28 August 2012
M.B.A. / In recent years South African travel industry has been facing ferocious competition. The competitive business environment has driven managers to consider the performance of their organizations in order to increase market share, or in other words, improve the quality of service as the ultimate weapon for achieving high performance. The delivery of service quality to customers requires a congruence in the perceptions of the customers and the providers of service. The aim of this research is to examine if there are any statistically significant differences in the perceptions of received service between the three major groups i.e. the customers, the staff and the managers of travel agencies. The information was gathered by means of a mail survey. A questionnaire was developed (based on SERVQUAL), where all possible answers of respondents were pre-specified and standardized, in order to ease the comparison of responses. The findings of the research revealed significant differences between the perceptions of customers and staff and that of managers and staff of the travel agencies but not between managers and customers. Of most concern, were the differences in the perceptions of the dimension of reliability, which was considered the most important dimension by the customers. Therefore, the managers of travel agencies in South Africa need to devise strategies and seriously consider the issue of internal marketing to achieve this alignment in the perceptions
17 April 2015
M.A. (Tourism and Hospitality Management) / Travel agents have been traditionally seen as the key intermediary between suppliers of travel services and the traveller. Developments in the field of information technology offer consumers an alternative to booking via a travel agent - the option to plan and arrange holidays online. Due to the ever developing nature of technology, travellers have the luxury of a multitude of choices in their everyday life - particularly so in making decisions regarding travel. Travellers will seek to optimise choices by selecting a distribution channel which will provide them with the greatest perceived value. The primary goal of the study is to explore the underlying factors that influence consumer behaviour in making travel decisions, with specific reference to choosing between booking through a travel agent or online. Research with a perspective on travel decision-making in South Africa is limited. In attempting to fill the void, this study surveyed 408 respondents residing in South Africa using a structured questionnaire, and examined preference in booking holiday flights or accommodation travel through a travel agent or Internet. A literature review was embarked upon to create a framework for this study and to recognise previous research related to travel decision-making. Exploratory factor analysis was used to identify factors influencing traveller decision-making. Statistical tests, such as Chi-square and correlation tests, were further used to examine the degree of relationship and significance between items and factors. Factors that influence travel decision-making were identified, namely trust and financial risk perception, convenience and adoption of technology, price, personal contact or empathy and the role of demographic factors such as age, income and ethnicity...
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