ognizant Communication Corporation

INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY & TOURISM

ABSTRACTS
VOLUME 8, NUMBERS 3/4

Information Technology & Tourism, Vol. 8, pp. 149-159
1098-3058/06 $60.00 + .00
Copyright © 2006 Cognizant Comm. Corp.
Printed in the USA. All rights reserved.

An Exploratory Analysis of Traveler Preferences for Airline Website Content

Pierre Benckendorff

School of Business, James Cook University, Townsville QLD. 4811, Australia

Structural changes in the aviation sector have accelerated customer acceptance of the Internet as a suitable medium for booking airline travel. This research explores the preferences of airline travelers for various content attributes on airline websites. The study was conducted by surveying 903 respondents from Australia and New Zealand using an online questionnaire. The results indicate that airline website attributes can be organized into at least seven factors. Of these, basic "look and book" features are viewed as most important by customers. The article groups website attributes into basic factors, pivotal factors, and supplementary factors based on their likely impact on customer satisfaction. The results provide an indication of the website features most likely to attract and retain airline customers.

Key words: Airline; Website; Internet; Preferences; Expectations; Attitudes

Address correspondence to Pierre Benckendorff, School of Business, James Cook University, Townsville QLD. 4811, Australia. Tel: +61 7 4781 4590; Fax: +61 7 4781 4019; E-mail: Pierre.Benckendorff@jcu.edu.au




Information Technology & Tourism, Vol. 8, pp. 161-177
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Copyright © 2006 Cognizant Comm. Corp.
Printed in the USA. All rights reserved.

Investigating the Evolution of Hotel Internet Adoption

Jamie Murphy,1 Roland Schegg,2 and Doina Olaru1

1School of Business, University of Western Australia, Crawley, WA 6009, Australia
2Institute for Economics & Tourism, University of Applied Sciences Valais, 3960 Sierre, Switzerland

This article draws upon Diffusion of Innovations and Configurational theories to investigate how website features and email responses by 200 Swiss hotels reflect evolving Internet adoption. Complementary multivariate and artificial neural network (ANN) techniques support classifying the hotels into three clusters based on their website features. These clusters and the results of a structural equation model confirm that Internet adoption evolves from static to dynamic use, as organizations add website features and provide quality responses to customer emails. Practically, differences among these clusters suggest caution in adopting some website features. Academically, the study extends diffusion research and introduces metrics, particularly domain name age and quality email responses, for future research of organizational Internet adoption. Finally, the study illustrates how ANNs complement and help overcome limitations of multivariate techniques.

Key words: Organizational diffusion of innovations; Configurational theory; Internet; Website evaluation; Domain names; Artificial neural networks

Address correspondence to Jamie Murphy, School of Business, University of Western Australia, Crawley, WA 6009, Australia. Tel: +61 8 6488 1979; Fax: +61 8 6488 1055; E-mail: jmurphy@biz.uwa.edu.au




Information Technology & Tourism, Vol. 8, pp. 179-195
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Copyright © 2006 Cognizant Comm. Corp.
Printed in the USA. All rights reserved.

Assessing Use Acceptance and Satisfaction Toward Online Travel Agencies

Yoon C. Cho and Jerome Agrusa

College of Business Administration, Hawaii Pacific University, Honolulu, HI, USA

This article first considers what factors affect ease of use and usefulness and then how ease of use and usefulness affect attitudes toward online travel agencies and customer satisfaction. This study applied classification of different user groups based on their degree of involvement to measure different levels of perceived ease of use and usefulness. The results of this study found that customers' attitudes towards online travel agencies significantly impact the level of e-satisfaction. The findings of the study contribute to the development of the uses and gratification theory by applying it to users' attitudes toward online travel agencies. Further, this study provides implications and offers suggestions to e-businesses dealing with travel agencies.

Key words: Online travel agencies; e-Satisfaction; Ease of use; Usefulness

Address correspondence to Jerome Agrusa, Ph.D., C.H.E., Professor, Travel Industry Management, College of Business Administration, Hawaii Pacific University, 1164 Bishop Street, Suite 912, Honolulu, HI 96813, USA. Tel: 808-544-9341; Fax: 808-544-9396; E-mail: jfagrusa@aol.com




Information Technology & Tourism, Vol. 8, pp. 197-214
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Copyright © 2006 Cognizant Comm. Corp.
Printed in the USA. All rights reserved.

Identifying Significant Factors Influencing Consumer Trust in an Online Travel Site

Changfeng Chen

Department of Parks, Recreation, and Hospitality Administration, Arkansas Tech University, Russellville, AR, USA

The critical role of trust as an enabler, especially in a relationship in which the consumer does not have direct control over the actions of a seller and in which marketers seek long-term relations with their consumers, has been widely recognized in both academia and industry. Based on previous studies in multiple disciplines, this study develops a model representing the determinants of consumer trust in an online travel site and reports the results of an empirical investigation for this model. Theoretically, the study advances our current understanding of consumer trust in e-commerce by proposing a model and providing evidence for the major elements contributing to the formation of this construct. From a managerial perspective, the study provides practitioners with practical insights on how to design Internet marketing strategies that can initiate, develop, and maintain consumer trust.

