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The Importance of Weather and Climate Feature in The Decision-making Process of Customers in The Tourism and Hospitality Industry

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A customer’s decision-making process is critical to the success of an enterprise, especially those which deal with tourism and hospitality. There are various factors that affect the choice of tourists’ destination during summer and winter. Imperatively, destinations have a complex nature. They are defined as geographical areas that have an amalgam/variety of facilities, services, and tourism products, which motivate tourists to visit a particular area since they are assured that the expected integrated experience will satisfy their demands (Beedie, 2013, p. 467). Most specifically, weather and climate feature as critical factors when it comes to a customer’s decision-making process, including determining the outcome of tourism operations in the course of conducting business. It is defined as the average prevailing long-term condition that is observed in the location in question (Adair, 2013, p. 45). In contrast, weather is the manifestation of climate during a specific time and place (Kozak, Andrea, Gnoth, Lebe, and Fyall, 2013, p. 12). As such, while tourists might expect to experience a certain climate when they visit a place, they will actually be welcomed with the weather of that place, which might reflect significant deviations from the average conditions (Clarity, 2014, p. 34). In contrast, the long-term basis may reveal a set of systematic changes that are projected under different scenarios of climate change (Minnazi, 2014, p. 104). For instance, sea and surface temperatures are always deemed to increase and rain patterns are always expected to change, with some regions receiving more rainfall than others, and it is inevitable for extreme events to take place (Clarity, 2014, p. 36). Based on this, tourist destinations are expected to benefit greatly if they possess the knowledge and understanding of climatic changes and how they influence their operations in terms of tourist visits.

The other parts of this report are committed to an explanation of how weather/climate affects tourist visits. The existing literature offers a glimpse into global phenomena, such as the choice of destination, and specific studies concerning recreation-weather interactions, such as how warm winters affect summer in regions such as Canada with regards to the notable golfing season. Both aspects are regarded as important in the international tourism market, though the findings can be personalized and adopted for specific situations, such as the condition individual countries. There will also be a discussion of demand in the tourism sector. Other areas include an analysis of how weather and climate affect the flow of international tourists, including how their choice is altered by these two. It is also imperative to consider safety and satisfaction issues, followed by an exploration of how changes in climate directly interfere with the conditions that are in the target environments of tourists. Additionally, it is crucial to look deeper into sea level, warmer temperatures, how alpine environments change with time, and sundry.

Rationale

Despite the high level of focus placed on economic variables while looking into the factors that affect the flow of tourists, climate and weather feature as the latest discoveries when it comes to the key drivers for growth in the sector. In fact, climate is the main resource for tourism or it is a very indispensable facilitator that leads to more fun and derivation of satisfaction from the venture. what is more, the benefits of climate and weather are commanding growth in the sector and tourist flows are well captured in the various advertisement channels that strive to paint the desired image for tourist destinations (Minazzi, 2014, p. 45). Whereas regions, such as Barbadoes capitalizes on its highly desirable weather to make good money, others concert their limitations into strengths, such as Tarifa, which has learned to benefit from the intense and frequent wind in the region to establish a windsurfing tourism center (Egger and Maurer, 2014, p. 304). The region was formerly unfavorable for windsurfing. As such, there is bound to be a statistically significant relationship between weather and climatic conditions and the decision making process of customers. The research will use a case study of British tourists to investigate the nature of choice construction as determined by weather patterns. As such, the destination that is preferred by a certain customer is determined by the weather/climatic condition in the area (Zhang, 2017). It means that when the weather in a particular place is not conducive for a particular tourism type, then tourists are bound to postpone their visit, cut it short, or deviate to another region altogether (European Conference on Intellectual Capital, Bagnoli, Mio, Garlatti, and Massaro, 2016). Based on this, there is a need to conduct a scientific inquiry into how weather and climate affect the tastes and preferences of tourism consumers and the measures that entities should adopt while maneuvering through the situation.

