The motivation of the tourists who visited Balneário Camboriú  SC Brazil in the Summer Season 2017-2018


Ericka Amorim

Polytechnic Institute of Tomar|Researcher, CiTUR (Leiria) and GOVCOOP (Aveiro University)

Edna Melo de Liz

Univali, Brazil

Miguel Angel Verdinelli

Univali, Brazil




In the State of Santa Catarina, in the Southern Region of Brazil, tourist activity represents approximately 13% of the Gross Domestic Product, while this percentage drops to 3.2% when considering the country as a whole. As part of the public policies for the sector, the Ministry of Tourism has identified 65 tourist-inducing districts that move the economy in and of themselves.  The city of Balneário Camboriú, which is the object of this research, is one of the three identified inductors and has an excellent index of evaluation in the country, compared to other States Capital inductors. This study aims to identify the tourist´s motivation and satisfaction while visiting the city during 2017/2018 Summer season. Peak season occurs in the months of December, January and February, and therefore, during these months, 144 questionnaires were applied to tourists coming from Brazil and from other countries. The data was analyzed quantitatively with descriptive and multivariate methods.  95.6% of respondents indicated that the motivation of the trip was vacation and leisure, 83.8% had already visited the city, characterizing it as a destination to which they would return. Approximately 50% of the tourists had visited the city at least 7 times, and 12.5% ​​declared coming back every year which shows excellent rates of return. The results obtained led to the conclusion that Balneário Camboriú is a highly valued destination in the summer season.

Key Words: Balneário Camboriú, Demand, Motivation



The motivation of the human being that drives people to develop different habits and consumption behaviors encompasses biological, emotional and social aspects. The study of these aspects in the tourist activity is of fundamental importance for the destinations to be successful.

Tourists have different motivations to travel, the destination must have adequate infrastructure to meet the needs and desires of its demand. The product offer and services should cater to different groups and audiences.

          There is a broad list of tourists´different interests within the same locality, and this may relate to whoever accompanies them. There are those who travel alone, in a group, in a family or in tour groups. As well as there are those who seek rest while others seek restlessness. There are also those who choose leisure, gastronomy or culture, among the various options. This work aims to identify the motivation of the tourists who visited the city of Balneário Camboriú Santa Catarina during last summer season.


Types of Tourists

The profiles and motivations of the tourists are differen, and to identify them is essential so that the tourist destinations have a supply of products and services according to the demand. The following are models that classify the tourist.

Plog (1973) developed a cognitive-normative model that contemplates three types of tourists, alocentric, mesocentric and psychocentric. The first are exploring tourists, adventurers, in search of new places. When the destination starts receiving a greater number of tourists they seek other places.

The messocentric, or mediocentric, are those who travel without companions, they travel alone. They choose fashion destinations, where most are traveling to. The relationship with the local community is strictly commercial. Finally, the psychocentric who travel to familiar destinations, using tour packages. They are socially influenced, hoping to find the same offer of products and services that they have in their cities of origin. They travel only in groups and are gregarious.

In 1972, the Israeli sociologist Erik Cohen proposed an international classification model for the perspective of tourist typologies. In his view, the tourists can not be considered generic, his motivations and behaviors need to be analyzed, as well as his socioeconomic and psycho-sociological profile. In his model, Cohen differentiates non-institutionalized tourists from the institutionalized ones.

One of the first authors to include those he calls nomads, who are characterized by searching for different and exotic environments, and explorers, who organize their own journeys.  However, the institutionalized include individual mass tourists who travel with the assistance of travel agencies to known destinations, and organized mass tourists, who travel with the family to places that provide them with security, as if it were an "environmental bubble".

In Cohen's normative cognitive model (1972), two types of tourists are described, the first is the modern pilgrim, and he describes three profiles: the existential: who seeks to leave the routine to a destination which brings him spiritual peace; the experimental who seeks alternative lifestyles; and the experiential who wants to find the meaning of the lives of others and the authentic form of local culture.

