchers used forecasting methodology and t-tests to determine if there was a significant increase in hotel revenue during the time of the Sanders’ campaign for the state and for Burlington, Vermont, his campaign headquarters. Then, eight semi-structured interviews were conducted with hoteliers in Vermont to determine if the Sanders’ campaign was responsible for the observed changes. Findings – While the hotel revenue for the state was not significantly different than what would be expected, the hotel revenue in Burlington did see a significant increase. Hoteliers did attribute an increased awareness of the destination and some specific instances of travelers to Sanders’ campaign. Originality/value - This is the first study to date to demonstrate the influence of a political candidate on hotel revenue and demonstrated that the bandwagon effect can impact hotel revenue. For hoteliers, it demonstrates that increased destination awareness can impact behavioral intentions on a small scale.
Time series; Forecasting; Bandwagon effect; Political tourism
Business | Hospitality Administration and Management
Whalen, E. A.
Examining the Impact of Political Candidates on Hotel Revenue.
Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Insights, 3(1),