Research Objectives

  • The underlying goal of this analysis is to explore how the decision patterns of tourists are affected by changing weather and climatic conditions in the regions that they desire to visit. As such, the first objective is to illustrate how tourism is affected by weather events.
  • There is also the need to conduct an explorative journey into the various types of tourism, and how tourist decisions in each are affected by weather and climatic conditions. In this regard, beach tourism is seen to encounter significant gains from climate change with respect to aggregate conditions. Second, skiing tourism is bound to suffer because the snow that covers most places during winter will sharply deteriorate when the season ends. In such an event, there are a lot of tourists who will drop the activity.
  • Another important objective of this research is to explore some possible models that can be used to make predictive input concerning the independent and dependent variables. One particular expert came up with a climatic model that can be used to predict the occurrence of higher temperatures in all seasons, aside from summer. When there are extreme conditions, some beaches around the world are bound to experience extended spring and summer, such as some regions in Europe. For instance, there is the Topdad’s model that is used to all the possible areas that will lose their snow level when the winter season comes to an end. It also shows all the areas that will remain reliable, such as the Scandinavia and Alps, which will experience less overnight stays by tourists compared to the southern parts. As such, it skiing business people invest in this kind of model, then they could significantly control the issue of losses in overnight stays.
  • It is also critical to assess some of the adaptation measures that tourists consider while dealing with the issue of unexpected weather or climatic conditions. As identified in the introduction segment, weather outcomes may not necessarily mean that they reflect the average climate of the area. During such instances, tourists are always faced with the unexpected, and this calls for countermeasures to move with the changing situation.

Literature Review

This section provides a review of some closely related topic to the variables under this analysis, including the importance of weather and climate on tourism demand, business tourism and factors that affect travel decisions, how climatic outcomes affect the choice of travel destinations, and others. The overall goal is to carry out a comparative analysis of some variables with the aim of deriving important insight that can be used to enhance an understanding of the relationship between these two variables.

Business Tourism

Researchers define business tourism as a cross section of businesses, industries, and stakeholders to meet the routine requirements and needs of tourists who travel for business purposes (International Conference on Information and Communication Technologies in Tourism, Tussyadiah, and Inversini, 2015, p.112). It refers to every trip that is realized by a business tour or related to a traveler’s employment. Usually, people make business trips for the purposes of participating in formal meetings, such as conferences, trade fairs, exhibitions, corporate hospitality, and other incentives aimed at triggering travels. According to Dessler (2011), there are many terms that are used synonymously, such as mice (meetings, incentives, convention, and exhibitions) (p.331). It is also important to consider that there is some significant level of ambiguity while using the term “meeting.” it is because it could be used to describe a specific business event, but at times it is applied in the representation of an entire business tourism sector (Hostfede, 2014, p. 46).

There has been significant growth is business tourism both in the international and domestic markets. Statistics indicate that the sector has experienced an average of 25% growth in the majority of market segments. Even though this type of tourism (both work and business purposes) recorded an average of 4.8% of all tourism visits, it is regarded as a lucrative growth area with regards to future tourism (Destefano, 2016, p. 401).

Weather Conditions and Tourist Behavior

Drennan (2013) categorically states that the relationship between human behavior and weather is a fascinating topic with regards to research areas and application (p.13). For instance, individual financial or social behavior seems to be a subset of variables of weather. What is more, the connection between weather and tourist behavior was formerly explored in the various literature on marketing. According to studies emanating from various areas of research, a link exists between weather and the behavior of consumers. In contrast, various explanatory variables exist for the underlying mechanism (Edwards and Rees, 2014, 2010, p. 102). In addition to thermoregulation, such explanations include some unique adaptive processes, which function as a form of psychological homeostasis (Drennan, 2013, p. 50).

Consumers always make use of their holiday trips to search for alternative conditions of weather and climate. It means that vacation trips are considered as a short-term means of regulating moods since tourists are always in search of optimal conditions that support physical and psychological comfort (Edwards and Rees, 2014, p. 112). Edward and Rees (2014) searched for some empirical evidence that measured the behavior of German tourists and their idea of what a perfect weather condition would be with regards to the summer holidays (p. 110). Even the tourists, who made visits to various destinations for many reasons aside from weather or defied poor weather, did not reflect significant differences in their opinion of what “good weather” means (Varley, Taylor, and Johnson, 2013, p. 78).

