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Über dieses Buch

The papers presented in this volume advance the state-of-the-art research on social media and Web 2.0, electronic tourism marketing, website development and evaluation, search engine marketing and optimization, IT adoption and diffusion, virtual travel communities, mobile technologies, management information systems in tourism, eLearning, recommender systems for tourism businesses and destinations and electronic distribution for hospitality and travel products. This book covers the most significant topics contributed by prominent scholars from around the world and is suitable for both academics and practitioners who are interested in the latest developments in e-Tourism.

Inhaltsverzeichnis

Frontmatter

Mobile Technologies and Context-Aware Systems

Frontmatter

Mobile Social Travel Recommender System

Travel Recommender Systems (TRSs) help tourists discovering and selecting the Points of Interest (POIs) that best fit their preferences. Recommendations rely on the data available about the POIs of a destination, the knowledge about tourists and their preferences about categories, and recommendation algorithms. This paper presents a Mobile Social TRS. The recommendation process is divided in two independent processes: the generation of user models and the calculation of the recommended POIs. The recommender generates user models taking into account their explicit preferences about categories, demographic information, and the tags they have created. Then, similarities between users are based on the POIs they have rated. Finally, a hybrid filtering algorithm combines these models with a content-based and a collaborative filtering algorithm to calculate a list of recommended POIs. The recommender has been integrated in a mobile prototype of the CRUMBS social network and preliminary results of its partial validation are presented.

Ander Garcia, Isabel Torre, Maria Teresa Linaza

Mobile Apps Devoted to UNESCO World Heritage Sites: A Map

As of July 2013, 981 properties in 160 States were enlisted by UNESCO as World Heritage Sites (WHSs), according to its “Convention Concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage”, signed in 1972. While the main emphasis of the Convention is on protection and conservation of cultural and natural heritage of outstanding universal value, also its presentation is included among UNESCO’s goals. Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) may help in fulfilling the goal of presentation, on the one hand opening up such properties and their meaning also to people who are not able to visit them, on the other hand supporting responsible and sustainable tourism by those who can access them, so that visitors can better understand and enjoy WHSs, becoming aware of their importance and of their fragility, hence behaving in a way that does not hinder their transmission to future generations. To better understand the role of ICTs for WHSs’ presentation, this paper provides an analysis of mobile apps concerning WHSs, mapping them according to several factors, including covered sites and areas, main contents and functionalities, intended publics, costs, and presence of UNESCO-related info.

Theresa Karolina Schieder, Asta Adukaite, Lorenzo Cantoni

An Analysis of Mobile Applications Classification Related to Tourism Destinations

The widespread use of mobile devices in daily life activities has impelled a growth in the development of applications (apps) for different purposes. Tourism is one of these spheres of activity in which mobile apps have been developed to support visitors. However, there is not enough understanding of the features that foster the relevance or popularity of a tourism app. Consequently, this paper will analyse the features of specific destination-related apps in Google Play. This analysis will shed some light on generic features of these applications in order to identify potential patterns that correspond to better positioning in searches related to the selected destinations. With this purpose, the research has performed a daily automatic massive collection of data by means of a crawler. Obtained results will provide a brief overview of the characteristics of the most successful applications and could provide some insights in the design and development processes of tourism mobile apps.

Ion Gil Fuentetaja, Ion Zugasti Simon, Ariane Rubio Aranzabal, Maria Peralta Ariza, Carlos Lamsfus, Aurkene Alzua-Sorzabal

Hotel Mobile Apps. The Case of 4 and 5 Star Hotels in European German-Speaking Countries

The importance of mobile internet for travel and tourism has been widely acknowledged, nonetheless the different typologies of mobile applications, their design and usefulness are still under researched. In order to contribute to such analysis, this paper studies the “supply side” of hotel mobile applications adopting two research approaches, which complement each other. First, it draws a comprehensive map of contents and services offered by 80 iOS mobile apps of 4 and 5 star individual hotels as well as hotel chains in European German-speaking countries. Second, beside such objective analysis, the point of view of hotel managers is considered, studying both those whose hotel/chain features an app, and those who are not or not yet offering one. The main drivers for publishing an app are: increasing the loyalty and promoting special offers as well as enhancing the interaction with the guests and providing information about the destination. The main reasons for not publishing an app are: perceived irrelevance for the business, absence of added value to the guests’ satisfaction, difficulty to estimate the return on investment as well as lack of economic resources.

Asta Adukaite, Annina Melanie Reimann, Elena Marchiori, Lorenzo Cantoni

The Effects of Presence Induced by Smartphone Applications on Tourism: Application to Cultural Heritage Attractions

Increased use of mobile devices in the tourism industry enhances tourist satisfaction by improving their overall experience in particular settings. Presence, in this case, is the state of one’s subjective recognition when experiencing in virtual realms beyond realistic physical and tangible spaces. The purpose of the study is to investigate the relationships between the presence brought upon the use of smartphone applications, the touristic experience, and tourism satisfaction, when smartphone applications are applied to cultural heritage attractions. A survey was employed for the data collection at cultural heritage attractions in Korea from tourists who had used smartphone applications during their travels. The study found a significant relationship between presence of smartphone applications and touristic experience, which also significantly affected overall tourist satisfaction. The study contributes to the body of knowledge on the impact and effects of “presence” when smartphone applications are utilized in tourism.

Keumsil Lee, Hyung Ryong Lee, Sunny Ham

CT-Planner4: Toward a More User-Friendly Interactive Day-Tour Planner

It is often difficult for novice people to make a tour plan for a tight schedule. Hence, we have developed a computer-aided tour planner, which enables the user to design a tour plan with the system in a collaborative manner. This paper introduces its latest version,

CT

-

Planner4

, which becomes accessible via Internet and is improved to achieve more user-friendliness. CT-Planner4 mainly targets foreigners and is expected to stimulate their hidden/unattended needs of plan consultation. Our two user tests with international students and foreigners living abroad, and another interviews with tourist advisors substantiates the practicality of CT-Planner4. Finally, we propose the application of its user log to marketing analysis.

Yohei Kurata, Tatsunori Hara

Context-Aware Points of Interest Suggestion with Dynamic Weather Data Management

Weather plays an important role in tourists’ decision-making and, for instance, some places or activities must not be even suggested under dangerous weather conditions. In this paper we present a context-aware recommender system, named STS, that computes recommendations suited for the weather conditions at the recommended places of interest (POI) by exploiting a novel model-based context-aware recommendation technique. In a live user study we have compared the performance of the system with a variant that does not exploit weather data when generating recommendations. The results of our experiment have shown that the proposed approach obtains a higher perceived recommendation quality and choice satisfaction.

