Tourists' mental representations of complex travel decision problems

Benedict G.C. Dellaert, Theo A. Arentze, Oliver Horeni

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)


Tourism research has long recognized the complexity of many decisions that tourists make and proposed models to describe and analyze tourist decision processes. This article complements this previous research by proposing a view that moves away from the process of making a decision and instead investigates how tourists mentally represent the decision problem. Mental representations of travel decision problems allow tourists to evaluate the decision utility of the different available alternatives before they are chosen. We discuss the modeling and measurement of tourists' mental representations of complex travel decision problems and provide directions for future research that focuses on the dynamics of tourist mental representations both within a single travel decision framework and over the tourist travel life cycle.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3-11
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Travel Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 16 Oct 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • dynamics in tourist decision making
  • mental representations of decision problems
  • tourist decisions

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