The second type of tourist is the pleasure seeker, who typifies with two profiles: the diversionary, who escapes from routine and boredom, seeking recreation and recreation in an organized way, and recreational, who  seeks entertainment and relaxation to restore the psychic and mental energies.

Smith (1977) proposed an interactional model, in which he classifies seven different types of profiles: 1) the explorer, who is in search of discoveries and spends time with residents of destiny; 2) the elite tourist, who goes to rare destinations, but which have already been discovered by other tourists, but must have infrastructure; 3) the off-beat, who moves away from the crowds; 4) the unusual, who goes to isolated areas, seeking dangerous activities; 5) the tourist of incipient mass, who travels alone or in small group, looking for authenticity in recreational equipment; 6) mass tourist who is in the middle class, traveling within the "tourist bubble", a safety net and where his financial income allows; and, 7) the charter, who travels in small groups, seeks quiet places that offer relaxation, with family characteristics, but different from his routine.

Based on Plog's cognitive-normative model, the authors Mc Intosh and Grupta (1989) made an adaptation defining five profiles: 1) the alocentric, who travels anonymously and has educational, cultural, political or gambling motivation ; 2) the almost alocentric, whose motivation is sporting, religious, professional and cultural; 3) the mediocentric, who seeks rest, breaking the routine, gastronomic and sexual adventure, enjoys taking pictures to show friends and family; 4) the almost psychocentric, who seeks social status; and, 5) the psychocentric, who is motivated by the marketing of the destination.

The different classifications find links between themselves, the alocentric ones from the Plog model, correlate themselves with explorers of Cohen and Smith. Knowing and identifying the different types of tourists broadens the capacity to comprehend the planning of the tourist destination, as well as to have a better understanding on how the offer of products and services are interrelated with the elements that make up the tourist system.



The objective of this study was the city of Balneário Camboriú, located 80 km from Florianópolis, the capital of the State of Santa Catarina, which receives from December to March, approximately 1.5 million tourists (SANTUR, 2017). It ranks fourth in the national HDI ranking, reaching a value of 0.845, just under Santa Catarina from the HDI of the State Capital that is 0.847. The life expectancy of its residents at birth is 78.62 years old and the per capita income per month is R$ 1,625.59, with GDP per capita of R$ 35,688.42. 93% of children ages five to six are in school. The municipality has an area of ​​46.24 square km and 131.727 permanent residents, which gives a population density of 2,848.52 inhabitants per square km. It is a municipality with excellent urban infrastructure, and considered the fourth best city in Brazil to live (IBGE, 2017).

The survey was applied to tourists from Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay, Chile and Uruguay who visited the city in December 2017, January and February 2018. The total number of respondents was 495, and the sample analyzed in this study of 144 respondents, due to the fact that the information raised was still being incorporated into the database.

Data analysis was performed using STATISTICA Software, version 12. Descriptive statistics and multivariate statistics were used. The multidimensional technique used was the simple correspondence analysis, which makes it possible to evaluate the associations between the cross data of two variables. This technique, according to Hair, Anderson, Tatham and Black (2005), facilitates the classification of the object in a set of attributes and their mapping.

The technique was chosen due to the possibility of working from the frequencies in which a particular category appears. For instance, the reason for the trip is mentioned by the respondent in the different months in which the data was raised. In such a way, the crossings between these two variables can be generated with their frequencies in the different categories allowing the interpretation of their relationships by the proximity with which they can be observed in the generated graphs.



The sample researched in this study allowed us to identify profiles and typologies that are characterized by figures delineating the descriptive statistics and the multivariate analysis used.

In Figure 01, using the factorial analysis of simple correspondences, the ways in which tourists travel are related to the month the data was collected.


Figure 01 - Simple correspondeny analysys between months and travel modality

Source: survey data


In December, the biggest demand in travel was from friends. While January's was  families and February, couples and singles. The profile of the interviewed shows that in December, particularly associated with the end of the year festivities, friends appear with greater intensity. In January, the Brazilian school holidays allow for family trips, and this can be seen in Figure 01. In February, which includes Carnival's festivities, singles and couples visited the destination in a more prominent way.

