بازنشستگی و زمینه گردشگری در بیانات بازنشستگان
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی||تعداد کلمات|
|22961||2008||20 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید||9403 کلمه|
Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Annals of Tourism Research, Volume 35, Issue 4, October 2008, Pages 859–878
This article examines central themes in traveling retirees’ perceptions of tourism and travel. It aims to understand the place and value of tourism in retirement. The study described in this article focused on relatively recent retirees, and utilized in-depth semi-structured interviews with a purposive sample of 20 male and female retirees involved in a “Learning in Retirement” program in a mid-sized southeastern U.S. city. Results identified five themes, associating post retirement tourism not only with the new life phase, but also with lifelong interests, leisure activities, retirees’ social networks and perceived constraints. These findings are discussed in light of general theories of adaptation and aging
During the past decade older adults have been drawing increased attention from tourism researchers, as well as from service providers. Several trends have influenced this interest, including the aging of populations all over the world, as well as changes in older adults’ sociodemographics and travel patterns, making them an appealing target population for the global tourism industry (for review see Patterson, 2006 and Schröder and Widmann, 2007). The older adult segment is attractive not only because of its current size and purchasing power, but also as a result of demographic and social forecasts (e.g., Hossain et al., 2003, Lohmann and Danielsson, 2001 and Schröder and Widmann, 2007), which argue that it is going to continue to grow rapidly in the next decade or two. Studies examining tourism in later life have explored several areas of interests. Some of them have focused on descriptive characteristics of older adults’ tourism behavior (e.g., Georggi and Pendyala, 1999, Hossain et al., 2003 and Javalgi et al., 1992) and on the associations between various sociodemographics and seniors’ tourism (e.g., Peterson, 2007 and Zimmer et al., 1995). Other studies examined psychological aspects of tourism such as motivations for tourism (e.g., Sellick, 2004 and Shoemaker, 2000), factors influencing decision making (e.g., Bai et al., 2001 and Kerstetter and Pennington-Gray, 1999), and the benefits resulting from tourism (e.g., Botterill and Crompton, 1996, Milman, 1998, Roberson, 2001 and Statts and Pierfelice, 2003). Several researchers (e.g., Blazey, 1992, Fleischer and Pizam, 2002 and Hong et al., 1999) have examined constraints on tourism at an old age, and some have focused on older adults with chronic health conditions or physical impairments (e.g., Burnett and Bender Baker 2001). Another stream of research has addressed specific tourism forms such as adventure tourism (e.g., Muller and Cleaver 2000), educational tourism (e.g., Gibson 1998), eco tourism (e.g., Cleaver and Muller 2002) or multigenerational tourism (e.g., Gardyn 2001). Some studies that examined tourism at an old age have compared older tourists with younger tourists. Along with some similarities between these groups, certain differences were found as well. For example, You and O’Leary (2000) found that tourists’ behavior changed over time in terms of travel propensity, destination activity participation and travel philosophy, and that both the age and generation cohort had an effect. Gibson and Yiannakis (2002) examined tourist role preference over the life course and found that while some roles decreased in frequency, others increased or demonstrated variability. Blazey (1992) focused on people over the age of 50 and examined the association between retirement status and travel activity. He found that retirees were more likely to travel for longer durations, with a larger number of persons in the travel party than those who were still working. They were also more frequently involved in package tours, less involved in a few travel related activities, and reported somewhat different constraints on traveling than non retirees. Other studies (e.g., Pennigton-Gray and Lane, 2001 and Shoemaker, 2000) examined older tourists exclusively, and tried to identify differentiated sub-segments within the older adults’ segment. All of them came to the conclusion that the older adult segment is very heterogeneous, and that there is significant variability among subgroups within the older age cohorts. Although studies examining tourism in later life are very diverse, they share two common features: most of them used quantitative methods, and many of them referred to chronological age when identifying older adults. Although later life may include several life-course phases, most studies have not classified different later life phases when relating to older adults. Researchers tended to not distinguish between an early retirement phase and a physical disability phase, or between seniors who have retired and those who continue to work. They simply related to a population that has passed a certain age. This approach may be criticized in light of the fact that age alone is not always effective in differentiating between older and younger people’s traveling patterns (Farana and Schmidt 1999). The dominance of the quantitative approach was recently criticized by Patterson (2006), who argued that researchers should further develop and apply qualitative methods that will enable ”to gain a better and more in-depth recollection and understanding of the actual trip experience” (p. 