Rethinking Loyalty

Robert Douglas McKercher, Basak Denizci Guillet, Erica Ng

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

113 Citations (Scopus)


This paper argues that loyalty research in tourism may need to be reconsidered to account for the unique features of tourism. In particular, it explores three concepts: . vertical loyalty hierarchy where tourists may display loyalty at different tiers in the tourism system simultaneously (i.e. to a travel agent and an airline); . horizontal loyalties, where tourists may be loyal to more than one provider at the same tier the tourism system (i.e. to more than one hotel brand) and; . experiential loyalty or loyalty to certain holiday styles. These ideas are tested through in-depth interviews with a purposive sample of frequent tourists. Vertical and experiential loyalty were supported, while less evidence of horizontal loyalty was noted.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)708-734
Number of pages27
JournalAnnals of Tourism Research
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2012


  • Consumer behaviour
  • Destination
  • Loyalty
  • Loyalty hierarchy
  • Satisfaction
  • Tourism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Development
  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management


Dive into the research topics of 'Rethinking Loyalty'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this