Investigating the Influence of Information on Memorable Tourism Experiences
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AbstractThis thesis examined the influence of information via top-down and bottom-up processes on the evaluation of memorable experiences (MEs) in tourism. The first portion of the thesis contributed to the theoretical concept of MEs from an autobiographical memory perspective, and developed a theoretical scale to identify and measure elements of autobiographical memory formation and recollection in tourism experiences. The findings showed a four-factor ME model: Affect, Personal Growth, Bonding, and Reflection. The second portion of the thesis examined the influence of information on the evaluation of MEs using the ME scale developed. The findings showed that a tourist’s ME evaluation was only affected when information about the destination was presented before the experience. When information was presented after the experience, tourists appeared to let their experiences dictate their final ME evaluations and did not reinterpret their experiences to align with the information presented about the destination. Together, these findings suggested that information could influence the formation, rather than the retrospective evaluation of tourism experiences. Finally, the last portion of the thesis presented theoretical and managerial implications as well as limitations and areas for future research.
Haskayne School of Business