Title

Applying Quan and Wang's structural model of the tourist experience: a Zimbabwean netnography of food tourism

Document Type

Article

Publication details

Mkono, M, Markwell, K & Wilson, E 2013, 'Applying Quan and Wang's structural model of the tourist experience: a Zimbabwean netnography of food tourism', Tourism Management Perspectives, vol. 5, pp. 68-74.

Published version available from:

http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.tmp.2012.10.007

Peer Reviewed

Peer-Reviewed

Abstract

This study applies Quan and Wang (2004) structural model of the tourist experience to a netnographic analysis of the food experience offered in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe. The food experience in this context is conceptualised both as a peak experience, as well as simply an extension of daily life. Netnography makes use of tourists' “word-of-mouse”, taking advantage of an evergrowing cybercommunity which specifically relates to food tourism. Two hundred and eighty-five online reviews of five Victoria Falls restaurants were analysed. Thematic findings illustrate the nuanced nature of food experiences, including tourists' interest in authenticity, as well as food neophilia and food neophobia. The study also demonstrates the potential of Internet-based, qualitative research methods to illuminate current understanding of tourist experience, while assessing Quan and Wang's model in terms of its potential and usefulness in modelling the touristic food experience.