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Pop Star Fan Tourists: An Application of Self-expansion Theory
Tourism Management
  • SoJung Lee, Iowa State University
  • Billy Bai, University of Nevada, Las Vegas
  • James A. Busser, University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Document Type
Publication Date

Given the growth of pop culture tourism, fans are recognized as an important destination market segment. This study applied self-expansion theory to examine if pop star fans' self-expansion was a significant motivation to seek fan club membership and lead to a positive relationship with their favorite pop star's country. South Korea pop star fans revealed that highly self-expanded fans were more likely to belong to fan clubs and to exhibit stronger group identity, higher travel satisfaction, and greater destination loyalty. The application of self-expansion theory offers a new theoretical perspective to understand pop star fans' psychological characteristics that affect their travel behaviors. By purposefully choosing pop star fans, the study makes a unique contribution with new insights regarding pop culture tourism fans. Destination marketing organizations should recognize pop star fans as potential loyal tourists and develop tailored travel products and services to capture this market.

  • Pop culture,
  • Fans,
  • Group identity,
  • Membership,
  • Travel satisfaction,
  • Destination loyalty
Citation Information
SoJung Lee, Billy Bai and James A. Busser. "Pop Star Fan Tourists: An Application of Self-expansion Theory" Tourism Management Vol. 72 (2018) p. 270 - 280
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