Understanding tourists' holiday destination choices through the construct of perceived value

Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis

Abstract

Marketing scholars are increasingly getting interested in the concept of perceived value as a major driving force behind consumer purchase behaviour. However, the existing studies on perceived value have primarily focused on consumer goods and service markets with a very limited number of scholars exploring the impact of value on consumer purchase behaviour in the context of holiday destination choice and travel. This study aims to fill this gap.The overarching aim of the study was to get a comprehensive understanding of the value formation process and its relationships with other important marketing constructs. Four objectives were set in order to achieve the above-mentioned aim.The first objective of the research focused on the development of a valid and reliable way of measuring the perceived value construct. The study adopted a multidimensional approach where the perceived value is understood as a trade-off between its two sub-constructs: a) perceived benefits and b) perceived sacrifices. Based on this understanding of the construct, the scale development process focused on three key areas: 1) dimensionality of the perceived benefits, 2) dimensionality of the perceived sacrifices, and 3) conceptualisation and operationalisation of a trade-off between the perceived benefits and sacrifices. The scale development process strictly followed the works of Churchill'€™s (1979), Malhotra and Birks (2003), and DeVellis (2012) who provided a thorough step-by-step guide on how to develop a multi-item measurement scale. The process consisted of a number of qualitative and quantitative stages. The scale was pilot tested as well as cross-validated.The outcome of the process was a valid and reliable perceived value measurement scale developed specifically for the context of the international holiday destination choice.The second objective of the study explored the relationships of the perceived value with its key antecedents using moderator variables. The study confirmed that the travel motivation, attitude towards the destination (utilitarian and hedonic) and information sources (traditional, personal and digital) have a strong positive direct impact on tourists’ perception of value. However, the moderated linear regression analysis showed that some of the direct effects of antecedents are not as strong, and their direct impact to a large degree is moderated through the interaction terms of other moderator variables. Furthermore, the conducted Subgroup Analysis revealed that tourists are not a homogeneous group and there are significant differences in the way they perceive value of a holiday destination.The third objective of the study focused on the possibility of using the perceived value construct as a predictor of tourists'€™ travel behaviour. The analysis confirmed that the perceived value is a significant, positive predictor of the tourists'€™ actual travel/purchase behaviour.The final objective of the study focused on applying the Theory of Planned Behaviour (TPB) in the context of tourism and international holiday destination travel. The analysis of the TPB model confirmed that the attitude towards behaviour and the perceived behavioural control are positive and significant predictors of the behavioural intention. However, the social norm failed to have a significant direct impact on behavioural intention. Additionally, unlike theorised by the TPB, the empirical evidence did not support the hypothesis that the behavioural intention and perceived behavioural control have a significant direct impact on tourists'€™ actual travel/purchase behaviour.Furthermore, within the scope of this objective, the comparative analysis of predictive abilities of the TPB and perceived value was conducted, as well as, an attempt was made to enhance the predictive ability of the TPB by integrating the perceived value construct within its framework. Th
Date of Award1 Jan 2016
LanguageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • University Of Strathclyde
SupervisorSpiros Gounaris (Supervisor) & Michael Marck (Supervisor)

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