Matthias Braunhofer, Mehdi Elahi, Francesco Ricci, Thomas Schievenin

Business Model of Mobile Service for Ensuring Students’ Safety Both in Disaster and Non-disaster Situations During School Trips

We are developing a mobile service for ensuring students’ safety during the school trips that provides the current position and a history of movement during their trips for non-disaster situations and helps to escape in the event of a disaster. Since the Great East Japan Earthquake, teachers are now required to ensure the security of students during school trips. We developed the mobile service to solve this increasing social needs. During the development, we found some issues to be solved beside the technical problems. Namely, (1) monetization of the business, (2) limited sales channel, (3) anxiety about the treatment of personal information and (4) teachers’ negative tendency to new technical tools. In this paper, from the viewpoint of the business, our approach to realize the service is described.

Hidekazu Kasahara, Mikihiko Mori, Masayuki Mukunoki, Michihiko Minoh

Predicting from GPS and Accelerometer Data When and Where Tourists Have Viewed Exhibitions

Research has been conducted to understand tourists’ spatio-temporal behaviours. However, it is very costly to investigate what the tourist was actually doing at each location and moment and what he/she was interested in Kawase et al. (When and where tourists are viewing exhibitions: Toward sophistication of GPS-assisted tourist activity surveys. Springer, Vienna, pp. 415–425, 2012) demonstrated the possibility that we can predict only from a tourist’s GPS log whether he/she is viewing an exhibition or not, which is one of the most basic activities in tourism. Following their work, we conduct an additional experiment two types of subjects, students and kindergarteners with parents, and refine the prediction model with additional explaining parameters. We found that the model for students could be successfully improved, while that for kindergarteners has a problem due to the inconsistency of their behaviour. In addition, we experimentally investigated the combined use of a GPS sensor and an accelerometer, both usually equipped in smartphones, for predicting tourists’ viewing state. The result shows that the combined use of these sensors seems promising to infer tourists’ activities.

Junya Kawase, Yohei Kurata, Naoto Yabe

Social Media Marketing Strategies

Frontmatter

An Investigation into the Use of Social Media Marketing and Measuring its Effectiveness in the Events Industry

Social media are seen as a new marketing tool in the service industry. Digital marketing communication is nowadays interactive and marketers are looking at social media as a means to reach a wider audience. After reviewing current practices and measurement techniques, this study investigates how events companies are exploiting this new communication means. The research has been designed with a case study approach: different marketing figures in three different companies have been interviewed. Results show the importance of social media in events companies and the lack of professional measurements. Furthermore, results show the importance of senior management commitment towards the use of social media as marketing tool.

Alessandro Inversini, Emma Sykes

Investigating Social Media Marketing in the Hospitality Industry: Facebook and European Hotels

Social media have changed the way people interact with each other and with companies. In fact, recent research confirms that user-generated content is a key element in the decision-making process of customers who travel. The hotel business is now taking advantage of the introduction of social media into their marketing programmes, trying to create a customized relationship with consumers. The aim of this study is to investigate the use of social media among European hotels. Quantitative and qualitative research methods have been combined to identify a group of items useful to comprehend how hotels interact with customers on social media. The results show that European hotels are still in the first stages of developing social media strategies that present a moderate level of integration among different media. They are considered a useful instrument to promote the hotel brand but the potentiality of customer engagement is still undervalued.

Roberta Minazzi, Stefan Lagrosen

Strategic Use of Social Media Affordances for Marketing: A Case Study of Chinese DMOs

Social media have become important platforms for tourism marketers but it is not clear if and how these organizations use social media to achieve particular strategic marketing goals. Given the enormous growth of both tourism and social media in China, this paper focuses on Weibo and its specific technological affordances. Using a case study methodology, it looks at five Chinese DMOs and analyses their Weibo activities in terms of correspondence to marketing communication elements and relation to specific technological affordances. The findings indicate that despite the opportunities for personal selling, DMOs do not fully capitalize on Weibo to achieve personal selling goals. Further, not all technological functions are used for strategic marketing purposes. Both theoretical and practical implications are discussed.

Jing Ge, Ulrike Gretzel, Rodney J. Clarke

SoCoMo Marketing for Travel and Tourism

Advances in mobile technologies have enhanced the capabilities of marketers to identify the immediate preferences of consumers through social media. Latest generation devices are increasingly equipped with sensors that allow the reception of context-aware information about the consumers and their devices. This conceptual paper suggests that the combination of social media and context-aware technologies in mobile devices opens up a whole new range of opportunities for marketing. The paper calls this combination social context mobile (SoCoMo) marketing and offers a first definition. It also proposes a conceptual framework that illustrates the idea of SoCoMo marketing and provides room for a number of implications. It further explores the potential of this new marketing approach for travel and tourism and concludes that there are great prospects for the success of SoCoMo marketing in the near future.

Dimitrios Buhalis, Marie-Kristin Foerste

Content Curation and Narrative Tourism Marketing

This paper explores the communication features of content curation tools based on storytelling and content dissemination in social media from a tourist marketing perspective. Narrative structure of tourist information and self-referential memory stimulate empathy in readers towards the destination and influence their decisions when planning their holidays. Content curation tools integrate different services such as filtering, wrap up and publishing content that can be organized in a sequential form following episodic narratives to be diffused through social media. This fosters debate and conversation between the readers who will in some cases share the content inside their networks. Reactions can be tracked and followed by marketers to review their marketing strategies, to individuate stakeholders among readers and to collect feedback.

Oriol Miralbell, Aurkene Alzua-Sorzabal, Jon Kepa Gerrikagoitia

Destination Benchmarking with Geotagged Photographs

Benchmarking tourism destinations is essential to improve and also observe what others are doing right. This process has different steps and choosing the right partners is a crucial one. Although there are many studies about how to benchmark destinations, there are no clear steps that explain how to choose destination partners. Tourists who visit the same destinations can be an indication of destination benchmarking partners. This is an explorative study to identify benchmarking partners of Austrian regions using Flickr photos. First, the regions the tourists had visited in Europe and in Austria were located. Then the destinations that share the most tourists were chosen as benchmark partners. The results show that Vienna and Salzburg can be benchmarked with cities such as Paris and Prague. The smaller regions of Tyrolian Unterland and Traunviertel can be benchmarked with neighbouring regions, which offer similar outdoor activities like skiing and hiking.

