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E-PORTFOLIO: THOMAS MOSER Module 2: Consumer Behaviour in Tourism Literature: Kozak, M. (2010). Holiday taking decisions - The role of spouses. Tourism Management, 31, pp. 489-494 Exercise 1: Scientific reflection: Kozak (2010) discusses the results based on 226 questionnaires. Please, critically reflect the scientific research process and illustrate the common thread of the paper by summarizing the problem statement, the research questions, method(s) used and final discussion of the data. What is the major result of his study regarding the derivation of managerial and research qualifications?

Introduction Several times a day people are in situations where decisions are required. Especially in buying situations consumers need to make clear decisions. As a result, the decision making process is one of the basic essentials of marketing and has gained big attention in research during the last decades. Problem Statement Past research mainly concentrated on group decision making of married couples and the relationships between parents and children. Moreover, the focus of literature reviews was on the distribution of gender roles and the influence of children on family decision making. Most studies relate specifically to the intention of family members to make a decision whether to go on a vacation. Decision tactics over the choice of products found only little attention. Hence, up to now only a limited number of empirical studies on testing the validity of decision making models in tourism and hospitality exists, of which even a smaller number tries to assess the relationship between the use of decision tactics in the decision making process and the level of satisfaction with the purchased product. Research questions: To be able to investigate the subject of decision tactics and their impact on the consumer satisfaction, Kozak formulated the following research questions: 1) Which are the most dominant decision tactics in the planning situation? 2) How do decision tactics differ regarding the two product categories of frequently purchased products and infrequently purchased products? 3) Is there a correlation between decision tactics and the level of consumer satisfaction? Methodology Based on previous studies on family and group decision making, the investigation is carried out with fullystructured questionnaires. In comparison to former studies this survey takes a more detailed specification of product categories into consideration and includes a list of 10 major decision tactics with a 6-point Likert scale, from '1' 'totally disagree' to '6' 'totally agree'. As the first part does not include any questions concerning the consumer satisfaction and the recommendation attitude an additional part is included in the survey. To test the

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quality of the questionnaire a pilot survey was conducted. The approach was to only ask married couples to participate. The investigation's results are based on 226 fully-marked questionnaires. Findings: Results of literature review Former literature states that the decision making process involves both dependent and independent decisions. The process can be one time husband-dominant and another time wife-dominant. However, literature shows that there exist also forms of cooperative decision making. Joint decisions are the most dominant form of family decisions, related to tourism and hospitality and tourism. Nonetheless, the gender role still plays a significant role in decision making. As males tend to act more in information search, women have the greatest effect on the selection of vacation destinations. With the change of women's roles within the society the decision making power of women is becoming more and more dominant. Results of empirical study The survey shows that the type of decision tactics depends on both the situation and the type of products. Moreover, the findings confirm that travel decisions receive a higher degree of joint consideration and the partner's opinion is essential. This research found out that compromise is the most often used tactic in both categories, followed by persuasion. However, word-of-mouth recommendations and the involvement of children in the decision making are considered as very low influential factors. Furthermore, the study results show a positive correlation between cooperative decision making and the level of satisfaction and the intention to recommend. Implications Research implications: The study constitutes an important input to the existing literature. Beside the exploration of joint decision making process of spouses, the study also investigates the differences of decision tactics throughout various product categories (vacation and eating out). Managerial implications: As in other industries, family groups as small social groups represent the basic customer portfolio in the tourism and hospitality industry and have the highest contribution to the corporate income. Practitioners need to explore how the conflict-resolving tactics work between spouses to develop marketing programs that help them to ease their decision making process. Hence, families can avoid conflicts easier and experience more satisfaction. However, entrepreneurs need to consider the preferences of both spouses.

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Conclusion and critical reflection The research tries to define decision tactics and strategies used for several consumer goods, including vacation and travel, and to assess the effect of decision tactics on the consumer satisfaction level. However, as other surveys this study includes several limitations. First of all, in comparison to former studies, Kozak does not confirm that consumers' satisfaction with their marriage may influence the decision behavior and outcomes. Furthermore, the study lacks a variety of demographic characteristics. As the study sample was linked to a certain target group, those who were affiliated with a university in western Turkey, the socio-demographic variation was limited. In addition to that, future research should concentrate on national differences in the decision making process, as several other countries have already conducted similar studies.

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References Kozak, M. (2010). Holiday taking decisions - The role of spouses. Tourism Management, 31, pp. 489494.

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Module 2: Consumer Behaviour in Tourism  
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