VISITOR SATISFACTION LEVELS AT SOUTHERN UTAH NATIONAL PARKS AS THE NUMBER OF VISITORS INCREASES
Southern Utah University
This study investigates the visitors’ satisfaction levels to find out if satisfaction levels
were decreasing due to the increased visitation levels at southern Utah national parks, which had
experienced double digit visitation increases the past two years. The parks included in this study
are Arches National Park, Bryce Canyon National Park, and Zion National Park. Surveys were
collected from visitors to these three parks on September 15, 2015 (the Saturday of Labor Day
weekend) and on September 19, 2015 (a Saturday two weeks later) to examine the different
satisfaction levels of very busy and less busy time frames.
The results of this study revealed that the percent of visitors that were either satisfied or
very satisfied were comparable for the two dates, but the percent of very satisfied visitors was
lower for the holiday time frame. Common park features that drive visitor satisfaction were
identified. Steps that can be taken to assist visitor satisfaction were also identified.
Keywords: visitor satisfaction; national parks; visitor characteristics; visitor demographics