Why Chinese travelers use WeChat to make hotel choice decisions: A uses and gratifications theory perspective

GAMAGE, Thilini Chathurika, TAJEDDINI, Kayhan and TAJEDDINI, Omid (2021). Why Chinese travelers use WeChat to make hotel choice decisions: A uses and gratifications theory perspective. Journal of Global Scholars of Marketing Science.

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Official URL: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/21639...
Link to published version:: https://doi.org/10.1080/21639159.2021.1961599


WeChat, a Chinese multi-purpose messaging, social media, and mobile payment app, is an emerging social media platform that has been integrated into the daily lives of Chinese people, including travel. However, despite the growing proliferation of WeChat, surprisingly, little attention has been paid to the gratifications obtained by Chinese travelers when using WeChat in travel-related decision-making. Adopting the well-grounded Uses and Gratifications Theory (UGT), this exploratory research paper aims to address this void in prior literature and identify why and how Chinese millennial travelers use WeChat to make hotel choice decisions. Findings stemmed from the semi-structured interviews using a combination of purposive and snowball sampling approaches with eighteen WeChat users reveals that hotel choice decisions through WeChat are influenced by various social, process, and content gratifications. As indicated in our findings, hotels in China should be aware of gratifications obtained by travelers in stimulating them to utilize WeChat in the hotel selection process. Further, our study contributes to extant UGT literature by emphasizing that it has specific relevance and should be given more prominence within tourism, hospitality, and social media literature.

Item Type: Article
Identification Number: https://doi.org/10.1080/21639159.2021.1961599
Depositing User: Justine Gavin
Date Deposited: 28 Sep 2021 11:49
Last Modified: 01 Mar 2023 01:18
URI: https://shura.shu.ac.uk/id/eprint/29106

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