• Home
  • Other
  • Distinguish between Hallmark event and Mega event in tourism 3

Distinguish between Hallmark event and Mega event in tourism 3

  • Category:
  • Document type:
  • Level:
  • Page:
  • Words:

Distinguish between Hallmark event and Mega event in tourism


Tourism is a major social economic factors towards development of any country. It is a sustainable economic venture although it is affected by terrorism and climate change. The use of events and festivals can be very useful in rebranding of a destination image (Muller 2015, p. 680). This paper seeks to distinguish between Mega events and Hallmark events as used in tourism promotion.

Festivals, events and tourism

Flourishing of events and festivals has greatly impacted on development of the tourism industry in the recent decades. According to Janskee 1980, P. 97 as cited by Michael 1989, p.265). These events are celebrative and pleasurable with a main idea to promote for example tourism. They have been in existence since the ancient world and are still use in the current contemporary society. Their main purposes have been urban renewal, economic revitalization and destination image branding especially in tourist attraction cities like Jeddah of Saudi Arabia. Their key driver is their ability to impact greatly not only at national but also international level development of the host city. Mega events attract many people from far places which promotes international tourism. On the other small events and festivals attract local residents which promotes local tourism. Festivals can attract people from far places either for leisure or due to pull motivation which helps promote tourism.

Defining Hallmark event

It is a key event which may be recurring or one time and mainly occurs in a restricted duration of time. It is conceptualized to create awareness and enhance the attractiveness of a tourism terminus (Ritchie 1984, cited by Michael, 1989, p.263). It is purposed to generate a lot of external benefits to the tourism destination. The size and the number of people is not as significant as the impact and historic influence it would have on the people. It does not require many resources to host.

Defining Mega event

It is an extraordinary occurrence which is mainly one time and attracts the attention of both national and internationals to the tourism destination (Kenneth 2004, cited by Shahwe 2011, p.4). It is used in diverse events ranging from rugby to soccer, tourism and urbanization. It hosts many tourists from across the world. It could be either held in a huge hall or outside depending on the numbers of attendance. Mega events use a lot of resources and are aimed at leaving heritage in the host city (Greene 2003, cited by Shahwe 2011, p.4). This kind of event is done through bidding process which promotes peace in the host city. However, as cited by Shahwe 2011, p.15, according to Hiller 2006, conflicts are bound to resurface after the mega event.

Dimensions of Mega events

Mega event was first used in 1987 in a tourism promotion event in Calgary. The resources directed to it were immense and diverse. The events are well created to enhance the first dimension which is visitor attractiveness. Mediated reach is another component which has been in use since 1980. Due to media broadcasting, people do not have to necessarily travel to the venue of event. They can watch at their homes or hotels within their vicinity. The third dimension is cost in terms of inputs instilled in order to gain excellent outputs like attractiveness. According to Jennings 2012, cited by Muller 2015 p. 632, the more an event costs the more prominent and standard people it will attract. The final dimension is urban transformation which is cultivated as a result of infrastructure development and construction of new stadia. It attracts many people from across the globe which may lead to investment and development and urban renewal in general.

Impacts of mega events on tourism

These events usually portray the host city as a destination image which promotes tourism (Shahwe 2011 p. 9). This has an economic impact since tourism is an economic venture which generates income and revenue for the country. This becomes a pull factor for future vacations and leisure activities for the members present and their friends through referrals and networking. Renovation and creation of a new image of a city is one of the activities done prior to this event and creates a peculiar impression to the visitors.

Difference between Mega events and Hallmark events

Mega events are short term with a great impact on the host city’s image. It creates a great destination image to the visitors within a very short span of time. On the other hand, Hallmark events are smaller and are aimed at creating a competitive advantage of the host city. Mega events have a great risk on the economy (Muller 2015, p. 630). For example due to the huge investment, there is no assurance that the money invested will be cultivated in the long run. On the other hand, Hallmark events incur less expenses hence they do not face any danger of loss. Instead they gain more from tourists attracted by the small event. They both play a role in tourist attraction but they differ in such aspects as the diversification of events. Hallmark is a frequently held event in terms of festivals and cultural celebrations while the Mega event mainly focuses on huge sporting activities. Mega events attract many internationals as compared to the hallmark event.

Case study of a mega event

According to Matheson and Baade 2004, world cup 2002 held in Japan and South Korea is an example of a mega event. Both countries has ten separate stadiums. Security arrangements were tight owing to the terrorist attack in 1997 Olympics event in the United States. The Japan FIFA World cup total cost amounted to approximately $ 24.8 billion while the South Korean was $ 8.9 billion. These were not only aimed at the success of the soccer event, but also enhancement of infrastructure for future economic development and tourism destination image. For example the estimated number of tourists visiting South Korea in 2002 amounted to 460,000. The increased number of people led to improved economy of the country. In addition, the athletes themselves act as tourists and their experience in these places has a potential of them visiting the area later with family or friends.

Hallmark events are sporting, expositions and cultural occasions of international prominence which attract tourists and are held once or in regular bases. The main aim of hallmark averts is to offer the host community with a chance to secure great prominence particularly in tourism industry. These events develop primarily to increase awareness and impact profitability of the area of tourism in both short term and long term. These specific events have the capability of propelling their organization or destination towards their hallmark. Hallmark events help in building the modern tourism image.

Hallmark case study

According to the case study by Ritchie and Crouch (2008) on the Winter Carnival, Boston Marathon and Munich Oktoberfest, these vents played a major role in attracting a larger number of tourists in these areas (p408). Most tourists revealed that they visited the regions only to participate in these events. Other studies have suggested that due to the traditional cultural events and pop music festivals held in Europe cities many tourists have been attracted to these regions.

Hallmark is a term used to describe a recurring event that have a greater significance in attracting, building the image and publicity for the host venue to gain competitive advantage. According to study by Ritchie (2008) there is a clear difference between regular and one-time events. One-time events mostly lack participants’ follow-up while regular events creates reputation and awareness build-up (p404). Special events and festivals are good example of hallmark events; they provide opportunities of experiences deliberated to be uncommon, which help in attracting visitors from outside. Getz (1993) case study revealed that almost all regions of the world sought to plan and develop event tourism and festivals (p150).

Most of the host venue organizes either small or larger scale hallmarks events, focusing on their social and economic effects. Studies have shown that culture creates better understanding between societies and therefore it can be used to facilitate interaction and cooperation. Event- tourism has equal demand and supply side, showing the goals, catalyst of attraction and image creation of the destinations. The study by Ritchie and Beliveau (1993) on Quebec’s Winter Carnival event, visitors referred this event as their attraction to this destination (p149).

Hallmark events have become an undying tradition in different communities that shows a certain periodic celebration. Most destinations organize many hallmark events for the purpose of avoiding seasonality demand and perhaps win over the niche markets.


Getz, D., 1993. Case study: Marketing the Calgary exhibition and stampede. Festival Management and Event Tourism, 1(4), pp.147-156.

Getz, D., 2008. Event tourism: Definition, evolution, and research. Tourism management, 29(3), pp.403-428

Matheson, V.A. and Baade, R.A., 2004. Mega‐sporting events in developing nations: playing the way to prosperity?. South African Journal of Economics, 72(5), pp.1085-1096.

Michael, H. (1989). The definition and analysis of Hallmark Tourist event. Geo journal, 19(3), pp.263-268.

Müller, M., 2015. What makes an event a mega-event? Definitions and sizes. Leisure Studies, 34(6), pp.627-642.

Shahwe, T., 2011. Mega-events or hallmark events: Rugby World Cup 2011 on Auckland’s infrastructure.