Online tourism destination image: components, information sources, and incongruence

Aureli Lojo, Mimi Li, Honggang Xu

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

62 Citations (Scopus)


This article considers the three modes of signification of images (i.e. designative, appraisive, and prescriptive) to understand incongruences between different image formation agents. Quantitative and qualitative techniques were used to compare texts (208,348 words) and pictures (4,990) from four sources (DMO, agencies, guides, and blogs) of images about Barcelona. The results explained incongruences between sources. Blogs and agencies tend to offer more images with appraisive meaning than other sources. Guides and blogs tend to offer more prescriptive images of the destination. This study emphasizes that the designative, appraisive, and prescriptive components are valuable conceptualizations to study tourism destination image.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)495-509
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Travel and Tourism Marketing
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 3 May 2020


  • Barcelona
  • Chinese outbound tourism
  • designative, appraisive, and prescriptive meaning
  • Europe
  • image components
  • image incongruence
  • information sources
  • modes of signification
  • Online destination image
  • text and pictures

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management
  • Marketing


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