Wolfgang Koerbitz, Irem Önder

The Adoption of Pinterest for Destination Marketing: The Case of Austrian Destinations

The internet and social media play a major role as information sources for tourists and travellers in the travel decision making process. Since the tourism product is intangible, travellers have to rely on images and descriptions regarding travel products and services. Images are subconsciously more influencing than text. Therefore, online photo sharing platforms such as Flickr or Pinterest offer great potential for marketing in the tourism industry. This paper introduces the opportunities of Pinterest in the tourism industry and analyses its usage among Austrian destination management organisations (DMOs). The Pinterest outlets of three Austrian DMOs are analysed and benchmarked with the Pinterest website of the Swiss National Tourist Organisation. Moreover, an online survey was conducted among Austrian DMOs. The results indicate that the usage of Pinterest is still rather limited. Nevertheless, the prevailing opinion towards photo sharing websites for marketing purposes in general and towards Pinterest in particular is positive.

Christian Maurer, Bianca Hinterdorfer

Activity and Influence of Destination Brands on Twitter: A Comparative Study of Nine Spanish Destinations

Tourist destinations have started using Twitter as a new platform to provide information to travellers. However, it is still unclear what the future role of this social network is and how tourist destinations will use its characteristics to improve their influence and impact on the network. This study analyses the activity of nine Spanish tourist destinations and explores their influence on Twitter considering the number of followers, retweets and mentions. We conclude that while some of these destinations are using intensively Twitter and have a considerable influence on it, other destinations have little impact and need to improve their strategies to achieve their objectives. The study is a first step to explore the keys that explain the success of the DMOs on Twitter.

Frederic Guerrero-Solé, José Fernández-Cavia

Emotion and Sentiment Analyses

Frontmatter

How Emotional Do We Get? A Closer Look into the Trip Advisor Dialogue

In light of the rapid development of social media industry players need to become more strategic in their online interactions with tourists. Research on online reviews and how to best respond to them is inconclusive. Therefore, the first aim of this study is to gain an understanding of the presence of emotions in hotel reviews and manager responses. Second, this study investigates how the level of emotions of online hotel reviews and online management responses vary according to hotel classification and review rating. Conclusions are drawn from a quantitative text analysis on 440 reviews and 440 responses from Trip Advisor. The results suggest that management significantly need to consider strategies for online dialogue in order to retain satisfied customers as well as a positive online reputation.

Astrid Dickinger, Lidija Lalicic

Sentiment Analysis: Extracting Decision-Relevant Knowledge from UGC

Electronically available user generated content (UGC) dramatically increased in recent years and constitutes a highly relevant information source not only for other customers but also for tourism suppliers. Customer needs and their perception of consumed products can be extracted from UGC and represent a valuable input to product enhancement and customer relationship management. A prerequisite to that end is an automatic extraction of decision-relevant knowledge from UGC with a sufficient quality. This paper presents a novel approach for extracting decision-relevant knowledge from UGC and compares different underlying data mining techniques concerning their accuracy in topic and sentiment detection of textual user reviews. The complete extraction process is implemented and evaluated in the context of the Swedish mountain tourism destination Åre.

Sergej Schmunk, Wolfram Höpken, Matthias Fuchs, Maria Lexhagen

Breaking Up is Hard to Do: Why Do Travellers Unlike Travel-Related Organizations?

Previous studies have looked at relationship creation and maintenance between travellers and companies on social networking sites (SNSs), but have neglected relationship termination. This study examined travellers who “unliked” travel-related companies and destinations on facebook and found demographic and psychographic differences, as well as differences in characteristics related to travel planning, travel behaviour, and internet use to those who have never terminated such a relationship. Travellers have different motivations for unliking travel-related companies or destinations. Travellers routinely unlike travel-related companies for perceived faults in their social media presence (end of promotions, posting frequency or relevance), while travellers tend to unlike a destination based on offline experiences.

Ulrike Gretzel, Anja Dinhopl

Measuring Emotions in Real Time: Implications for Tourism Design

This study introduces a new approach to assess travellers’ emotions in natural settings, and discusses the implications of this approach within the context of designing tourism places. In particular, recent advancements in technology enable researchers to measure individual’s electrodermal activity (EDA), a primary physiological measure of emotions, within a wide range of environments. This paper reports the results of a case study which tracked the emotions of two visitors to Philadelphia, USA over four days. The results indicate that the Philadelphia visitors exhibited a substantial variation in emotions depending upon the places visited, their activities, and the people they met; also, the two responded differently to the environment throughout the four days. It is concluded that the ability to measure travellers’ emotions across settings and in real time can help to explain the relationship between physical and social environments and emotion, and in turn, provides an extremely useful tool for evaluating alternative strategies for designing and managing tourism places.

Jeongmi (Jamie) Kim, Daniel R. Fesenmaier

Social Network and Interaction

Frontmatter

Exploring the Role of Facebook in Re-Shaping Backpacker’s Social Interactions

The recent Facebook launch of Timeline, Social Graph Search, and the increased use of the mobile Facebook apps has resulted in some important implications for the use of Facebook by backpackers. The purpose of this paper is to (re) explore how Facebook has impacted social relationships between backpackers and their personal, professional, and ‘fellow traveller’ networks, particularly in-light of these recent changes to Facebook and the increased reduction of anonymity while travelling. An exploratory survey was administered to 216 backpackers through social media. Descriptive analysis was conducted to explore the perceived social risks and benefits of Facebook in the context of the backpacking experience.

Edward Alexander Berger, Cody Morris Paris

Analysing Ecotourists’ Satisfaction in Socialisation and Knowledge Sharing Intentions via Social Media

Socialisation and knowledge sharing are considered vital for ecotourists in their satisfaction of ecotourism experiences. This study examines satisfaction in socialisation leading to knowledge sharing activities for ecotourists using social media. The study uses the social exchange theory and the theory of reasoned action to examine the factors of cooperation and reputation that lead to satisfaction in socialisation via social media and intention to contribute knowledge. Based on the multiple regression analysis results, the study confirms that cooperation and reputation leads to ecotourists’ satisfaction in socialisation via social media which in turn leads to intention of ecotourists to contribute knowledge.

Sudipta Kiran Sarkar, Norman Au, Rob Law

Opinion and Consensus Dynamics in Tourism Digital Ecosystems

A tourism destination is a social network with a group of interacting stakeholders jointly producing the experience that the travellers consume. The harmonisation and coordination of stakeholders’ views and the development of a consensus-based strategy are essential elements for destination competitiveness and growth. Despite that, there is still scarce research aimed at analysing the mechanisms through which consensus can be achieved and how such a process can be assessed and monitored. This paper aims at contributing to fill this gap applying a spectral analysis to three destination networks with the objective of analysing the mechanisms through which information flows across the connections that link the different stakeholders and those that rule the establishment of a common opinion. Contributions to the body of knowledge and managerial implications are discussed and suggestions for further research are given.

