Recreational needs and service performance expectations

Gnoth, Juergen & Martin, Brett (2014) Recreational needs and service performance expectations. Tourism Analysis, 19(4), pp. 477-489.

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The theoretical contribution of this study lies with its focus on subjective experiencing, that is, the emotional convergence between feeling states, and perceptions of servicescapes and holiday activities. An empirical study models the impact of recreational needs on the perceived importance of destination attributes and intentions to participate in activities. A sample of prospective tourists was asked to indicate how important they considered servicescape elements to be in their general holiday planning. They were also asked to report on their emotional state (orientation) as a proxy for their needs for recreation, and to state their intention and likely involvement with holiday activities. Results suggest that those with high recreational needs (self-reflexive and inward-looking) regard elements of tourism servicescapes as significantly more important than those without (who are outward-looking and energetic), as well as show significant variations in their inclinations to be active and explorative at destinations. Rather, those with higher recreational needs as measured by combinations of lack of energy, self-confidence, and physiological well-being look for creature comfort, coziness, and familiarity, in other words, for things they already know and have experienced before. Subjective experiencing and service performance evaluations are thereby suggested to be influenced by emotional states. These states may also impact tourists' recognition of destination uniqueness as a major component of a destination's competitive advantage that cannot easily be copied. As a consequence, it may be worth reconsidering the role of recreation in tourism service design. Turning an inwardlooking focus bent on recreation to an outward-looking one interested in discovery would enable more tourists to more fully experience the destination before they leave.

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ID Code: 81824
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Experience, Recreation, Orientation, Service Expectations, Authenticity
DOI: 10.3727/108354214X14090817031152
ISSN: 1943-3999
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > COMMERCE MANAGEMENT TOURISM AND SERVICES (150000) > MARKETING (150500) > Consumer-Oriented Product or Service Development (150501)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > COMMERCE MANAGEMENT TOURISM AND SERVICES (150000) > TOURISM (150600) > Tourism Management (150603)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > QUT Business School
Current > Schools > School of Advertising, Marketing & Public Relations
Deposited On: 16 Feb 2015 22:47
Last Modified: 17 Feb 2015 21:22

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