Assessing servicescape of cruise tourism: the perception of Chinese tourists

Jiaying Lyu, Liang Hu, Kam Hung, Zhenxing Mao

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

27 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Purpose: This study aims to develop a comprehensive framework for assessing servicescape of cruise tourism and provides practical suggestions to improve the perception of Chinese tourists toward cruise servicescape. Design/methodology/approach: A multistage mixed-method design was used in the sequence of in-depth interviews (n = 18), expert panel (n = 5), on-site survey (n = 317) and online survey (n = 300). Grounded theory, exploratory factor analysis and confirmatory factor analysis were used to assess cruise tourism servicescape. Findings: The cruise tourism servicescape construct was identified with six dimensions: facilities and décor, natural scenery, onshore excursions, onboard entertainment, social interactions and dining services. These dimensions were in the order of importance, as perceived by Chinese tourists. Practical implications: Cruise lines operating large ships can be more attractive to Chinese consumers than luxury cruise lines operating smaller vessels. Cruise operators can enhance perceived servicescape by integrating natural and built environments, such as air, sea and on-shore tours. Services provided by foreign crew members may serve as a strong selling point for Chinese tourists. Consumer-to-consumer activities may be introduced into the Chinese market. Cruise operators may also provide quality meal service in terms of variety, quality and flexibility. Originality/value: Considering that minimal research has been conducted on cruise servicescape scale development, this study serves as the first empirical research effort in this regard. The findings also identify the specific needs of Chinese tourists, which is a fast-growing market in the cruise industry.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2556-2572
Number of pages17
JournalInternational Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management
Volume29
Issue number10
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2017

Keywords

  • China
  • Cruise travel
  • Measurement scale development
  • Servicescape

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management

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