Rodolfo Baggio, Giacomo Del Chiappa

Co-creation Through Technology: Dimensions of Social Connectedness

With the increasing mobility and the emergence of social information and communication technologies, the tourist has turned into a connected consumer. In using the range of technologies available, tourists are now able to connect with their social circles to engage, share and co-create their tourist experiences online. While the significance of co-creation has been widely recognised, there is a major gap in understanding on what levels technology-facilitated co-creation can occur. This paper therefore aims to uncover the dimensions of social connectedness and develop a differentiated knowledge of how exactly tourists co-create through ICTs. The findings reveal six distinct dimensions that can be positioned on a social intensity continuum, ranging from disconnection to social co-living of the experience. In revealing social connectedness to everyday life and the home environment, this study highlights key implications for the existing theoretical understanding of tourist experience portrayed as a reversal from of the everyday life. Implications for further research and practice are discussed.

Barbara Neuhofer, Dimitrios Buhalis, Adele Ladkin

Online Reviews

Frontmatter

An Exploratory Study on Restaurant Review Websites

Along with the rapid development of online marketing, online restaurant review websites provide a convenient channel for online users to share their dining experience. This research aims to establish a guideline for restaurant review websites. Using an Importance-Performance-Analysis (IPA), the paper examined online users’ perceived importance and performance of thirty-two website attributes. Different perspectives were also found between content contributors and content browsers. Research findings are expected to help industrial practitioners bridge the gap between customer needs and review website development, which in turn benefits restaurant operators, review website owners and online users.

Shanshan Qi, Fiona Yang, Catherine Li

Measuring Hotel Service Quality from Online Consumer Reviews: A Proposed Method

This paper proposes a new method to measure hotel service quality from online consumer reviews and ratings. In essence, a word frequency analysis is performed on comments collected from a website such as TripAdvisor, and these frequencies are used to obtain a score for each of the following dimensions:

Room

,

Facilities

,

Surroundings

,

Employees

and

Reliability

. A comparison of scores can be made based on the ratings that consumers give, and/or can be studied over time. The method offers researchers and hotel managers a useful new tool, which can guide quality improvement efforts and help focus marketing communication. In this paper the development of the approach is described, and a short example is presented where the method is applied on a single hotel.

Edward Boon, Michelle Bonera, Alessandro Bigi

Online Review Contents and Their Impact on Three and Four-Star Hotel Reservations: Some Evidence in Italy

Scholars and practitioners in the tourism sector seem to agree that web reputation affects hotel operational performance. This study addresses this issue by analysing the online review contents of 40 (20 four-star and 20 three-star) hotels in the Province of Rimini (Italy). In particular, it questions if and to what extent the positive/negative sense of TripAdvisor reviews influences the online reservations of the hotels considered. The content analysis performed on hotels suggests that traditional core services (like room and interaction with staff) represent key factors in determining customer appreciations and criticism. Panel data analysis, of the same hotels, seems to suggest the presence, to some extent, of a linear relationship between operational hotel performance and online reputation.

Selena Aureli, Renato Medei, Enrico Supino, Claudio Travaglini

Towards a Better Understanding of the Cognitive Destination Image of Euskadi-Basque Country Based on the Analysis of UGC

The user-generated content (UGC) and web 2.0 have allowed substantial changes in the dynamics of the travel and tourism sector. Tourism marketing is conditioned by the importance of the Internet as a channel for promotion and marketing. Thus, UGC and social networks become a valuable source to achieve a proper management of the cognitive image that a visitor can have on a destination. Despite the great importance of the destination image there is not a universally accepted and validated model. The presented research work aims to contribute in the knowledge and understanding of the cognitive destination image of the Basque Country through the UGC. The present work aims to validate an image model of reference by means of digital content. The final goal is to produce the method, which enables to relate the perceived image by visitors with the projected image by marketing strategies driven by the DMO.

Ainhoa Serna, Jon Kepa Gerrikagoitia, Aurkene Alzua

ICT and Travellers’ Behaviour

Frontmatter

Adaptive Strategies to Technological Change: Understanding Travellers Using the Internet for Trip Planning

With recent developments in technology including social media and mobile computing, the Internet offers many tools for today’s travellers. Based upon a large six year study of American travellers’ use of the Internet, this study identifies the strategies travellers develop in response to the complex technological environment over a period of time. The results show that American travellers have adopted six distinct strategies in terms of their behavioural responses to the use of the Internet for travel planning. These strategies are relatively stable and can be described by a relatively limited number of information sources and channels. This study advances our understanding of the impact of ICT on travel behaviour and offers insights for the development of new communication strategies for tourism businesses.

Zheng Xiang, Dan Wang, Daniel R. Fesenmaier

Assessing Structure of Online Channel Use by American Travellers

Understanding the use of online channels for travel planning is one of the most important challenges facing destination marketing organizations (DMOs). The results of this study found that travellers tend to use a small number of online channels and that there is a strong hierarchical pattern in their use. The results also indicated that the use of online channel could help to distinguish four groups of travellers who differ in terms of demographic characteristics, information searching, product purchasing behaviour and trip expenditures. These findings provide an essential guidance regarding potential strategies for designing and implementing an effective communication programs with prospective travellers.

Yeongbae Choe, Daniel R. Fesenmaier

Older Tourists: An Exploratory Study on Online Behaviour

The Internet has reshaped the way consumers can search for and purchase tourism products. While various studies about online behaviour have addressed the ‘Y generation’, little attention has been given to older adults, particularly within the tourism industry. This article investigates older tourists’ online behaviour in an increasingly ageing context (Italy). In particular, the study focuses on past travel behaviour and online experience as antecedents of online purchase intentions. An exploratory research was conducted among a sample of 205 tourists aged 50 years and older. The findings reveal that online travel purchase intention positively depends on online word-of-mouth, previous online travel purchase, and education. In addition, significant behavioural differences emerge between prospective seniors and seniors. This study contributes to fill a gap in tourism literature about older tourists. Moreover, it provides useful insights and practical implications for hospitality and tourism companies willing to approach the senior market.

Vania Vigolo, Ilenia Confente

Analysing the Traveller Activities Network for Strategic Design: A Case Study of Baltimore, MD

Destination management organizations (DMOs) must understand the pattern of traveller activities within a destination and how this creates value in order to design competitive destinations. It is posited in this study that it is useful to conceptualize traveller activities as a value creation network formed by the interactions of visitors and destination attractions and that this network can be measured to understand destination performance and competitiveness. As a case study, this research quantifies and then deconstructs the traveller activities network for the City of Baltimore that is activated as visitors move between destination attractions. The results of this analysis are presented and the ways in which value creation network metrics can inform the strategic design of the destination are discussed. Last, a research agenda to further develop these metrics is outlined.