In Figure 2, the relationship between tourists´ lengh of stay at Balneário Camboriú  categorized as one week (1S), two weeks (2S) and more than two weeks (+ 2S) in correspondence with the sampling months are shown.

Consistent with the prevailing profiles in the Summer months, tourists who visited the destination in December stayed for a two week average, but in January they extended their stay to more than two weeks and in February decreased once again to just one week.

In January tourism is mainly related to family trips, as shown in Figure 01, which allows the family groups to travel to the destination during the Brazilian school holidays.


Figure 02 - Simple correspondent analysis between months and lenght of stay.

Source: survey data


The frequency which tourists return to Balneário Camboriú is shown in Figure 03, exibiting the number and percentage of tourists returning to the destination.


Figure 03 - Tourist's return frequency to Balneário Camboriú

Source: survey data


Figure 04 - Simple correspondent analysis between travel modes and how they chose the destination

Source: survey data


When questioned whether or not they had come to the destination, 136 of the 144 respondents, answered that they had already been in the city, which corresponds to 83.8% of the respondents. It is thus confirmed that these tourists can be considered psychocentric (PLOG, 1973), that is, those who prefer to visit family destinations.

Figure 4 shows the associations that exist between the way in which the tourists usually travel and how they decided to travel to the destination researched.

On figure 04 the category "other" includes the destination choice using internet  information, travel agencies, holiday destination presentations or television advertisements. Observing the arrangement of the points in the space of representation it can be associated with family travel almost in a equivalently way between those who came by friend's recommendation or relatives and those who already knew the destination.

Likewise, those who travel with friends also stand between these two conditions. For their part, those who travel alone or as couples are linked with the recommendation and to some extent with other ways to get to know Balneário Camboriú as a tourist place.

Figure 05 depicts the percentages by which tourists visiting Balneário Camboriú travel to their destinations. The chart shows that most return after getting to know the city and surrounding counties. For this, the available infrastructure to meet demand is important.


Figure 05 - Bars diagram indicating the frequency about the tourists return on the destination

Source: survey data


Almost 50% have been in the city at least 7 times, and 12.5% ​​have declared to come every year, constituting excellent return index, described as explorers because they live with the residents (SMITH, 1977).


Final Considerations

Balneário Camboriú has distinct typologies and profiles of tourists, among them are the messocentric (PLOG, 1973), who are the ones who travel alone. Also, the psychocentric (PLOG, 1973) that travel with the family and correspond with the institutionalized ones, in the Cohen model (1972), which indicates that these family trips are made to destinations where there is security. If Smith's (1977) interactive model is considered, those who visit Balneário Camboriú, mass tourists or incipients traveling alone or in a small group, including the family, can be identified.

A significant portion of the demand already knows the city and has a very high rate of return. This is particularly valued during high season summer holidays. which can be correlated with the profile of the psychocentric (PLOG, 1973).

The majority of the sample analyzed is linked to a family destination, characterized by a high rate of return, what, in Smith's view (1997), is associated with the typology of explorers, since they coexist with the locality. According to this author are the explorers who have coexistence with the resident. This researched public seeks to return several times a year.

This destination contemplates the main typologies and profiles of tourists that are related in the theoretical framework employed. Therefore, it can be considered that the city is a multipurpose destination that operates as a true inductor.




PLOG, S.C. (1973) Why destinations áreas rise and fall in popularity. Nova York , Cornell H.R.A.Quartely.

COHEN, E. (1972) ‘Towards a sociology of international tourism’, Social Research 39, pp.164-182.

SMITH,V.(org.) (1977) Hosts and guests: Na anthropology of tourism . Filadélfia, University of  Pennsylvania Press.

Hair, J. F. Jr.; Anderson, R. E.; Tatham, R. L. & Black, W. C. (2005) Análise Multivariada de Dados. 5ª ed., Porto Alegre: Bookman.