Research Methodology

This research used the mixed method to collect and analyze both numerical and abstract data. The method was chosen because of the complex nature of the research problem that required the combination of two types of data to arrive at the most rational findings, conclusion, and recommendations. Consequently, while qualitative analysis focused abstract data, including experiences, expectations, feelings, perceptions, attitudes, and opinions of the British tourists, quantitative analysis was interested in gathering and analyzing numerical data that were acquired from secondary sources.

The dependent variable was the behavior of tourists or the nature of choice patterns of tourists while the independent variable was weather and climate changes. As such, the whole idea was to measure how the dependent variable changes as a result of the changes taking place in the independent variable (Economic and Social Research Council, 2015, p. 553). The discussion of this relationship is presented in the findings section.

The research opted for the simple random sampling to select the sample. This method of sampling is whereby each participant has an equal chance of being selected to take part in the study. Consequently, the method is simple and cheap to use, and the fact that every member of the population has the same probability of featuring in the study, it means that there is sufficient representation of the research problem.

The explanatory design was chosen for the study. This includes the approach of finding data that explains how small distortions in the independent variable inform bigger changes in the dependent variable (Bhattacharya, 2016, p. 45). It seeks to explain the nature of the relationships and how they are connected to the research problem. The main idea is to make deductions that seem to solve the research problem in the long-run. Interviews and questionnaires were used to collect primary data from the participants while secondary data was gathered from internet sources, journal materials, and records from various agencies that are concerned with the regulation of the sector.

Findings and Discussion

This section is committed to a discussion of the findings from the quantitative and qualitative analysis, including deducing trends and recommendations that could be used to enhance performance. The findings include the outcome of primary and secondary data gathering process, including abstract and numerical data. there was a lot of emphasis on the primary data acquired from the respondents who were sourced from Britain, and the idea was to evaluate their feelings, perceptions, attitudes, opinions, expectations, desires, in the whole idea of assessing their consumer behavior pattern as far as tourism destination is concerned (Finsterwalder, 2015, p. 312).

Weather is a major element with regards to human behavior at different levels and in various ways. They range from the kind of apparel to put on as determined by one’s expectation for rainfall to extreme events, such as thunderstorms and hurricanes. In the same fashion, climate factors trigger behavior and related behavior regulators, such that climate is defined as the average weather patterns in the long-term (Finsterwalder, 2015, p. 401). It means that climate and weather exerts a specified kind of pressure on tourism behaviors, resulting in a general influence on the industry’s performance. This is because it determines the number of potential and current tourists who visit a particular place (Reekers, 2015, p. 125). The effect becomes greater when reinforced with the notion of climate change (World Bank, 2014). From the perspective of demand, climate and weather exert an influence level on the motivations that spur individuals to travel (O’Leary, 2015, p. 332). Other similar factors include the timing of travel, planned or actual behavior of tourists while at the destination of their choice, value-for-money perceptions, holiday satisfaction, and the intentions of a consumer to make a return visit (Maslow, 2014, p. 543). With regards to the importance of climate and weather in commanding demand, there has been growth in the body of literature that explores perceptions, preferences, expectations, and the experiences of tourist while at their destinations of choice (Jager and Raich, 2014, p. 34). It explains why some industries have made efforts to adopt a model called the climate index model which plays the role of estimating the future flows of tourist (French, 2015, p. 702). It also measures patterns of seasonality on a macro-scale basis with respect to different conditions of weather (Browitt and Millner, 2013, p. 89). Other studies have placed their focus on environments that are specific to the context, for instance, the mountainous and urban areas, coastal, and some important natural features that include weather and climate for tourist experiences and decision-making (Oleson, 2014, p. 667).