Jason L. Stienmetz, Daniel R. Fesenmaier

Facebook it: Evaluation of Facebook’s Search Engine for Travel Related Information Retrieval

The internet and its adoption changed the way in which tourists search for information. Due to the high level of information available on the internet, online search has become the major way in which information is accessed. The presence of social media has also strongly modified people’s information retrieval behaviour. Various studies state that online social networks represent an important source for holiday planning. This paper attempts to evaluate holiday related information in a scenario where users are only allowed to use Facebook’s search engine for finding the necessary information. The results indicate that Facebook delivers relevant information about attractions. However, it provides insufficient information quality for the decision making process concerning transportation and accommodation.

Paul Bulencea, Roman Egger

A Literature Framework Analysis of Online Hotel Accommodation Process Factors

The Internet is rapidly becoming the dominant user decision making tool for the hotel accommodation purchase process. This paper critically reviews online hotel accommodation purchase processes literature and proposes a literature framework analysis of online hotel accommodation process factors. The objective of this research is to propose a statistically based framework based on clickstream/log file analytics of both the internal and external influencers of the process. The internal process influencers (the individual themselves, search engines, third parties/social media sites and hotel websites) and the external process influencers (online access devices and user visual interaction) are reviewed before being formulated into proposed framework of the online hotel accommodation process.

Manus Ward, Mathew Shafaghi

Gaming, Gamification and Smart Tourism

Frontmatter

Pervasive Augmented Reality Games to Experience Tourism Destinations

This paper describes the

ExCORA

pervasive game, a mobile experience that aims to engage general public with the Urgull Mountain in San Sebastian, Spain. The game tries to encourage people to visit and explore the natural environment, as well as educate visitors who may visit the mountain, but have no idea of its hidden history. The project explores how pervasive augmented reality games can be used to deliver an engaging tourism experience. The game aims to provide a fun and interactive way to guide participants through different Points of Interest (PoIs), let participants search for unique QR codes to unlock clues and solve mini-games, and augment some objects and PoIs. This paper outlines the design and initial deployment of the game, reporting on the results from a preliminary usability study and discussing initial observations made by visitors.

María Teresa Linaza, Aitor Gutierrez, Ander García

Dublin AR: Implementing Augmented Reality in Tourism

The use of modern technology is becoming a necessity of many destinations to stay competitive and attractive to the modern tourist. A new form of technology that is being used increasingly in the public space is virtual- and Augmented Reality (AR). The aim of this paper is to investigate tourists’ requirements for the development of a mobile AR tourism application in urban heritage. In-depth interviews with 26 international and domestic tourists visiting Dublin city were conducted and thematic analysis was used to analyze the findings of the interviews. The findings suggest that although Augmented Reality has passed the hype stage, the technology is just on the verge of being implemented in a meaningful way in the tourism industry. Furthermore, they reveal that it needs to be designed to serve a specific purpose for the user, while multi-language functionality, ease of use and the capability to personalize the application are among the main requirements that need to be considered in order to attract tourists and encourage regular use. This paper discusses several significant implications for AR Tourism research and practice. Limitations of the study which should be addressed in future research are discussed and recommendations for further research are provided.

Dai-In Han, Timothy Jung, Alex Gibson

Gamification in Tourism

Gamification, as a new topic, is a future trend which can be applied in tourism in many ways to elicit motivation and behaviour change. This paper is a conceptual work on gamification in tourism discussing the concept on how game design elements and game thinking can be applied in a tourism context. Based on that, it defines tourism gamification and identifies intrinsic and extrinsic motivation elements that can be used in gamification in order to influence consumer engagement, customer loyalty, brand awareness, and user experience in tourism areas. Best practice examples show where this innovative concept of gamification is already applied in tourism. The paper also outlines limitations of gamification and makes suggestions for future research.

Feifei Xu, Jessika Weber, Dimitrios Buhalis

Expectation of Travel Experiences with Wearable Computing Devices

Based on a content analysis of textual data containing people’s ideas to use wearable computing devices, this paper identified five patterns of personal motivations to use wearable devices for travel and tourism experiences. They are exploration, adventure tourism, travel documentation, travel reporting, and positive transformation. These patterns suggest a potential transformation in tourists’ behaviour due to perceived new ways of interactions with technology and with the near surroundings. The different features and functionalities that are unique to wearable technology trigger changes in three areas: the shift from tourists to explorers, an explosion of first-person visual travel narratives, and more social travel supported by real-time connectivity. Further, the findings also suggest a potential shift in terms of how personal technology is situated in human experience, from mediation to embodiment.

Iis Tussyadiah

Smart Tourism Destinations

The rapid development of technologies introduces smartness to all organisations and communities. The Smart Tourism Destinations (STD) concept emerges from the development of Smart Cities. With technology being embedded on all organisations and entities, destinations will exploit synergies between ubiquitous sensing technology and their social components to support the enrichment of tourist experiences. By applying smartness concept to address travellers’ needs before, during and after their trip, destinations could increase their competitiveness level. This paper aims to take advantage from the development of Smart Cities by conceptualising framework for Smart Tourism Destinations through exploring tourism applications in destination and addressing both opportunities and challenges it possessed.

Dimitrios Buhalis, Aditya Amaranggana

NFC Smart City: Cities of the Future—A Scenario Technique Application

In order to be prepared for challenges caused by globalization, urbanization, climate change, socio-demographic changes, new values and norms in societies, so-called Smart City concepts have been developed. These cities implement Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) to enhance life quality, efficiency of mobility, economy and sustainability. This article intends to comprehend the symptoms which indicate the future implication of NFC technology in its role within Smart City concepts. Furthermore, the future scenarios for stakeholders in tourism destinations are illuminated by applying a scenario technique. Within this context, this study explores the role of system theory in the scenario processes in order to comprehend whether scenarios can be regarded as systems. The results of the study clarify the factors that influence the implementation of the concept. Moreover, they suggest that a secret leader in the ecosystem is crucial for the concept’s success. The scenarios described contribute to the strategic orientation for future directions of tourism destinations and their stakeholders.

Emre Ronay, Roman Egger

The Impact of Potential Travellers’ Media Cultural Experiences

Cultural exposure to a particular country through media affects people’s preference of that foreign country and may ultimately be a function of behaviour of that country’s cultural products, e.g., travelling that country. Media culture has been recognized as a major reason why people would like to visit a destination. However, media culture in tourism context has been rare, drawing upon media cultural exposure, we propose a research model and attempt to answer how do socio-cultural factors affect individual’s how intention to visit a travel destination site? In particular, this study examines the impacts of potential travellers’ media cultural exposure in three different language use groups (i.e., English, Japanese, and Chinese) and their perception of the media cultural experience on their intention to visit the actual offline travel site (i.e., South Korea). Theoretical and practical implications of the results will be discussed.

