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Smart tourism: antecedents to Indian traveller's decision

Manisha Paliwal (Balaji Institute of International Business (BIIB), Sri Balaji University, Pune, India)
Nishita Chatradhi (Independent Researcher, Toronto, Canada)
Archana Singh (Vishwakarma University, Pune, India)
Ramkrishna Dikkatwar (Pune Institute of Business Management, Pune, India)

European Journal of Innovation Management

ISSN: 1460-1060

Article publication date: 28 December 2022

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the tourists' perception of smart tourism with the application of virtual reality and design a framework of smart tourism with elements of VR for Indian Tourism especially in the periods of the pandemic COVID-19. The ever-evolving and unprecedented COVID 19 situation had posed extreme challenges for the travel and tourism industry. In such conditions, it is becoming increasingly necessary to rely on digital technologies, ICT and smart tourism. ICT has served as a catalyst for innovations in tourism.

Design/methodology/approach

This study investigates the impact of smart tourism and virtual reality technology on the perception of tourists towards travelling decisions during and post COVID-19 scenario. The respondents involved in the study were tourists travelling in India, the tourists come from different parts of India. A structured questionnaire has been administered to collect data from 224 travellers across India. The questionnaire consisted 22 constructs. The constructs in this section were measured using a five-point Likert scale ranging. In the first step, the first order Confirmatory Factor Analysis (CFA) is carried out, by using the software IBM AMOS-20. The initial model is generated ix constructs, and outcomes are used to analyse the model's goodness of fit and construct validity. In the second step, Structural Equation Modelling (SEM) is carried out to do the path analysis of the proposed model. The effect of relationships amongst the theoretical constructs is also analysed using SEM.

Findings

The findings imply that the application of smart tourism along with virtual reality forms a positive perception of tourists and provides a sustainable platform for tourism organizations in Indian tourism. Virtual reality-based tourism has emerged as alternate for the tourism industry during the times of Covid, which in long run can be seen as a substitute to traditional tourism. The increasing use of blue ocean concepts, to delivery high-value experience at low cost has complimented the tourism industry. The researchers have made a modest attempt by proposing a blended model of smart tourism with virtual reality as a blue ocean strategy and which would ultimately facilitate the sustainability of the Industry by creating multi-dimensional values of experience for tourists in India.

Research limitations/implications

The researchers have made a modest attempt by proposing a blended model of smart tourism with virtual reality as a blue ocean strategy, which would ultimately facilitate the industry's sustainability by creating multi-dimensional values of experience for tourists in India.

Originality/value

This qualitative study designs a smart tourism system with the use of the recent advances in ICT and Virtual Reality (VR), as a bridging solution and the saviour of the tourism sector in India during COVID 19. The integration of ICT into the travel experience has resulted in the social phenomena of smart tourism. This has led to a rise in use of smart tourism tools among tourism service providers.

Keywords

Citation

Paliwal, M., Chatradhi, N., Singh, A. and Dikkatwar, R. (2022), "Smart tourism: antecedents to Indian traveller's decision", European Journal of Innovation Management, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print. https://doi.org/10.1108/EJIM-06-2022-0293

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2022, Emerald Publishing Limited

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