Who are the big spenders at a motorcycle event?
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Africa Bike Week, considered South Africa’s premier biking event, attracts large numbers of bikers, especially Harley-Davidson bikers, and bike enthusiasts from across the country. This study investigated these visitors and their spending behaviour. As background to the study, we provide a broad survey of the literature on socio-demographic and behavioural determinants of spending. Motorcycle tourism has received international research attention, especially in the US, but to date has been neglected in South Africa. Our study helps to fill this gap, particularly as regards biker and spectator characteristics. We found that more behavioural than socio-demographic variables influenced spending at this event. Visitors’ motorcycle behaviour and group composition had a significant effect on higher spending. The analysis identified three new determinants of spending: the travel motives lifestyle, event attractiveness and event novelty. Event organisers can use this information to increase spending and enhance the economic impact of motorcycle tourism in South Africa.