40). In addition, Sedgley, Pritchard and Morgan (2006) argued that relatively little research has sought to understand the meaning of tourism and leisure for older people, and that it is not possible to study older people’s behavior through ‘snapshot’ research, which isolates a single moment in time. They claimed that in order to fully understand how leisure and tourism experiences are constructed, researchers must try to engage with the context from which those experiences emerged. Their claim is consistent with former arguments of leisure and tourism scholars (e.g., Gibson and Yiannakis, 2002 and Iso-Ahola et al., 1994) who have used Levinson and colleagues’s framework (Levinson et al., 1978 and Levinson, 1996) to suggest that leisure and tourism should be understood within the context of people’s life structure. Inspired by these views the study described in this article aimed to focus on one later life phase while implementing a qualitative approach. The life phase examined was the ten years after retirement, a phase that is also regarded as the peak period in older adults’ tourism. Following retirement, lack of time is no longer as significant a constraint on tourism, and in most cases, health is not yet a significant constraint (Fleischer and Pizam 2002). Therefore, the retired individual has both the time and the health required for frequent and long travels, if they so choose. Retiring from work is one of the major transitions in later life. For some people it may be fraught with feelings of loss of meaning and purpose, but for others it signifies an opportunity for a new beginning (Gee and Baillie 1999). In most cases, the transition is not traumatic, but it does require some level of adjustment (Hyde et al., 2004 and Nuttman-Shwartz, 2004). While some retirees seek part-time or even full-time jobs, most devote their additional free time to leisure interests (Harvard Center for Health Communication, 2004 and Robinson and Godbey, 1997). Most evidence shows that leisure has a central role in explaining post retirement psychological well being (c.f., Fernandez-Ballesteros et al., 2001 and Nimrod, 2007). However, as people age, they face more constrains on their participation, including, among others, reduced income, declining health capacity and loss of significant partners (Jackson, 1993 and McGuire, 1984). As a result they tend to decrease their level of participation, especially in outdoor and physical activities (Janke et al., 2007 and Son et al., 2007). However, the effect of constraints may differ according to gender (Stanley and Freysinger 1995) or sociodemographic and health characteristics (Strain, Grabusic, Searle and Dunn 2002). Tourism may be considered as a form of leisure (Norris and Wall, 1994 and Thornton, 1995), as well as a context for leisure activities (Brey and Lehto, 2007 and Thomas and Butts, 1998). Tourism fits all definitions of leisure, but it has few distinct characteristics (Carr 2002). It is also hard to determine when and under what conditions tourism provides a leisure experience (Mannell and Iso-Ahola 1987), and some scholars have already argued that leisure and tourism are complementary and should be studied together (e.g., Ryan, 1994, Shaw and Williams, 1994 and Swain, 1995). Retirees place tourism higher in their priorities (Statts and Pierfelice, 2003). A central explanation for this tendency is that today’s retirees are healthier, richer, more educated, more independent and more obligation-free than older people in the past (Martin and Preston, 1994 and Zimmer et al., 1995). They are also distinct from former cohorts of retirees as many of them have travel experience, both in groups and alone, in connection with their work lives as well as a result of traveling for pleasure (Hayslip, Hicks-Patrick and Panek 2007). In her interviews with older adults aged 65–90, Gibson (2002) found that most of her interviewees were “busy travelers,” as they were engaged in many travels and for various purposes. For most of them, leisure-travel was a meaningful component of life, and it became so significant only upon retirement, when they felt that they had more freedom to enjoy it. However, after about five years for many of the retirees the novelty of traveling diminished or was constrained. Being able to travel can seem almost the “essence of retirement” (Weiss 2005:135) as there are no limitations on the timing of travel and the duration of stay any more. Some retirees celebrate their entrance to retirement by taking long-term trips. These travels serve as a neutral, transitional zone between voluntary or imposed endings and new beginnings, where summaries of the past and plans for the future are made (White and White 2002). For others, tourism provides a challenge, often shared with a spouse, which involves planning, solving unexpected problems, facing new situations, new people, food and so forth. Successful coping with that challenge is demonstrated by returning with stories and photographs to display (Weiss 2005). While some studies have examined the effects of the tourism experience on the older adults’ perceptions of life or themselves (e.g., Botterill and Crompton, 1996 and Roberson, 2001), the effect of life events on older tourists’ perceptions of tourism is under-researched. The current study aimed to examine how retirement is perceived in association with tourism by traveling retirees during the first years after retirement. Adopting the wide-view approach, suggested by Sedgley et al (2006), the study aspired to understand how the tourism experiences and behavior of relatively recent retirees are constructed, by