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Title: Evaluation of the tourist experience using a framework for the analysis of the influence of social media on tourist behaviour

Authors: Célia M.Q. Ramos; Azizul Hassan

Addresses: School for Management, Hospitality and Tourism (ESGHT) and Research Centre for Tourism, Sustainability, and Well-Being (CinTurs), Universidade do Algarve, Campus da Penha, 8005-139, Faro, Portugal ' Tourism Consultants Network, The Tourism Society, UK 3, Port House, Square Rigger Row, London, SW11 3TY, UK

Abstract: Social media are one of the most powerful tools in supporting the strategic management of tourist destinations, because visitors now share their trip experiences and provide testimonies on these platforms. Such information is a source of support to all potential tourists who intend to travel to the same destinations, and thus it influences their behaviour. The present study assesses the impact that social media-which are increasingly assuming the role of travel agencies-have on tourists' behaviour. It uses a conceptual framework to consider whether tourists' perceived and actual behaviour are interrelated and whether the latter reflects the former. Finally, using London as a case study, it suggests that tourists' behaviour is based more on prior knowledge of a destination, and that social media play a role in providing that knowledge.

Keywords: social media; tourist experience; sharing experience; consumer behaviour; the unified theory of acceptance and use of technology; London; tourism; ICT; information and communication technology; TAM; technology acceptance model; destination marketing organisation.

DOI: 10.1504/IJTP.2021.118663

International Journal of Tourism Policy, 2021 Vol.11 No.3, pp.207 - 221

Received: 14 Oct 2020
Accepted: 02 Apr 2021

Published online: 28 Oct 2021 *

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