On Southbound Ease and Northbound Fees: Literal Consequences of the Metaphoric Link Between Vertical Position and Cardinal Direction

Leif Nelson, University of California, San Diego
Joseph Simmons, Yale University
The metaphoric relationship between cardinal direction and vertical position influences consumers’ price expectations and shopping decisions. Consumers implicitly associate “north” with “up” and “south” with “down.” As a consequence, they judge difficult and “uphill” travel to be northward and northward travel to be difficult and “uphill.” The perceived difficulty of northward travel increases consumers’ price expectations for northward services and increases intentions to visit stores described as south of a reference point, especially when ease of travel is important.
[ to cite ]:
Leif Nelson and Joseph Simmons (2008) ,"On Southbound Ease and Northbound Fees: Literal Consequences of the Metaphoric Link Between Vertical Position and Cardinal Direction", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 35, eds. Angela Y. Lee and Dilip Soman, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 233-236.