Special Forum

Review on Several Issues of Travel Cost Method in Tourist Resources Valuation

  • 1. School of Tourism & Urban Management, Zhejiang Gongshang University, Hangzhou 310018, China;
    2. Department of Land Resources and Tourism Sciences, Nanjing University, Nanjing 210093, China

Received date: 2011-01-09

  Revised date: 2011-05-20

  Online published: 2011-11-20


Travel Cost Method (TCM) is a revealed preference approach for valuing tourist resources based on observed economic behavior. In TCM research, several problems, including selecting model, measuring travel cost and estimating the demand function, are controversial. Based on the literature review and analysis, this paper discusses the biases in TCM research and puts forward some solutions respectively. After that, the validity, applicability and legality of TCM are discussed and the emphasis and direction of the future research are proposed. The result of literature review shows that: 1) there are six categories of TCM, including ZTCM, TCIA, GTCM, ITCM, HTCM and RUM; 2) the following problems, which include endogenous stratification, sampling errors, opportunity cost of time and multi-destination trip during the measurement of travel cost, and multi-colinearity, endogeneity and the choice of function form during the estimation of recreational demand function, may lead to biases in TCM valuation; 3) although there are various defects in validity in developing countries, and its applicability and legality are controversial, TCM is still an effective method to measure the recreational value of tourist resources; and 4) the development of TCM should shift gradually from case study to bias analysis and validity test, and then, modification and improvement of the TCM model, especially the combination of the TCM and CVM, should be emphasized to establish and perfect the TCM implementation rules that are suitable to developing countries.

Cite this article

DONG Xue-wang, ZHANG Jie, ZHANG Jin-he . Review on Several Issues of Travel Cost Method in Tourist Resources Valuation[J]. JOURNAL OF NATURAL RESOURCES, 2011 , 26(11) : 1983 -1997 . DOI: 10.11849/zrzyxb.2011.11.017


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