Volunteer tourism and its (mis)perceptions: A comparative analysis of tourist/host perceptions

Wright, H. (2014) Volunteer tourism and its (mis)perceptions: A comparative analysis of tourist/host perceptions. Tourism and Hospitality Research, 13 (4). pp. 239-250. ISSN 1467-3584

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1177/1467358414527984

Abstract

It is imperative to ensure that the volunteer tourism sector is perceived in an accurate light to ensure that the tourists are signing up for what they are actually going to get, and to ensure that the hosts are aware of the industry that they may be entering. In order to ensure a profit maximising, long lasting and sustainable industry that delivers the intended benefits, it is important that the industry is portrayed accurately. At present this does not appear to be the case. This paper examines the perceptions of the volunteer tourism sector from both a Western tourists’ perspective and a hosts’ perspective and identifies three key research themes demonstrating substantial differences and the possibility of misperceptions of the industry: educational benefit, tourists living and working in the host community and the possible contribution to community development. Discussion of the limitations of definitional boundaries and associated sectors provides justification for the potential misperceptions of the industry. Through the use of 26 in-depth interviews, the study reveals a number of key concepts and highlights areas that warrant further research.

Item Type: Article
Members: Bucks New University
Depositing User: RED Unit Admin
Date Deposited: 08 May 2017 14:53
Last Modified: 08 May 2017 14:53
URI: http://collections.crest.ac.uk/id/eprint/15656

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