Chulmo Koo, Youhee Joun, Heejeong Han, Namho Chung

Website Evaluation

Frontmatter

Website Development in Tourism and Hospitality: The Case of China

The development of Internet technology has not only influenced tourism and hospitality operations, but also provided new research opportunities for scholars. The last decade has witnessed the continuous growth in publications of website development conducted in the context of tourism and hospitality in China. After reviewing these studies, this research found that in line with relevant research in other countries, scholars in the context of China also examined two main topics of website evaluation and Internet users’ perceptions of either websites of tourism organizations or third party websites (e.g. blogs, video sharing websites). In addition, content analysis and questionnaire survey were the main data collection method. Some issues of concern were also identified as inconsistency existed between studies in an earlier stage and those conducted in more recent stage.

Liang Wang, Rob Law

Measuring the Global Readiness of Airline Websites: Are They Speaking the World’s Languages?

As global companies, airlines need to be able to cater to global audiences, particularly through online channels. The Global Readiness Index (GRI) has been developed to quantitatively measure the level of preparedness of online companies to service diverse international audiences. The concept has previously been tested on general ecommerce and hotel websites. This study modifies and extends the GRI by adopting a weighted approach for the language parameter to take into account the relative importance of alternative language versions in different markets. The resulting model is tested using a random sample of the websites of 100 airlines.

Peter O’Connor, Zaheer A. Shaik

Digital Divide in Tourism: An Exploration of the Digital Divide Through Quantitative Analysis of the World’s National Tourism Organisations Websites

This paper tests hypotheses supporting a theory linking competitiveness of tourism destinations to the digital divide. National Tourism Organisations (NTOs) websites across the world were first evaluated for quality. The website quality scores were then analysed against destination digital access index categories to establish the validity of the hypotheses supporting the theory. Most inaccessible website cases were from low digital access destinations. NTO websites scores had weak positive correlations with the respective country indices (0.21–0.25). High digital access destinations had significantly higher NTO website mean scores than the other destination categories. The mean differences were not significant for site attractiveness, trip planner assistance, and ease of contact factors. To attract high digital access tourists, organisations in low digital access destinations must improve their web accessibility, ease of navigation, and marketing factors. High digital access tourists most likely originate from countries with high digital connectivity, concentrated in the Europe region.

Shongwe Sifiso

An Analysis of the Key Factors Affecting the Success of a Re-Launched Destination Marketing Website in the UK

This paper presents a case study of the re-launch of a DMO website in the UK. It evaluates the perceived usability of the new website and identifies the key factors affecting customers’ intention to use the new website. A large-scale online survey was developed to understand a number of issues relating to usability (e.g. aesthetics, effectiveness) and psychological and behavioural indicators (e.g. perceived trustworthiness and intent to use). Both quantitative and qualitative data was analysed to understand users’ perceptions, behaviour and attitudes towards the re-launched website. A Structural Equation Model (SEM) was developed to identify the factors affecting their intention to use the new website. The SEM model identified the impact of a variety of factors on intention to use and the descriptive analysis, using both qualitative and quantitative data, highlights further areas of research.

Philip Alford, Yanqing Duan, Jacqui Taylor

The Website Quality of the Regional Tourist Boards in the Alps: Ten Years Later

To evaluate the quality of the websites of the regional tourist boards was a main objective of a large triennial research project on tourism in the Alps started in 2000. In that context an in-depth evaluation of the official websites of the Alpine regions highlighted a number of best practices and critical issues as well. The evaluation model developed for the study has been updated and applied on the same regional websites to check their evolution. This chapter presents the main results of a cross-country analysis, comparing them to those obtained 10 years ago. The conclusion from the data is that almost all the websites have enhanced their quality performances. However, there are still large margins of improvement and the adopted method allows to identify the website quality dimensions on which a regional tourist board could focus its interventions.

Luisa Mich

Hotel Websites, Web 2.0, Web 3.0 and Online Direct Marketing: The Case of Austria

Direct communication with customers in order to increase sales has become one of the most important marketing methods used by small, medium and large hotels alike. With the rapid development of ICT technologies, including the Internet, Web, and recently Web 2.0 and 3.0, the number of channels in which hotels can interact directly with customers has grown even larger. Being visible on all these channels and using these technologies has now become a requirement if effective marketing and massive direct sales are to be achieved. In this chapter, we perform a rigorous empirical analysis of the advances towards the employment of Web 2.0 and 3.0 technologies in the tourism domain. We begin by presenting our methodology, including criteria and evaluation metrics, and follow by analysing the uptake of Web 2.0 and 3.0 technologies for Austrian hotels. As this chapter demonstrates, despite the benefits of new Web technology for online marketing, the hotels in Austria are not using these technologies and do not follow the online developments. Since employing their use is a relatively cheap undertaking, a severe competence gap seems to emerge either directly in the touristic service industry, or in the industry providing them with their on-line presence.

Ioannis Stavrakantonakis, Ioan Toma, Anna Fensel, Dieter Fensel

Measuring the Perceived Image of Lithuania Through its Destination Management Organization Website

It is generally acknowledged that the image of a tourist destination plays a significant role in the destination selection process. Consumers, while searching for destination information tend to choose a destination with a strong and favourable image. In order to design appropriate marketing strategies, it is therefore of paramount importance for a destination management organization (DMO) to understand what image exists in the minds of its potential consumers. In addition, it is vital to understand how the perceived image changes, depending on the communication channel being used. The following research aims to investigate how the destination image of Lithuania changed after the exposure to the DMO website. In order to carry out the research, a quasi-experimental design was used. The following research reveals that exposure to the DMO website facilitates change in one’s perception of the destination image, particularly in its cognitive and unique components. The research findings contribute to the improvement of the online marketing strategy of the Lithuania’s DMO.

Stela Dragova, Kristina Petrovskaya, Roman Egger

Examining Online Brand Image Dimensions from Hotel Managers and Customers Perspectives in Relation to Herzberg’s Two-Factor Theory

Given the scarcity of research regarding online brand image, this study is an attempt to generate an understanding of this topic in the hospitality industry from a holistic point of view. In order to gather this information, this study has carried out a detailed analysis of the brand attributes and marketing communication that determine hotel brand image in an online context. Semi-structured interviews with hotel marketing managers and customers were conducted and key dimensions underlying the differences between their perspectives were identified in relation to Herzberg’s two-factor theory (1959). The results reveal that online brand attributes such as ease of use and content are seen as hygiene factors that impact customer perception, whilst site appearance and electronic word-of-mouth are motivational factors that hotel managers need to address in order to create a positive brand image in an online hotel context.

