, Volume 41, Issue 6, pp 1323–1340 | Cite as

Place happiness: its constituents and the influence of emotions and subjective importance on activity type and destination choice

  • Kate Deutsch-Burgner
  • Srinath Ravualaparthy
  • Konstadinos Goulias


The way in which a person organizes his or her day, both temporally and spatially, is a highly important matter to travel behavior and travel demand modeling. Many times, the focus of these models is to accurately predict the “where” and “when”, without paying adequate attention to the “why.” The participation in activities, and therefore the selection of a place for these activities has been recently discussed within the framework of subjective well being. The motivation of happiness can be used to understand how and why people make the choices that they do. Many different criteria are used by individuals in the selection of destinations. These criteria range from attributes such as distance and cost, to attributes such as comfort, security and social aspects in determining the most rewarding destinations. Aspects contributing to a rewarding experience can also be viewed as those decision criteria that lead to the highest satisfaction. In this paper, several attributes of places and decision-making are explored for their potential to explain destination choices. First, a broader analysis of destination choice and criteria used helps us develop a geographic representation of attitudes and views regarding the area of Santa Barbara, California. Following this general evaluation of space, individual activity types are statistically analyzed in the importance different attributes play in the selection of a destination that leads to higher satisfaction.

Travel behavior analysis Place attitudes Subjective well being Happiness Destination choice 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kate Deutsch-Burgner
    • 1
    • 2
  • Srinath Ravualaparthy
    • 3
  • Konstadinos Goulias
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Geography Geotrans LaboratoryUniversity of California, Santa BarbaraSanta BarbaraUSA
  2. 2.Data Perspectives ConsultingSanta BarbaraUSA
  3. 3.Cambridge SystematicsOaklandUSA

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