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  • Published on: 14th September 2019
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5.  Social Media (20 points)

Based on research, outline how social media influences the consumer decision process in hospitality.  From your personal viewpoint as a member of the millennial generation, discuss what social media site you prefer before making travel decisions and why this is your most preferred site.  How do you predict that the influence on social media will change in the next 5 to 10 years?  

Social Media does influence consumers while making decisions. Social Media made a platform for marketers to reach out to the consumers which is one step closer to what baby boomers experienced. Baby boomers mostly buy and experience products on their own or make decisions based on word of mouth. They also hold a very few sources to collect information about product and services. Millennials are one step further; they make purchasing decisions influenced by social media, they are price conscious and word of mouth doesn't travel within the region – they get opinions on a product on a global scale. Internet connects everyone on a global scale, but social media influence people. New trends like farm-to-table, FOMO, shared economy have influenced people all over the world to follow. The Deloitte report states that about 47% of millennials do purchases based on what they see on social media. And about 1 of 3 consumers in U.S buy based on social media influences. About 30% are likely to purchase products influenced by social media on the same day. This makes social media the strongest platform for marketing decisions. Paul Donagher states “Millennials are more engaged, more vocal and more visual. They're not passive readers – they post, pin, view and blog. And, they're willing to experiment and go onto the next innovation in social media.” (Jimmy Rohampton, 2017).

Social Media hold the potential to influences travelers during the initial stages of decision and purchasing decisions. In a generation without social media, people had very few sources to collect information about the products and services. Travel agents and Travel brochures inform about a place or the accommodation services offered. These sources are replaced by social media. In search and decision stages social media re-shape how buyers look for, distinguish, read, trust and trade data. Consumers prefer information from other travelers. They say UGC (User Generated Content) are trust-worthy than data provided by official websites or travel agents. While the advantages of web-based social networking have been generally noticed, some debate encompasses the power of UGC via web-based networking media, testing its reliability and the credibility of substance. Hotel items and administrations settle on the purchasing choice profoundly enthusiastic and difficult to imitate due to their intangible nature. Hotels are not concentrating on highlighting the nature of their brands and items. Rather they concentrate on assisting the consumer during the evaluation stage with online reviews about hotels through customer to customer communication platforms like blogs and review sites like TripAdvisor. These platforms provide positive and negative reviews and comments about the hotel or the services which will help the hotels see a increase or decline in occupancy.  This is grounded in the foremost establishments of consumer behavior, i.e., consumers have the ability to impact each other (Haywood, 1989).

As a millennial I do heavily depend on social media before I stay in a hotel or visit a restaurant. Social media has built a platform for consumer to consumer communication, where we read about positive and negative feedback of a product or services which will help fellow consumers to know what to expect and help to analyze if the product is right for us.  If I'm going to stay in a hotel for my vacation, I type the name of the hotel on Google, search through other social media websites like Facebook, Instagram to read about other people's experience , analyze and decide whether I want to invest into that particular hotel.




This website is a C2C platform that provide hundreds of reviews for hotels, restaurants, airlines and other hospitality services.


This website provides information about the place and how many people have visited this place, their experience. Gives a clear idea of what to do and what not.


This is a C2C platform specially for restaurants. Consumers rate restaurants, review them and also recommend best food to try in that restaurant.


Millennials are all about visuals. This website provides Pictures and videos of a product by the company itself and also by the consumers.


Market Strategies International

How Does Social Media Influence Millennials' Shopping Decisions?

Jimmy Rohampton -

Eleftherios Varkaris, Barbara Neuhofer, (2017) "The influence of social media on the consumers' hotel decision journey", Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Technology, Vol. 8 Issue: 1, pp.101-118, https://

3.   Political Impacts on the Hospitality Industry (20 points)

Please choose one of the following current major political issues and discuss how it has impacted the tourism and hospitality industry.  How can a global hospitality business that could be impacted by events (such as Disney, Marriott, Delta Airlines, etc.) either capitalize on the event, or minimize the damage.

