Travel motivation: Linking theory to practice

Songshan Huang, Cathy Hui-chun Hsu

Research output: Journal article publicationReview articleAcademic researchpeer-review

47 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to review the relevant literature on travel motivation and provides a scenario-based discussion on the applications of travel motivation theories in the industry practice. The paper offers an invaluable practical interpretation of travel motivation and related management issues. Design/methodology/approach – A comprehensive literature review on travel motivation is conducted to acknowledge the major theories. Two scenarios are presented and discussed by linking two motivation conceptual schemes, Maslow's hierarchy of needs theory and Plog's allocentrism/psychocentrism model, to practical issues in travel management. Findings – The literature review discloses that travel motivation theories have evolved over time. By linking theories to industry practice, the paper advocates that travel managers be more conscious of travelers' internal psychological needs when designing travel services/products. Originality/value – This paper offers a good understanding of travel motivation by discussing theoretical applications in real-world situations.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)287-295
Number of pages9
JournalInternational Journal of Culture, Tourism and Hospitality Research
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 9 Oct 2009


  • Tourism management
  • Travel

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management


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