engaging with the broad context of retirement from which those experiences emerged. More specifically, the study was designed to answer the following questions: How do relatively recently retired individuals, who travel, perceive tourism in association with their post retirement reality? Do recent retirees perceive post retirement tourism as time periods that stand apart from their daily lives, in which they can forget, or even escape, everything, or do they link them to other life domains? And if such linkages exist, does it characterize post retirement concerns only, or does it involve pursuits initiated prior to retirement? By answering these questions, a better understanding of older adults’ thoughts and behavior can be gained, and it may serve practitioners as well as theoreticians interested in the role of tourism in older adult development.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
The LIR group utilized in this study offered a promising context for studying relatively recent retirees’ perceptions of tourism among retirees who actually travel. When interpreting the study’s findings, one should be aware of the relatively lack of diversity among participants. Participants in this study were “learners” by definition, and relatively unimpeded by the circumstances that often keep others from participating in tourism activities. They represent a relatively highly educated, upper-middle class group of participants, and many of them had already traveled extensively through their paid employment or for other purposes. Yet, even within this relatively homogenous group of senior travellers, diversities were found, as implied by the findings. The use of a qualitative method, the focus on one later life phase, namely, the years following retirement, and the adoption of the wide-view approach (Sedgley et al 2006) that engaged with the broad context of retirement, led to some understandings regarding tourism and travel’s place and role in relatively recent retirees’ lives. In accordance with the grounded theory approach of Strauss and Corbin (1998), the findings described in this study offer a basis for a reconsideration of the role of tourism in recent retirees’ lives that may have more to say about successful adaptation to retirement than former studies that examined later life tourism. The study led to four theoretical propositions, which may also be supported by previous research and few existing theoretical frameworks. The first proposition is that tourism and travel take a central role in post retirement reality. This study does not argue that tourism is the essence of retirement, as suggested by Weiss (2005), but rather that retirement is an opportunity to travel. With more time available, and fewer work and family responsibilities, retirees feel that they can travel whenever they want, for as long as they wish, which also provides an opportunity to travel differently. Instead of rushing from one place to another and trying to see and explore as much as possible in a limited time, retirees can thoroughly explore a specific tourism destination, and even settle in it for a while and become temporary residents of the visited place. These findings are consistent with some former studies, such as the study by Statts and Pierfelice (2003), which showed that tourism is a desired long-term activity for retirees, or the study by Gibson (2002), which revealed that leisure-travel becomes a significant part of life upon retirement. The centrality of tourism in retirement is implied not only by the first theme (Retirement as an Opportunity), but also by the fact that the time spent in tourism and travels does not stand apart from retirees’ daily lives. Tourism corresponds with retirees’ present realities, as well as with pursuits and roles adopted prior to retirement. Two themes that emerged from the interviews suggested correspondence with post retirement issues, namely, the opportunity to travel as a result of having more free time, and negotiating constraints. Two other themes corresponded with pursuits initiated prior to retirement, namely, lifelong interests and social networks. Pre retirements pursuits were initiated prior to retirement, but lasted into retirement. An additional theme exposed the relationship between tourism and leisure activities, both continuing activities, which were adopted prior to retirement, and new activities that were added after retiring from work. These correspondences suggest that travels are not isolated periods in retirees’ lives, but rather an integral part of them. A graphic description of these correspondences is illustrated in Figure 1 (the numbers in the figure represent the theme suggesting each correspondence).The years immediately after retiring from work may be a peak in older adults’ tourism as they are characterized by relatively few constraints (Fleischer & Pizam, 2002). However, this does not mean that recent retirees do not face constraints that may limit their ability to travel. They simply face different constraints than in pre retirement (Blazey 1992). The second theoretical proposition suggests that retirees do not only travel because of fewer constraints, but also in spite of limiting conditions. Even though the participants in this study were a group of relatively healthy and engaged seniors, almost all of them mentioned facing some sorts of constraints. However, the way they coped and negotiated constraints reflected patterns of successful aging. The considerable research on constraint negotiation suggests that constraints do not inevitably prevent participation (e.g., Jackson and Rucks, 1993 and