Guidebook use by Japanese tourists: a qualitative study of Australia inbound travellers

King, Brian, Nishimura, Sachiko and Waryszak, Robert (2006) Guidebook use by Japanese tourists: a qualitative study of Australia inbound travellers. International Journal of Tourism Research, 8 (1). pp. 13-26. ISSN 1099-2340


This qualitative investigation into guidebook use reports on in-depth interviews conducted with 26 Japanese individuals and one couple who had visited Australia during the five previous years. Focussing on the stages before, during and after travel the research framework was based on Vogt and Fesenmaier’s model of information needs (1998). It was found that functional needs were the dominant influences during the prior to travel phase, with some non-functional needs, (hedonic, aesthetic, and innovation) also being influential. During the travel phase, only functional needs were evident. Some respondents were identified as being deliberate non-users of guidebooks. The variable “tourist type” was found to be helpful for distinguishing between users and non-users and for identifying those with functional needs. The use of guidebooks by those whose needs are both functional and non-functional may be unaffected by this variable. When the attitudes of those who actively dislike guidebooks and those who hesitate to use them are aggregated, a view emerges of guidebooks as a symbol of standardised tourism.

Item type Article
Subjects Historical > RFCD Classification > 350000 Commerce, Management, Tourism and Services
Historical > Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > School of Hospitality Tourism and Marketing
Keywords guidebook, extended information use, qualitative study, Japanese tourists
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