Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to explore the relationship between political instability upon destination image and perception and tourism consumer behavior.
Design/methodology/approach: The paper takes a case study approach and uses cross-sectional and qualitative methods to measure and contrast the perceptions of respondents who have and have not, visited Thailand.
Findings: The study affirms the power of image as a subjectively-held, but important lever of consumer behavior. The findings reinforce the popularity of Thailand as a tourist destination, by both those who have and have not visited, and suggest that its image is a strong one.
Practical implications: The paper concludes that destination managers need to work with governments to ensure political stability, which can lead to continued tourism revenues.
Originality/value: The paper suggests that the effects of adverse publicity on political instability to tourism receipts may be temporary, providing a destination has a strong perceived image (such as Thailand) and the disruption does not last too long.