As an inherent characteristic and pervasive market phenomenon of the tourism industry, seasonality plays an important role in tourist business survivability and sustainability. It is also a significant factor for rural households involved in tourism as they plan their livelihood strategies around it. In this study, household surveys were conducted in The Beautiful South
, an area for rural tourism in Guangxi of Southern China. We analyzed the livelihood capital and strategy of different household types in response to seasonal fluctuations in tourism by applying a mixed method that integrated livelihood capital index (LCI) evaluation and data envelopment analysis. The results indicate that LCI of tourism income-oriented households ranks second among the four types of households, while the LCI of tourism-engaged households in peak season performed better than that of those not engaged. However, the number of households participating in tourism nearly halved during the off season, and they are mainly diverted to temporary labor work, which may be one of the reasons for the low livelihood capital efficiency of tourism households. The implications of the findings and empirical solutions to mitigate the negative seasonal impact are discussed.
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