Exploring Ski Tourist Motivations for Active Sport Travel

Brandon Finn, University of Windsor


Ski tourists are one of the largest activity-based market segments in both Canada and the United States (Canadian Tourism Commission, 2003). This study has used an exploratory approach to better understand why ski resort tourists travel for a ski holiday. Members of a Windsor, Ontario ski club participated in focus groups and an action research component that were analyzed to create a Ski Tourist Motivational Model. The factors that were found which impacted the ski tourist's motivation were: risk, facility/destination, price/economic value, social, safety, skill mastery, relaxation, green initiatives and culture. The factors strengths on ski tourist motivation are shown in the model (high, medium or low). The findings are specific to a small group of Windsor skiers and cannot be generalized about the whole skiing population. This study does, however, provide a theoretical basis for future studies to examine a larger ski tourist population.