Political issues to choose from:

1. Policy Issues:  such as travel bans, currency manipulation, etc.

2. Terrorism/Travel Warnings:  such as travel warnings to Europe, Cuba or Mexico

3. Voter Referendum:  Brexit

Political change in a country always make an impact on tourism industry. Radical changes in a country's policies makes the tourist to avoid that country due to the fear of safety. In the end of 2016, post-election results the RevPAR of U.S hotels declined. Followed by Travel ban to seven countries – Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen. Travel ban is a bad move, regardless who are affected. However, any individual coming or considering coming to the U.S. might feel insecure. Trump's travel ban is dangerous for travel industry and bad for the hotels that play a key role within the travel supply chain. i.e.: Travelers from countries unlisted on the travel-ban list, will think twice before travelling to the U.S. for vacation or business. For example, Google recalled hundreds of traveling workers in light event of the travel ban which gives a spotlight that trump's travel ban not only affects the U.S travel but the World Travel itself. Travel to the USA from the Middle East and North Africa has fallen 20 % since President Trump signed his travel ban. Bookings at Marriott, the world's largest hotel operator, from those regions alone throughout the month of February fell up to 30%. Before the election there have been issues that tourism to the U.S would be down in 2017 based on the strength of the dollar. alternative potential threats to the travel business were warnings issued by the governments of the United Arab Emirates, the Bahamas, France, U.K, Canada, New Zealand, and European country urging their citizens to take caution while visiting the U.S, citing dangers like mass shootings, police violence, anti-Muslim and anti-LGBT attitudes, and also the Zika virus. Airlines like Companies from sharing economy like Airbnb and Uber opposed the travel ban. Airbnb announced that they'll provide free housing for all the refugees. Uber gave free rides for people who were protesting against travel bans at the airport. Airlines are the major industry to be affected by this travel ban. Airlines like Emirates, British Airways, United Airlines etc. supported their traveler by giving a refund or rescheduling their booking after 90 days. Most of the airlines like delta found their stock prices going lower after the issue of the executive order. Not only the airlines global companies like Disney, Marriott, Hyatt found their stock prices lowering in a fast pace. Marriott came down of about 1.83% on stock prices. These companies are taking their time challenging the government playing their cards on Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR).


Of course President Trump's travel ban is bad for the hotel industry

David Eisen -

Hospitality responds to Trump's travel ban: Travel Weekly

Danny King -

Trump's travel ban is hitting luxury hotels the hardest

Lisa Fickenscher -

Trump's travel ban is causing a large drop in US tourism - The Boston Globe

Mark Lennihan -

2.  Sharing Economy (20 points)

Sharing economy companies in the hospitality industry have been the subject of much controversy.  Choose either Uber or Airbnb and outline what the company does, and one recent controversy with which they have been faced.  In the long term, do you believe your chosen company will continue to be a threat to the traditional hospitality service providers?  Why or why not?  Please give reasoned and researched reasons for your response.

The rise of peer to peer platforms collectively known as the "sharing economy," has empowered individuals to cooperatively influence utilization of underutilized stock through fee based sharing. Companies like Uber, Airbnb, Lyft, Getaround are a few companies people have adapted to use in day to day life. Technology have streamlined the procedure of market passage for suppliers, encouraged accessible postings for consumers, and kept transaction overheads low. The SE exists in three structures:

(a) based on sharing and leasing of items and services

(b) in view of distribution of exchanged used items, i.e.: exchange same thing among individuals with various needs.

(c) in view of collective ways of life of benefit and ability sharing, which are basically sharing of intangible resources, for example, time, information and skills.

Airbnb is a website that offers accommodation rentals for general society. Clients of the site need to enlist and make individual profiles on the site. Each accommodation is connected to one owner. A landowner's close to home profile contains data, for example, suggestions from different clients, ratings from past customers, responsiveness rating and a private messaging portal. Travelers can publish, find and book accommodations from these sources far and wide.

