Daka Travel Experience: an Examination of Chinese Millennial Travelers
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“Daka Travel” is trending to become a popular travel style in Chinese tourism market in recent years, especially for Chinese millennial travelers. This study is concerned with understanding the characteristics of Daka travel and deeply investigate travelers’ travel experience of Daka travel. To investigate the travel experience, a conceptual model based on experience economy was proposed and empirically tested. The context of the empirical study was conducted among Chinese millennials travelers. The study includes two steps. Firstly, 15 travelers who had Daka travel experience selected randomly via social media platforms were invited to participate in the semi-structured interview, the interviews were performed to identify interesting characteristics of Daka travelers and attributes of Daka travel. Secondly, people who had Daka travel experience was selected randomly online to participate in the survey. A total of 471 valid questionnaires were collected. Factor analysis and mediation analysis were conducted by using Statistical Product and Service Solutions (SPSS) 26.0. According to the findings of this study, there are several distinctive characteristics of Daka travelers could be concluded: 1. Daka travelers get Daka tourism information from social media especially short-video applications; 2. Social envy is one of major motivations of Daka Travel; 3. Daka travelers share travel experience with the main purposes of recording travel memory; 4. Natural scenic spots and Food & Beverage shops are the two most popular Daka destinations. For the travel experience, the research verified that all of the dimensions (includes entertainment, esthetics, education, escapism, personalization, serendipity, localness and communitas) of experience-scape model significantly influenced the perception of travel experience for Daka travelers. Further, travel experience could contribute to creating memorable travel experience which potentially influenced travelers’ sense of well-being and meaningfulness. In addition, the multiple regression analysis revealed interesting results showing that among the eight dimensions of travel experience-scape, each realm had different influence on travelers’ sense of well-being and meaningfulness. For well-being, “Entertainment” was the most influential factor, however, “Localness” did not have significant influence at all. In contrast, for meaningfulness, “Communitas” and “Personalization” played the most important role. “Entertainment”, “Esthetic” and “Escapism” did not have significant influence. The findings of this research contribute both conceptually and practically to Daka travel destination planning and management to create a satisfying and memorable travel experience. They can improve their ability of providing tourism products and services in a more targeted and meaningful way. More detailed findings and implications will be presented in the manuscript.