Achievement Goal Orientation and Leisure Satisfaction Among Canadian Backpackers: Does Level of Skills Matter?

Thursday, 19 July 2018: 09:30
Oral Presentation
Narges ABDE AHAD, University of Waterloo, Canada
Steven MOCK, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada
Mark HAVITZ, University of Waterloo, Canada
Among outdoor adventure activities, backpacking has grown in popularity among travelers, marketers, and academia in recent years. However, to date research focusing on Canadian backpackers’ satisfaction and motivations is very limited. To address this knowledge gap, this study aims to explore how different patterns of goals (validation-seeking and growth-seeking goals) are associated with leisure satisfaction. The study will also investigate the moderating role of perceived skills on the association between validation-seeking and growth-seeking goals with leisure satisfaction. Data were drawn from a self administrated online questionnaire during the spring 2015 in Canada and 185 valid questionnaires were completed. Both univariate and multivariate analyses were conducted to analyze this quantitative data. The data indicated that Canadian backpackers are mostly growth seeker individuals who travel to learn new experiences as well as to self-improve their backpacking skills. It also revealed that growth-seeking backpackers are more satisfied with their backpacking activity compared to their validation-seeking counterparts. An analysis of the interactions show that growth-seeking had a bigger impact on satisfaction for low vs. high-skilled backpackers. Results also suggest that limited level of skill is not associated with leisure dissatisfaction if individuals consider backpacking as a chance to practice and improve their skills rather than judging themselves on how good they are at their activity. For lower skilled backpackers, having a growth-seeking orientation, it may help them to maintain a sense of self-consistency and positive regard toward themselves which may provide them to acquire more skills for a better performance at some later time. Promoting non-competitive activities may help individuals to value learning over winning, to face challenges and efforts as routes to mastery which may help them to augment their level of emotional well-being.