Duangthida Nunthapirat, Andrew Lockwood, Brigitte Stangl, Hesham Al-Sabbahy

ICT Adoption

Frontmatter

Listening to CEOs: A New Perspective to Study Technology Adoption in Hotels

Information and communication technology (ICT) continues to change the nature of contemporary tourism. ICT is particularly relevant to the hospitality industry, since it is regarded a main source of competitive advantage. Yet, reports published recently reveal that tourism is behind in technology adoption than other industrial sectors. Some works have analysed technology adoption in tourism. However, most come from other fields and the few examples relating the tourism sector are outdated. Thus, it is necessary to identify the reasons why technology adoption remains low in hotels and to find out the drivers of technology adoption in this sector. This paper analyses the data gathered from interviews and focus groups carried out with hoteliers. This phenomenological approach provided evidence on the problems with current technology, discovered some barriers and drivers of technology adoption and identified some ICT priorities.

Sofia Reino, Carlos Lamsfus, Hugo Salas, Ortzi Torices, Aurkene Alzua-Sorzabal

Barriers Affecting Social Media Adoption in Finnish Tourism Businesses

Social media has affected the ways tourism companies do business and companies have been eager to adopt it as part of their marketing strategy. However, there still exists a large number of tourism companies that completely neglect the use of social media. This study explores the reasons why some tourism companies do not adopt social media. First, tourism companies are interviewed about the reasons why they are not using social media. Second, the results from the interviews are transformed into quantitative survey on barriers to adopt social media. The results show that there are three main barriers for not using social media: no resources, concerns about social media and no need to use social media. The results also show some explanations for the differences between companies.

Juho Pesonen, Jenni Mikkonen, Marika Makkonen, Antti Honkanen

Prioritisation of Key Performance Indicators in an Evaluation Framework for Determining the Economic Value and Effectiveness of Internet Room Diagramming Solutions by the Application of AHP

Previous studies suggest the effectiveness of eBusiness applications such as Room Diagramming Solutions could be monitored through a hierarchical evaluation framework in the post-adoption stage. However, an evaluation model should not only indicate what is important to be measured but also each measurement should be weighted. This study uses an Analytic Hierarchy Process survey conducted with venue operators in the U.S. chain hotel systems for generation of the priorities and weightings of the criteria which had been previously identified. Perceived stakeholder and social pressure was weighted as the most important indicator. Information and Communication Technologies impact on customer satisfaction was considered with high priority, and which echoes relevant research. The criteria prioritised could be adopted to conduct further research concerning performance measurements such as the ICT Balanced Scorecard for strategic management. The research approaches used could also be applied to performance measurements for innovative ICT applications such as social media.

Kuan-Wen Lin, Andrew J. Frew, Joe Goldblatt

Study on Factors to Adopt Mobile Payment for Tourism E-Business: Based on Valence Theory and Trust Transfer Theory

By using the valence theory and trust transfer theory, this study builds a mobile payment adoption model where consumers shift the payment from tourism websites to mobile apps. The study uses structural equation model based on 323 questionnaires data to test the impact of the trust in on-line payment on initial trust in mobile payment as well as the impacts of consumers trust, and its positive and negative utilities on consumers’ behaviour intention to adopt mobile payment. The findings of the empirical study indicate that: (1) users’ trust in on-line payment via tourism website significantly impacts the initial trust in mobile payment; (2) perceived usefulness and perceived ease-of-use and consumers’ innovativeness positively and significantly impact the users’ intention to adopt mobile payment; (3) initial trust in mobile payment by increasing perceived usefulness has significant impacts on users’ intention to adopt mobile payment, both directly and indirectly.

Jianqing Huang, Yahui Li, Hailin Li

eLearning

Frontmatter

eLearning Courses Offered by Tourism Destinations: Factors Affecting Participation and Awareness Among British and Indian Travel Agents

Destination Management Organizations are using ICTs not only to reach individual tourists, but also to educate through eLearning courses travel agents on how to better sell tourism destinations. While the “supply side” of such training offers has been mapped, its “demand side” is still under-researched. In particular, awareness of and participation in destinational eLearning courses on the side of travel agents need to be investigated in order to provide a clearer picture of this area within eTourism environment. In this research, 462 British and Indian travel agents have been surveyed through phone interviews, in order to understand which factors influence their participation in and awareness of the existence of destinational eLearning courses. Results show that country where travel agents work has a significant influence on participation and awareness, while type of agency plays a significant role only on participation; gender, age and level of instruction do not play any relevant role.

Nadzeya Kalbaska, Lorenzo Cantoni

The Property Management System: The View from the Front Desk on Training and Performance

This paper examines the critical role of the Property Management System (PMS). The PMS is the key information technology for hotels, though these PMS systems are not exploited to their full potential. Previous research has identified a lack of training as a key barrier to full exploitation, thus, this paper investigates in-depth the role of PMS training. A qualitative approach using in-depth interviews is undertaken to give insights into why training budgets and time taken for training are low. The interviews with front desk managers show that front desk personnel themselves conduct most of the training and that specific budget allocated for front desk training is limited, training days are minimal and not fully integrated into IT budgets or strategy.

Hilary Catherine Murphy

Sharing Internship Experience on the Internet: A Study of Tourism and Hotel Management College Students

The major objective of the current research is to compare the use of two online media, namely online-personal (platforms for communicating with someone the senders know like email and social networking sites) and online-collective (platforms for communicating with someone unknown to the senders like weblogs and Internet forums) for sharing internship experience by the tourism and hotel management college students. This study also investigates whether the use of these media vary with gender and Internet usage. Drawing on the findings from a self-administered survey with tourism and hotel management college students in a Hong Kong university, this study reveals that respondents are more likely to use online-personal media than online-collective media. Online-collective media are also found to be prevalent among males. While knowledge about interns’ experience is paramount for the improvement of internship program, internship officers and industry practitioners are recommended to ask interns to provide social networking site accounts.

