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Abstract

Decision strategy pertaining to discretionary activities such as recreation may have inherently psychological components that are difficult to observe or unobservable. Also, geographical factors may exist when possible recreation site choices are geographically dispersed, whether amenities are similar or not. The choice to visit a recreational facility, then, comes with both a potential utility reward and a potential utility risk. Prior literature has demonstrated that recreational site selection may either be from the perspective of utility maximisation or regret minimisation. Minnesota, USA, is a well-known recreational destination year-round, with recreational consumers coming from all over the state itself and from around the US and Canada. The major regions of the state each have recreational sites making use of their countryside capital, but they differ in population as well as distance from major population centres, such as Minneapolis and Duluth. This study considers various easily observable traits of recreational consumers in the psychological framework of decision strategy to determine their influence on preferences for recreation in Minnesota overall and in its several distinct regions. Such decisions may point to efforts to hedge against emotional risk in the process of utility maximisation and regret minimisation. That information can be used to make better-informed recreational policy in the state of Minnesota, as well as improve local regional policy and corporate efforts to maximise benefit from countryside capital.

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