In contrast, information lacks pertaining to how tourists perceive weather and climatic changes, including situ and subsequent behavior while planning for their trips (Maslow, 2013, p. 568). Increases in the variability of climate, seasonal weather changes, and extreme events of weather affect the supply and demand systems of tourist visits (Kwiatkowski, 2013, p. 110). They also estimated to affect the systems according to future analysis, alongside the processes that climate changes assume (Roberts, 2014, p. 67). The aforementioned changes call for a deeper understanding of the connection between weather experiences and expectations and tourism (Xiang and Tussyadiah, 2013, p. 334). These also include the variables that play a major role with regards to the perceptions about holiday satisfaction and comfort. In addition, there is the need for the examination of the different climatic conditions and how they affect levels of perception and satisfaction (International Conference on Social Computing, Behavioral Modeling, and Prediction, Agarwal and Osgood, 2015, p. 34). There are small tropical destinations and islands that have warmer climates, which constitute interesting settings that are worth study (Tyler and Donovan, 2016, p. 501). Based on this, small islands are perceived to have received a negligible level of attention as far as this area of research is concerned, though tourism is viewed as a vital source of income in such regions (International Conference on Human-Computer Interaction, and Stephanidis, 2015, p. 45).

Mountain Destinations

This section presents a discussion of the reaction of the respondents concerning their experiences in mountain destinations. Consequently, winter sports destinations are gradually considering how climate change impacts their enterprises. The research had the opportunity to interview a ski resort based in Switzerland (Goergen, Brewster and Wood, 2013, p. 411). This choice is based on the fact that there are very many British tourist visits to the area; thus, the need to evaluate how the behaviors of tourists inform the productivity of resort businesses in case of climate changes (Park, Yi, Jeong, and Shen, 2016, p. 56). Presently, a ski resort in Switzerland is classified as “snow reliable,” if eight out of ten winters show a snow level that is 30cm for more than 100 days between 1st November and 16 April (Hofstede, 2013, p. 671). A recent study confirms that close to 85% of all the ski resorts in the country are regarded as snow-reliable, with the line of reliability topping 1600 m, as is expected to occur by 2025 to 2040 and the numbers of resorts that are snow reliable are likely to decrease (Hofstede, 2013, p. 567). Climate also has the potential of affecting the scenery appearance of landscapes. There has been ongoing research on the quality changes that mountainous environments undergo (Schramm, 2014, p. 608). One typical occurrence is glaciations that take place because of changes in climatic conditions. Changing Ecozones and disappearing glaciers are some of the potential negative effects of climatic changes (Hofstede, 2014, p. 784). A recent study that was carried out on the impact of changing environmental conditions with respect to high warming situations for 2070 in the rocky mountain national park of Canada led to a critical revelation (Inversini and Schegg, 2016, p. 390). Accordingly, the changing ecosystems will hamper recreationist visits, for instance, a decreasing abundance of the salmon fish (Inversini & Schegg, 2016, p. 678). Another similar study that focused on changing temperatures discovered that the number of visitors would increase (Katsoni, Upadhya, and Stratigea, 2017, p. 556). These studies combined compel an audience to consider the direct and indirect changes that take place when they seek to make a good use of the patterns (Hofstede, 2014, p. 701).

Destination Management and Climate Change

The previous discussion on weather impacts on tourism highlights the fact that the destinations of tourists are exposed to climate seasonality and variability. This means that even under the conditions of present-day viability and profitability, destination is partly influenced by climate. As such, the exposure to events brought about by climatic change will be exacerbated by changes in climate, though opportunities exist as a result of potentially more favorable conditions that may arise in the future (Zang, 2017, p. 800). Consequently, it is not a surprise that there has been increasing attention on how tourist destinations are affected by climatic changes, including how they can adopt themselves in the process of risk reduction and capitalizes on the present opportunities (Kira´l?ova´, 2017, p. 600).

The impact range and subsequent implications for tourists were summarized in a report prepared by UNWTO, WMO, and, UNEP, as presented in the table below. As such, climate change has the potential of impacting tourism in three major ways, namely, due to gradual temperature changes or the fluctuations in sea level, secondly, as a result of extreme events that are brought about by high winds, and lastly, because of wider changes in the environment that affect the resource base of tourism, such as the changing ecosystems or the limited availability of water (Kira´l?ova´, 2017, p. 145).

