Alberta's Best Customer


People visit Alberta from all over the world, but there are certain geographic, behavioural and demographic segments that choose Alberta more often and value the unique experiences offered across the province. These are Alberta’s best customers and getting to know them a little better goes a long way when increasing your marketing return on investment.

Know your Explorer Quotient (EQ)

Destination Canada enlisted the expertise of Environics Research Group, one of Canada's leading marketing and social research firms, to develop the Explorer Quotient™(EQ), linking traveller social values with their associated behaviours and preferences. This tool helps tourism marketers get into the mind of the traveller before they make a purchase decision.

What's your EQ?

After extensive research, we identified Free Spirits as our primary target market. This segment is receptive to marketing/advertising messages, significantly more likely to visit many locations in a single trip, and most likely to tell others about their travel experiences, both online and offline. Our secondary target market is Cultural Explorers because, like our primary target, they are always planning for their next trip and are likely to travel with friends and family

Free Spirit

  1. Basics

    13 per cent of global travel market
    Extroverted, driven, open, fun-loving, adventurous
    Household income trends above average
    Prime ages for travel (18-54 = 80 per cent)
  2. Personal Values

    Joy of consumption (shopping)
    Social mobility (advancing in life and work).
    Attraction for crowds (large group atmospheres)
    Penchant for risk (confident risktakers)
    Happiness (full of vitality)
    Need for status recognition (show success by sharing on social media)
  3. Personal Aversions

    Buying on impulse (they’ll shop around)
    Skepticism towards advertising (entrust professionals to help them with major decisions)
    Complexity (not intimidated by changes, spontaneous)
  4. Travel Values

    Constant Comparison Travel (Love to travel – and brag about it)
    Hedonistic Rejuvenation (they will indulge, and share the experience)
    Checklist Samplers (all the main attractions, but not in depth)
    Shared Experiences (socialize and share the experience with others in-person or using social
    media)
  5. Travel Aversions

    Comfort-Seeking (looking for a thrill)
    Reluctant travel (virtual, seeing someone else do it)
  6. Top Experiences

    Shopping, Dining and Other Food-related Activities
    Entertainment, Performing Arts and Amusement Parks
    Accommodation-related Activities
    Water-based Outdoor Activities
    Festivals, Events and Spectator Sports
    Outdoor/Nature Sports and Activities
    Winter Outdoor Activities

Cultural Explorers

  1. Basics

    12 per cent of global travel market
    Open, accepting, non-traditional, enthusiastic, creative
    Household income trends average
    More female than male (57 per cent) on average
    Prime travel age (35-54 = 43 per cent)
  2. Personal Values

    Importance of Spontaneity (welcome unexpected circumstances) that enrich their lives.
    Cultural Sampling (learn about other cultures)
    Adaptability to Complexity (embrace complexity)
    Pursuit of Novelty
    Personal Control (take on moderate risks to learn more)
    Personal Escape (to be transported).
    Personal Challenge (set difficult personal goals).
  3. Personal Aversions

    Confidence in Big Business: Their tendency to (reject authority).
    Conformity to Norms: They like to be unique, (want to be different from others)
    Ostentatious Consumption (not highly materialistic)
  4. Travel Values

    Constant Travel: Always excited about the next trip.
    Living History/Culture: Love to learn about and absorb themselves in the ancient history, as well as the modern cultures of the places they visit.
    The Beauty of Nature: Will choose destinations that provide opportunities to experience natural beauty.
    Fun, Shared Experiences
    Travel is a journey, not the destination, and is best experienced with like-minded companions who like to have fun while learning.
    Going with the Flow: Prefer a free and spontaneous approach to seeing the sights.
  5. Travel Aversions

    Luxury/Comfort-seeking: This EQ type seeks an (authentic experience)
    Group/Checklist Travel (not constrained to “tourist” schedules)
  6. Top Experiences

    Nature Observation Activities
    Exhibits, Architecture, Historic Sites/Buildings, Museums
    Sightseeing Activities
    Accommodation-related Activities
    Water-based Outdoor Activities
    Hands-on Learning Activities
    Festivals, Events & Spectator Sports
    Outdoor/Nature Sports & Activities
    Winter Outdoor Activities