Customers utilize the site or application at for convenience of having other options to staying. You can look for accommodation in areas everywhere throughout the world at a scope of value indicates. The application permits you customize your preferences. For instance picking between a common room and a private room, or a whole home/condo. Customers have a scope of different filters to apply too, including value run, number of rooms, enhancements and offices Accommodation hosts can stipulate house decides so customers are clear regarding adequate utilization of the property. There is additionally an intelligent guide demonstrating the area of the property and different properties recorded in the zone together with costs so you can without much of a stretch snap and analyze choices Customers utilize the host master le, data about the convenience and photographs, and also past client surveys, to settle on their decision. Payment is influenced by means of a credit card to Airbnb who hold the assets until after the client has checked in, with customers given 24 hours to contact Airbnb. When complains arise, Airbnb is likely to give discounts or change accommodation if not satisfied. At the finish of the stay, the client is welcome to compose a review of the host and settlement, and the host is welcome to do the same on the customer. To operate a hotel in New York, you require an allow, which costs money. To get a permit, you have to guarantee that you're building and rooms are up to code, which additionally costs money. Also, every time a visitor checks in, you pay taxes. But if you lease a New York flat through Airbnb, it costs you nothing.

Airbnb is so famous in New York that hotel owners have taken a shot and conveyed their case to state lawyer general Eric Schneiderman. As per a 2010 New York law, it's illegal to lease your loft for under 30 days if you are not present in the condo. Numerous Airbnb has in New York lease their flats when they themselves take some time off, making those impermanent exchanges illicit. In San Francisco and Portland, Airbnb has experienced harsh criticism for not requiring its hosts to pay local hotel taxes. In 2014, the organization switched its position and agreed to charge a 14% hotel tax to all San Francisco users and 11.5% tax to Portland users. In additional to these, Airbnb visitors utilizing their host properties for illegal purposes. For instance, New York experts revealed a prostitution ring that leased condo through Airbnb week by week and utilized them in lieu of hotel rooms.

Yes, it will be a threat to the hotel industry, as millennials prefer local experience than hotels. Airbnb gives a reasonable alternative to hotels, it will be an ideal substitute for all travel needs. Since Airbnb has its foundations in casual stays, including those of shared rooms, we anticipate that it will be a more appealing choice for travelers on a financial plan. On the other hand, business travelers and vacation people generally stick with hotels than Airbnb as they don't care about the budget. Business travelers specifically are less sensitive as they are mostly sponsored by the companies.



ZERVAS, G., PROSERPIO, D., & BYERS, J. W. (2017). The Rise of the Sharing Economy: Estimating the Impact of Airbnb on the Hotel Industry. Journal Of Marketing Research (JMR), 54(5), 687-705.

Huey-Yeh, L., Mei-Hsiang, W., & Min-Jhen, W. (2017). A STUDY OF AIRBNB USE BEHAVIOR IN THE SHARING ECONOMY. International Journal Of Organizational Innovation, 10(1), 38-47.

Dave Roos -

1.  Health and Wellness Travel (20 points)

Health and wellness tourism contains elements of culinary tourism, adventure tourism and eco/sustainable tourism (among others).  Please discuss how upscale, urban hotels (such as InterContinental Hotel's EVEN concept or Hilton) incorporate these various tourism motivators in order to increase the satisfaction of their guests.  Do you believe that competitors need to react with similar products in order to maintain market share?  

Health and wellness tourism is a trend for health-conscious consumers looking to improve their welfare. Wellness tourism is a pursuit of maintaining or enhancing one's personal well-being during travel. The wellness concept originally based on the use of natural hot and mineral springs forms the popularity for Health and wellness tourism. These programs and facilities became a worldwide traveler attraction throughout the last decade of the twentieth century and this trend shows no sign of subsiding, with glorious prospects for continued growth  in  the  future. In Japan, where the most attraction is that the traditional Onsen (hot spring bath) the wellness tradition revolves around the use of hot springs by those who enjoy sharing a shower in the evening after work. Onsen-type spas in Japan are, however, used differently from the spas of European tradition, often quick changing into standard in Japan too because the implicit health benefits of Japanese mineral springs are used additional explicitly to attract customers. However, there are 26,000 natural energy springs in Japan and also the Japanese preference for authentic hot water bathing as a social custom, European-style wellness centers that incorporate bathing with ‘beauty therapy' are unlikely to be serious competition to the standard Onsen within the immediate future. Wherever potential, health and wellness spa facilities use the natural environment as a focus point. Sustainability of the surrounding natural setting and the water resource becomes one among the main issues of each the operator and therefore the traveler would prefer this spa compared to artificial ones.  IHG wellness hotels might be the pioneer brand in U.S to have a separate brand dedicated for wellness tourism. Their rooms, food menus everything incorporates healthiness. Desserts are served in small portions. Hilton on the other hand introduced ‘Five Feet to Fitness' which is an in-room wellness concept. These rooms have fitness equipment present in their room and guest are welcome to use those. Not only in U.S, countries worldwide try to incorporate wellness tourism in a medium or low level. Spa is a part of health and wellness tourism. Spa is an element of luxury travel., and grown 58% by 2007 and are valued around $94 billion. Many competitors like Marriott and Hyatt are investing into wellness tourism with new concepts like Air purified rooms, aromatherapy, Vitamin-C infused shower. Resorts are known for advertising wellness but current scenario takes a twist by infusing in-room fitness in urban hotels. Hyatt hotels acquired Miraval spa and resorts to target the global wellness tourism industry.