Conclusions and Recommendations

The interest of this study included an examination of the weather preferences, behavior, and expectations of tourists and holidaymakers in Britain and around the world respectively. Preliminary results have been discussed in the previous section and some of the areas that require further investigation include the preference of holiday makers in a specific summer holiday, how weather impacts the choice of destination for tourists, the actual perceptions of weather, the activities that are associated with some weather outcomes, and finally, an exploration into some of the evaluative processes and models used by holiday makers. As such resort owners and holiday makers are encouraged to adopt the findings of this study to make informed predictions about the flow of tourist visits to their destinations. The study also recommends them to come up with possible models that could be used to measure weather patterns against some expected tourist behaviors to avoid business losses that emanate from bad weather.

Limitations

This study is limited since there is no analysis of the socio-psychological factors that arise in the decision making processes of tourists, such as perceptions, attitudes, experiences, motivations, and sundry. Instead, it specializes in creating the notion of the fact that climate and weather changes play a critical role in determining the destination choice of tourists. In other words, the study focuses on investigating the relationship between climate and weather changes and supply and demand systems in the tourism sector. The underlying assumption that pushed this research towards goal attainment was that weather plays a critical role in shaping the decision outcomes of holidaymakers, mostly those based in the tropical islands. In this regard, the deviations from the expectations and preferences of tourists will breed negative perceptions for those who are traveling. This also includes perceptions about value-for-money of the target destination. It means that a negative experience-expectation gap is likely to impinge on the intentions of consumers to make revisits to their destinations.

Finally, the random method of sampling selected is not accurate and the size of sample seems to undermine the accuracy of this research (Vigolo, 2014, p. 901). Random sampling is very conducive when dealing with small populations but when it comes to big populations, accuracy issues are likely to arise. It is not possible to give every member of a given population an equal chance of featuring in the survey. It is because such an exercise requires the possession of an accurate and complete list of the members of the population.

Reflection on Learning from the Project

This project is highly educational and insightful because it sheds some light into an important element that influences the behavioral decisions of British tourists. The study has addressed the complex relationship between climatic changes and tourism sector through conducting research on the two. As such, there is an urgent and wide recognition for national governments, the tourism industry, and international bodies to collaboratively come up with strategies and models that can help in dealing with the changing conditions. The adoption of preventive measures to deal with future outcomes is also critical for the overall success of the sector.

The study will also help the relevant authorities to develop approaches for dealing with negative environmental impacts that lead to unexpected climatic distortions and weather changes. What is more, they should be concerned with the needs of third world countries in the course of alleviating poverty and pursuit of the millennium development goals.

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The Importance of Weather and Climate Feature in the Decision-making Process of Customers in the Tourism and Hospitality Industry. (2018, October 26). GradesFixer. Retrieved October 4, 2022, from https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/the-importance-of-weather-and-climate-feature-in-the-decision-making-process-of-customers-in-the-tourism-and-hospitality-industry/
“The Importance of Weather and Climate Feature in the Decision-making Process of Customers in the Tourism and Hospitality Industry.” GradesFixer, 26 Oct. 2018, gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/the-importance-of-weather-and-climate-feature-in-the-decision-making-process-of-customers-in-the-tourism-and-hospitality-industry/
The Importance of Weather and Climate Feature in the Decision-making Process of Customers in the Tourism and Hospitality Industry. [online]. Available at: <https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/the-importance-of-weather-and-climate-feature-in-the-decision-making-process-of-customers-in-the-tourism-and-hospitality-industry/> [Accessed 4 Oct. 2022].
The Importance of Weather and Climate Feature in the Decision-making Process of Customers in the Tourism and Hospitality Industry [Internet]. GradesFixer. 2018 Oct 26 [cited 2022 Oct 4]. Available from: https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/the-importance-of-weather-and-climate-feature-in-the-decision-making-process-of-customers-in-the-tourism-and-hospitality-industry/
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