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AbstractThis thesis focuses on an under-researched area of tourism - individualised travel - by examining non-institutionalised solitary travellers. The purpose of the study is to discover precisely why non-institutionalised solitary travellers travel alone. In order to understand the travel behaviour and motivation of solitary travellers, they are contrasted with group tourists. To be able to tackle this research problem, Grounded Theory is chosen as the most appropriate approach, for the following reasons. First, Grounded Theory is a methodology which makes its greatest contribution in areas about which little is known. Second, its aim is to generate rather than to test theory. Based on the computer-assisted content analysis and interpretation of relatively neglected qualitative data obtained from interviews and diaries, sixteen socio-psychological justifications for solo travel are empirically identified. From these responses, a taxonomy of non-institutionalised solitary travellers is inductively constructed. It consists of two basic types. First, there are those who travel alone because they simply have no available travel companion, referred to as "solitary travellers by default". Second, there are those individuals who deliberately travel on their own, and who are regarded as "solitary travellers by choice". The elaboration of such a distinction is the primary contribution made by this research to tourism knowledge. A secondary contribution is realised by confronting the data on solitary travellers and group tourists with the extant literature on tourist typologies - an exercise that raises a number of issues about the mythical status of the former. As a result, an alternative taxonomy is generated that consists of two distinct types of tourists - individualistic and collectivistic. The individualistic tourist is someone for whom internal personal values. (e.g., sense of accomplishment) are the most important principles in life, who has motives stemming from ego-enhancement (e.g., personal development), and for whom travel means the investment of personal cultural capital. The collectivistic tourist, on the other hand, is someone who assigns greater priority to external personal values (e.g., sense of belonging), whose motives originate in the anomic conditions of society, and for whom travel is little more than a short break from routine.
CitationMehmetoglu, M. (2003) 'The solitary traveller: why do people travel on their own?'. PhD thesis. University of Luton.
PublisherUniversity of Bedfordshire
TypeThesis or dissertation
DescriptionA thesis submitted for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy of the University of Luton.
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A longitudinal examination of the impact of ‘travel advisors’ on psycho-social predictors and physical activityMiah, Jolel (University of BedfordshireUniversity of Bedfordshire, 2021-07)Introduction: 'Personal Travel Planning' (PTP) interventions are used to motivate people to change behaviour through active travel. This research aimed to investigate whether the influence of 'Travel Advisors' (TA) used in PTP interventions can motivate residents to engage in higher levels of physical activity (PA) and improve health status. Further, this research aimed to explore how behaviour change theory through the application of ‘Theory of Planned Behaviour’ (TPB) and ‘Health Belief Model’ (HBM) can be used to explain physical activity, intention and behaviour. Method: The survey targeted residents who lived in the 'PTP' target area and measured those who talked to a ‘TA’, and compared the differences to those who did not. As well as PA, health status was recorded to see if further improvements would be made for those who had spoken to a ‘TA’. Participants contained initially 831 adults, and this reduced to 242 adults by the end of twelve months. The average age was fairly consistent of 30 – 31years across each wave of the survey. Similarly, the gender split was consistent across surveys being approximately 30% male and 70% female. To measure PA, the short form International Physical Activity Questionnaire (IPAQ) was used. The short-form health questionnaire (SF36) was used to report physical and mental health to measure health status. The ‘TPB’ questionnaire was selected to measure psychosocial predictors as it had been used in previous 'PTP’ research. The ‘HBM’ was used to measure public benefit in relation to health. Both questionnaires amended items to support the nature of the study. Participants were measured at three time points; Baseline, Six and Twelve months. Only those who completed all three-time points were considered to be reported in this thesis. Results: IPAQ reported that those who had spoken to a ‘TA’ recorded more PA (1852.18 metabolic minutes) than those who didn’t (649.08 metabolic minutes) after twelve months. Furthermore, the SF36 reported that those who spoke to a ‘TA’ reported better physical health (M= 95.98, S.D = 4.50) than those who did not (M=93.08, S.D = 7.01). This was also true for Mental Health (M=62.08, S.D = 8.75) compared to those who did not (M=57.98, S.D. = 8.05) after twelve months. ANOVA’s revealed that there were big significant Interaction effects for components; ‘Attitude’, ‘Intention’, ‘Perceived Behavioural Control’, ‘Subjective Norms’, ‘Benefits’, ‘Susceptibility’ and, ‘Severity’. There were smaller interaction effects for components; ‘Barriers’ and ‘Health Motivation’. The ‘TPB’ variance predicted in intention ranged from 76% to 95% in cross-sectional analyses and was 33% in the longitudinal path analyses. The variance predicted in behaviour ranged from 9.6% to 37.6% in cross-sectional analyses and was 32.6% in the longitudinal path analyses. The ‘HBM’ variance predicted in intention ranged from 79.1% to 94.2% in cross-sectional analyses and was 10.1% in the longitudinal path analyses. The variance predicted in behaviour ranged from 15.7% to 37.5% in cross-sectional analyses and was 9.7% in the longitudinal path analyses. Consistent predictors in the cross-sectional path analyses were ‘Self-Efficacy and ‘Intention’. Discussion: Those who had spoken to a ‘TA reported’ more PA and better mental health overall. There was no significant difference on physical health. It appears that a mix of ‘TPB’ and ‘HBM’ predictors play a role in predicting both intention and behaviour. ‘Self-Efficacy’ seems to be the strongest consistent predictor. Within the ‘TPB’, predictors ‘PBC’ and ‘Subjective Norms’ had greater associations with PA, while ‘Barriers’ seems strongest within the ‘HBM’ Future interventions can use the findings from this research to help make them more effective.
Learning and digital inclusion: the ELAMP projectD'Arcy, Kate; University of Bedfordshire (Taylor and Francis, 2012)The Electronic Learning and Mobility Project (ELAMP) was a nationally funded project by the Department for Children, Schools and Families, which ran from 2004 to 2010. The main aim of ELAMP was to improve the education of Traveller children, particularly highly mobile learners. ELAMP focussed upon the use of mobile technology and distance learning to support, enhance and extend young Travellers’ educational and vocational opportunities. This article will reflect upon the learning and technological experiences and opportunities that the ELAMP project provided for Traveller children, young people and their families. In doing so it will critically consider the value of information technology in working with Traveller communities and advancing their educational opportunities. Reviewing ELAMP work will also demonstrate how the use of mobile technology can improve educational outcomes and Traveller families’ digital inclusion. Now that the project has ended, this article will question why we are not using what we learnt from ELAMP to move forward.