Competitors need to invest in promoting wellness tourism as its gaining huge popularity among the millennials who are health conscious too. About 47% of the travelers support wellness tourism. Wellness tourism generated $494 billion in revenue increasing of about 12.5% from 2012 compared to original forecast of 9%. I think hotels should take interest in health and wellness and invest in low, medium or high level depending on their size. I don't think this is a trend that fades away in a short period. It's going to change the definition of tourism.


Erfurt-Cooper, P., & Cooper, M. (2009). Health and Wellness Tourism: Spas and Hot Springs. Bristol, UK: Channel View Publications.

Stará, J., & Peterson, C. (2017). Understanding the Concept of Wellness for the Future of the Tourism Industry: A Literature Review. Journal of Tourism & Services, 8(14), 18-29.

All is wellness: Travel Weekly

Jeri Clausing -

4. Changing Definitions & Old World Hospitality (20 points)

As discussed in class, the definition of hospitality is changing.  Do you think that this is compatible with the interest in Old World Hospitality experiences?  Why or why not?  Where do the two concepts diverge if you disagree and where do they converge if you agree?

Old world hospitality is having or displaying some good characteristics or qualities from old world customs especially from parts of Europe. i.e.: European standards and customs. The term hospitality has significantly changed from the time of baby boomers to millennials. The birth of Boutique hotels paved way for Old world hospitality with charms. Availability of heritage structures that appear to increase enthusiasm to hoteliers and visitors, yet experts are dynamic in arranging and saving so that due respect must be given to regulations and advancement pressure. Much attention is given to the structure, for their architecture and its importance in heritage world and retaining the original structure but converting into a hotel.

Tourism that are cultural themed are their main target audience. Many heritage building in Northeastern Asia and Subcontinents of India have converted their palaces and Old structures into Unique hotels that provides you with the charms of old hospitality. Hotels chains like TAJ and Oberoi in India maintain a separate brand called Heritage hotels to provide the charms of their country to the western world. Vienna is the city that overflows with Old World charm and hidden garden restaurants. Istanbul in turkey has three Old World hotels which shows the rick cultural traces from Ottoman Empire, these hotels contain the traditional Hammam (Turkish bath) New World hospitality are also most welcome by the millennials where the hotels follow millennial trends like farm to table, zero wastage, Organic foods, preserving local culture and heritage. But some consumers like to experience something different from normal – like personal, handmade and local. These old world hospitality trends are quite promising for European hotel chains which upgrades from dull and old rooms to shiny bathrooms, flat TV screens, free Wi-Fi and spotless rooms. These hotels are defined by the term Old World Hospitality with charms. These charms are the converging lines between Old World and the New world hospitality. OWH (Old world hospitality) can contribute to the new world hospitality by purchasing from local farms and promote local markets to their guests. Hotels in Barcelona and Dubai incorporate ceramic tiles in their guestrooms and bathrooms which are old fashioned, are coming back with new designs adding charm to OWH in their New world hotels. The old touch is the new trend!


In Vienna, New Energy Amid Old-World Charm

Catherine Allchin -

Laden, T. M. (2017, May). The Turkey trifecta: these three high-end hotels mix Istanbul's old-world opulence with modern splendor. TravelAge West, 52(11), 30. Retrieved from

Eden, A. (2009, September). Ceramics can evoke modern or Old World. Hotel Design, 56. Retrieved from

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