Key words: Consumer trust; Online travel; E-Commerce; Travel and tourism

Address correspondence to Changfeng Chen, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Parks, Recreation, and Hospitality Administration, Arkansas Tech University, Williamson Hall, Russellville, AR 72801, USA. Tel: (479) 968-0687; E-mail: Changfeng.Chen@atu.edu




Information Technology & Tourism, Vol. 8, pp. 215-226
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Copyright © 2006 Cognizant Comm. Corp.
Printed in the USA. All rights reserved.

Trust Aware Usability

Punam Bedi and Hema Banati

Department of Computer Science, University of Delhi, Delhi, India

The field of travel and tourism has been significantly affected by the recent trend of increased web usage. The high competition in this field makes it necessary for the organization to attract and retain the users through user-friendly and trustworthy websites. This article explores the relationship between user trust and usability of a website. Intuitionistic fuzzy sets (IFS) are employed to identify the effect of state of a website feature on its trustworthiness. Identification of the trustworthiest state among the four distinct dynamic feature states is exemplified through a case study of three airline websites. Such identification can significantly affect the usability of a website and hence the commercial success of that website.

Key words: Trust; Usability; Website; Intuitionistic fuzzy sets (IFS); Feature state

Address correspondence to Hema Banati, Department of Computer Science, University of Delhi, Delhi-110007, India. Tel: +91-9891217426; E-mail: banatihema@hotmail.com




Information Technology & Tourism, Vol. 8, pp. 227-238
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Copyright © 2006 Cognizant Comm. Corp.
Printed in the USA. All rights reserved.

Not Very Willkommen: The Internet as a Marketing Tool for Attracting German-Speaking Tourists to Non-European Destinations

Wolfgang Georg Arlt

Leisure and Tourism Management, University of Applied Sciences, Stralsund, Germany

The Internet can be a powerful cross-cultural incoming tourism communication tool if used in a proper way. This article looks at the general features of the topic and the results of earlier research of the author in the field, followed by the methodology and the results of a study of German-language websites of non-European national and regional destination marketing organizations (DMOs), conducted in 2005. The study shows that even though Germany was the number one spending nation in international tourism in 2003, many important non-European DMOs do not provide any German language tourism websites at all or only pages with serious deficits, especially in terms of topicality, interactivity, and customized information and design.

Key words: Tourism; Internet; Germany; Marketing; Cross-culture; Diversity management

Address correspondence to Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Georg Arlt, FH Stralsund, Zur Schwedenschanze 15, 18435 Stralsund, Germany. Tel: +49 179 7052451; E-mail: wolfgang.arlt@fh-stralsund.de




Information Technology & Tourism, Vol. 8, pp. 239-254
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Copyright © 2006 Cognizant Comm. Corp.
Printed in the USA. All rights reserved.

A Framework for the Evaluation of Hotel Websites: The Case of Greece

Costas Zafiropoulos and Vasiliki Vrana

Department of Business Administration, Technological Educational Institute of Serres, Greece

It is essential for hotel companies to evaluate and improve website performance in order to keep and increase their online presence and competitiveness in the marketplace. This article proposes an evaluation framework for hotel websites, which categorizes web information services into six information dimensions and also uses managers' and users' views. Based on the relative literature, the model proposes some improvements, taking into account certain aspects of the evaluation procedure. An application compares the performance of the top 25 hotel brand websites with the Greek hotel websites. Top hotels lead in Facilities, Guest contact, Reservation/prices, and Surrounding area information provision, while Greek hotel websites fall back especially in providing online reservation and prices information.

Key words: Information services; Evaluation; Performance; Hotel websites; Information dimensions; Top hotels; Greece

Address correspondence to Dr. Costas Zafiropoulos, Department of Business Administration, Technological Educational Institution of Serres, Terma Magnesias, 62124, Serres, Greece. Tel: +302321049280; Fax: +302321049165; E-mail: kz@teiser.gr




Information Technology & Tourism, Vol. 8, pp. 255-269
1098-3058/06 $60.00 + .00
Copyright © 2006 Cognizant Comm. Corp.
Printed in the USA. All rights reserved.

Automatic Website Evaluations: The Case of Hotels in Hong Kong

Steven Chan1 and Rob Law2

1Department of Computing and 2School of Hotel & Tourism Management, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hung Hom, Kowloon, Hong Kong

Websites are now the basic requirement to an increasing number of communication and business strategies. The usability of a website, effectiveness of its interface, as well as its amount of information, ease of navigation, and user friendliness of its functions, are central to the success of these strategies. Yet these important design qualities remain to date undefined and difficult to evaluate in a convenient and objective way. In this article, we describe the development of the Automatic Website Evaluation System (AWES), an automated website evaluation tool. AWES is applied to 61 Hong Kong hotel websites. HTML tags representing categories of the information pertinent to effective website design are automatically collected and classified. The results can provide objective and quantitative guidance to website design.

Key words: Web page design; Hong Kong; Language interpreter; Evaluations

Address correspondence to Steven Chan, Department of Computing, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hung Hom, Kowloon, Hong Kong. Tel: (852) 2766 7254; Fax: (852) 2774 0852; E-mail: csstchan@comp.polyu.edu.hk