Lawrence Hoc Nang Fong, Hee “Andy” Lee, Chris Luk, Daniel Leung, Rob Law

Distribution and Decision Support Systems

Frontmatter

Substitution Effects Across Hotel Distribution Channels

The evolution of distribution channels in the hospitality sector has followed different paths over time depending on the technology used. This research analyses the evolution of market shares of different clusters or generations of distribution channels using multi-generation diffusion methods. The data for the study are a series of annual member surveys by Hotelleriesuisse since 2002 which monitored the evolution of market shares of 15 individual distribution channels. We grouped the distribution channels into three generations starting with the pre-World-Wide-Web era; the middle generation comprises Internet-based direct booking channels and the latest generation includes online intermediaries such as Online Travel Agencies and social media. The results of our analysis show substitution effects across different clusters of distribution channels and shed light on the dynamics of competing sales funnels. From the practitioner’s point of view, the study gives insight into the future evolution of the distribution mix. This evolution is crucial for hotel marketing strategies as the Internet is the most powerful marketing tool in the hospitality industry today.

Roland Schegg, Miriam Scaglione

Online Auctions for Selling Accommodation Packages: A Readiness-Intensity-Impact Analysis

Since the advent of the Internet online auctions offer new opportunities to effectively sell also complex service products. Unsurprisingly, a small but constantly growing number of suppliers have recently started to successfully auction off travel and tourism products through online auction platforms, like eBay. However, so far, tourism research lacks adoption and impact studies concerning online auctions. Thus, the paper at hand, firstly, identifies the factors that determine the adoption of online auctions within the hotel sector. Secondly, by referring to Zhu and Kraemer, the proposed approach also elucidates how the use of online auctions affects hotel performance. Data gathered in the course of an online survey targeting the Austrian hotel sector is analysed by using the Partial Least Square (PLS) technique and logistic regression.

Matthias Fuchs, Wolfram Höpken, Alexander Eybl, Andreas Flöck

Toward a Characterisation of the Maturity of Organisational Online Capabilities: The Case of Hotel Distribution in Morocco

Applying the resource-based view (RBV), this article examines two organisational capabilities in the hotel distribution sector: strategic alignment and dynamic capabilities. Exploratory interviews conducted with business managers (BMs) and technology managers (TMs) from the hotel sector allowed to operationalise three constructs used in this research: the maturity of strategic online alignment, the maturity of dynamic online capabilities, and organisational performance. A subsequent questionnaire survey administered among BMs and TMs from 101 hotels in Morocco then allowed to validate the three hypotheses of this research: H1 Strategic alignment maturity has a direct and positive effect on the maturity of dynamic online capabilities; H2 The maturity of dynamic online capabilities is significantly linked to organisational performance; H3 The maturity of strategic online alignment is significantly linked to organisational performance.

Larbi Safaa, François Bédard

Assessing the Visibility of Hotels on Smartphones: A Case Study of Hotels in Hong Kong

Although smartphones are gradually becoming the primary Internet access device for travellers to research and purchase hotel accommodations, the readiness of the hotel industry to the mobile consumerism era has not been fully examined. Using hotels in Hong Kong as a case study, this exploratory study assesses the visibility of hotels on smartphones by: (1) examining the visibility of all Hong Kong hotel websites on smartphones using different operating systems; and (2) examining the availability of smartphone apps developed by all Hong Kong hotels in different smartphone application stores. The empirical findings suggest that more than half of Hong Kong hotels have optimised their websites for iOS- and Android-operated smartphones. Nevertheless, only a handful of hotels developed smartphone apps for connecting with customers. The Chi Square test results demonstrate that star rating and brand affiliation are associated with the visibility of hotels on smartphones. Managerial implications are discussed.

Daniel Leung, Hee “Andy” Lee, Lawrence Hoc Nang Fong, Rob Law

Mobile Devices as a Tourism Distribution Channel: Perceptions of Visitors to National Parks in South Africa

The use of mobile devices in the tourism industry is growing and travellers’ intentions or willingness to use them for specific purposes need to be recognised. This study looks at visitors’ support of South African National Parks’ (SANParks) mobile website for booking purposes, their level of satisfaction with the interaction and their propensity to adopt a mobile application, should SANParks provide one. It also investigates what visitors deem important in mobile devices. The results confirmed that mobile devices as a booking channel for SANParks is still in its initial stages, with relatively few visitors having used the SANParks mobile website or any type of mobile application. The results also indicated the level of satisfaction that visitors experience with the SANParks mobile website, and features they deem important when using mobile applications for accommodation bookings.

Anneli Douglas, Berendien Lubbe

A Web Platform to Generate and Deliver Mobile Web Contents Without Programming Skills

The massive adoption of smartphones and the increasing popularity of QR codes to access mobile web sites are motivating the creation of new tools to generate these kinds of contents. This is especially important in information-intensive industries such as the tourism sector, where visitors consume tourism information and services everywhere with their smartphones. This way, it is essential to empower tourism stakeholders with tools in order to be self-sufficient to generate tourism web contents adapted to mobile devices. This paper presents a web platform designed for people without programming skills. The platform allows the creation and delivery of mobile web contents using QR codes. The results of the user evaluation process are discussed and some guidelines to develop these kinds of toolkits are detailed as well.

David Martín, Ortzi Torices, Hugo Salas, Carlos Lamsfus, Aurkene Alzua-Sorzabal

Constructing a Data Warehouse Based Decision Support Platform for China Tourism Industry

Rapid development of China’s tourism industry has brought new challenges to tourism public management and service systems. How to adapt to highly complex tourism market changes, to formulate reasonable development strategies, to meet the demand of independent, flexible, personalized tourism service requirements, and to acquire long-term sustainable development and maintenance of the tourism industry have become major issues for developing the current tourism industry in China. The big data based concept has provided research ideas and solutions for the innovation of tourism public management and service systems. A decision-making support and data analysis platform based on data warehousing is put forward in this paper; business intelligence is introduced into the platform as well. The framework of the platform, some key steps of implementation, and application cases are discussed in the paper. Through our research, it is expected to provide a resource for other countries who are trying to build a similar data warehouse application for their tourism industry.

Xiangjie Qiao, Lingyun Zhang, Nao Li, Wei Zhu

Destination Inspiration Using eTourism Tool

In rural areas tourism is often seen as an opportunity for economic development. Policymakers are searching for instruments to measure values of regions for tourism development. As landscape can be an important unique selling point in rural areas, understanding land use preferences of tourists is essential to describe the value of rural areas. For the tourism industry it is important to know if there are similarities among the tourists in terms of landscape preferences to invest in or promote certain regions. The goal of this project is to collect data of landscape preferences for policymakers and the tourism industry. Information was gathered using geographical data in a Destination Discovering System within

www.myplacetobe.eu

website, where visitors can discover their favourite holiday destinations in Europe according to their preferences. About 7,000 personalized maps are made by more than 3,300 unique visitors. Forest is the most preferred landscape type.

Martin Goossen, Henk Meeuwsen, Jappe Franke, Arjen de Jong Alterra
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