Journal Article

Experiential aspects of tourism gift consumption


This article addresses how consumers make use of fantasy, feelings, and fun when deciding, giving, and consuming gifts of tourism and leisure. Despite little industry awareness, consumers are engaging with such behaviour because tourism gifts offer considerable scope for the creative expression of donor–recipient relationships. This UK-based interpretive qualitative study captured data from donors, recipients, and tourism and leisure providers. The feelings (emotions), fantasies (imagination and dreaming), and fun (playfulness) were interrogated through the behavioural phases of gift decision making, gift exchange, post-exchange, and gift consumption. A range of emotions were displayed by donors and recipients at different stages in the gift-giving process; donor decision making in groups for created gifts was particularly charged. Fantasies were evident both for donors planning gifts and for recipients. As an intangible gift, means of exchange allowed for creative mechanisms beyond the classic wrapping strategies associated with physical gifts. The ‘decoy’ strategy stimulated the recipient’s imagination to conjure fantastical scenarios. Fun or playfulness was built into many of the gifts and often related to an element of ‘surprise’, an attribute of the perfect gift (e.g. Belk, 1996) in Western societies.

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Clarke, Jackie

Oxford Brookes departments

Department of Marketing
Oxford Brookes Business School


Year of publication: 2013
Date of RADAR deposit: 2020-10-26

Creative Commons License This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License

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This RADAR resource is the Accepted Manuscript of Experiential aspects of tourism gift consumption


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