The purpose of this paper is to develop and test a new measure called the “culture cushion” to account for the inherent positivity surrounding the inter‐cultural tourist experience.
The first study involved the identification of items for the culture cushion construct and included a semi‐structured questionnaire and a panel discussion. The second study assessed unidimensionality and the convergent, discriminant, and nomological validity of the culture cushion dimensions. Respondents were asked to answer questions about a specific international consumption experience and responded to scale items measuring the culture cushion construct.
A two‐dimensional measure of culture cushion was found to predict satisfaction and behavioral intentions. Judgments were more positive when the encounter was novel relative to previous experiences.
Additional studies involving travel locations other than those used in this study should be conducted to investigate alternate effects of the culture cushion.
A major motivation of recreational tourists traveling internationally includes the ability to observe and participate in activities that are culturally unique. Firms that cater to international tourist clientele should focus on operationalizing country‐specific cultural aspects of the experience to enhance overall perceptions.
The international tourist operates within a dual country framework, using his/her own cultural “lens” to notice the uniqueness of the foreign culture while striving to understand and participate in authentic encounters. The culture cushion construct offers a novel measure of the positivity that occurs in culturally unique inter‐cultural experiences.
Hartman, K., Meyer, T. and Scribner, L. (2009), "Culture cushion: inherently positive inter‐cultural tourist experiences", International Journal of Culture, Tourism and Hospitality Research, Vol. 3 No. 3, pp. 259-268. https://doi.org/10.1108/17506180910980555Download as .RIS
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