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Santa Maria da Feira, Portugal

Salazar A.,Fernando Pessoa University | Salazar A.,IPDT Institute Turismo | Costa J.,Fernando Pessoa University | Costa J.,IPDT Institute Turismo | Rita P.,IBS ISCTE IUL Business School
Worldwide Hospitality and Tourism Themes | Year: 2010

Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to present a scale for service quality evaluation in the hospitality sector. This scale has two aims: to assess the dimensions and attributes consumers use when evaluating the quality of the service provided by hotels, and to determine what influence service quality perceptions have on consumer behaviour, namely on customer intentions to return and to recommend the hotel. Design/methodology/approach: The methodology used to develop the scale was divided into three stages: first, two well-known models (SERVQUAL with direct formulation and SERPERF) were tested in 32 hotels, through 532 questionnaires. As these models were not conclusive, a second phase took place: 109 in-depth interviews were conducted to assess the relevant factors or attributes for consumers during a hotel stay, both for the holiday and business segments. Based on the results of the interviews, a questionnaire was designed to evaluate service quality provided by four and five star hotels. On this third phase, a sample of 257 respondents/hotel customers was achieved. Findings: The main results point to the existence of five dimensions: room (tangibles and service); feelings; restaurant service; tangibles (location, exterior and restaurant) and reception, explaining 56, 1 per cent of the consumers' service quality evaluation. Another finding points out the existence of a stronger relationship between service quality perceptions and the intention to recommend the hotel (74, 8 per cent) than the intention to return to the hotel (55, 9 per cent). Originality/value: Based on the knowledge of the relative importance of the attributes consumers use when evaluating the service provided by four and five stars hotels, the relevant influence emotions have on consumers' service quality evaluation and the influence service quality perceptions have on behavioural intentions, several recommendations to managers are made, both in terms of managing the hotel, as well as tourist destinations. © Emerald Group Publishing Limited. Source


Costa J.,Fernando Pessoa University | Costa J.,IPDT Institute Turismo | Salazar A.,Fernando Pessoa University | Salazar A.,IPDT Institute Turismo | And 3 more authors.
Worldwide Hospitality and Tourism Themes | Year: 2010

Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to review the question: What have we learned about how tourist destinations may become more competitive and the tools to achieve this aim? Design/methodology/approach: The paper considers the contribution made by each theme issue article to an overall understanding of tourism destinations' competitiveness and how this can be achieved and improved by using a series of strategic and operational tools. Findings: The paper presents examples of key tools for improving destinations' competitiveness, how they were applied in industry contexts and recommendations for future use. Practical implications: The paper summarizes the strategies and actions undertaken by organizations and destinations to improve competitiveness and comments on the practical implications. Originality/value: The paper takes further the ideas put forward in the editorial and provides a concise analysis of how companies and destinations may improve their competitiveness by taken a sustainable and holistic approach to tourism development. © Emerald Group Publishing Limited. Source

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