Shaw et al., 1991), and identified a number of negotiation strategies that are employed in a variety of ways (e.g., Hubbard and Mannell, 2001 and Jackson et al., 1993). Such strategies may be considered in terms of the Selective Optimization and Compensation (SOC) model of successful aging suggested by Baltes and colleagues ( Baltes and Baltes, 1990, Baltes and Carstensen, 1996, Freund and Baltes, 1998 and Freund and Baltes, 2002). This model defines successful aging in terms of making the best of what is possible, and argues that it is adaptive and healthy to respond to limiting factors that accompany aging. In the best case the response is being selective about the goals and activities chosen, optimizing the allocation of available resources for achieving those goals, and compensating for loss of available resources by finding alternative approaches and getting help in order to maintain an effective and satisfying involvement. Each one of the negotiation strategies defined in this study may be described in terms of SOC. While “Reduction” may be described as selection, “Finding substitutes” may be regarded as compensation. “Ignoring constraints,” which places the travel goal before anything else, has to do with prioritization, and may be considered as both selection and optimization, since once the most important goals are defined, most resources are devoted to achieving them. “Change in tourism style” may reflect some SOC dimensions, and even all of them simultaneously in some cases. Participants in this study utilized these strategies effectively, in a way that enabled most of them to travel despite limiting factors. This leads to suggesting that the first years after retirement are not only characterized by relatively few constraints on tourism, but also by a considerable capacity to successfully negotiate with them. The correspondence between post retirement travels and pre retirement pursuits (themes III–V) leads to a third theoretical proposition, which suggests that post retirement tourism is not only compensation for the losses accompanying retirement, as suggested in some respondents’ narratives; it also serves as a mechanism that helps retirees preserve pre retirement roles, whether familial, leisure, intellectual or work-related roles. The continuity theory (Atchley, 1989, Atchley, 1993 and Atchley, 1999) posits that continuity is a primary adaptive strategy for dealing with changes associated with normal aging, and that individuals wish to maintain stability in the same roles engaged in during their life course, even though their aging may impose obstacles to these roles. Individuals will tend to maintain continuity of psychological and social patterns adopted during their life course (e.g., attitudes, opinions, personality, preferences, and behavior) by developing stable activity patterns that will help them to preserve earlier ones. The tendency for continuity was reflected in this study’s findings; however, further theoretical clarification is needed. Continuity theory distinguishes internal continuity from external continuity (Atchley 1993), and suggests that older individuals try to maintain continuity of psychological and social patterns adopted during their life course (i.e., internal continuity) by developing stable activity patterns that help them to preserve earlier ones (i.e., external continuity). When interpreting this study’s findings in light of continuity theory, we may say that retirees use tourism to preserve internal continuity. But can we relate to their travel activities as external continuity? Since most respondents in this study also traveled before retirement, there is clearly some level of external continuity. However, continuity and change in tourism are also a matter of destination and travel style. External continuity may be the case for retirees who always travel to the same destinations, or own a vacation house, but it does not fit tourism narratives that focus on exploring unfamiliar destinations and experiencing new places, people, cultures, etc. A better theoretical framework for this pattern would be innovation theory (Nimrod and Kleiber 2007), which identifies two types of innovation in later life: self-reinvention innovation, which represents an opportunity for reinvention of self, and self-preservation innovation, which “represents an opportunity for renewal, refreshment and growth that is continuous in some respects from earlier interests and capacities” (p.17). It seems that many post retirement tourism experiences fall into the category of self-preservation innovation. The spillover found between leisure and tourism supports former arguments about the need to study them together (e.g., Ryan, 1994, Shaw and Williams, 1994 and Swain, 1995). Carr (2002) suggested viewing leisure and tourism behaviors as a continuum, affected by residual and tourist cultures. The effects depend, however, on the perceived differences between the home and vacation environments, and on personal characteristics and motivations. The fourth theoretical proposition is, that after retirement, when leisure becomes the center of everyday life and acquires new roles and meanings (Kozarevic 1972), the line between leisure and tourism is even thinner than before retiring. Brey and Lehto (2007) demonstrated three types of associations between daily leisure activities and vacation activities (positive, nondescript and negative), and suggested that strong positive association may be explained by a high level of involvement in an activity. The concept of serious leisure (Stebbins, 1992 and Stebbins, 2006) may be considered as the highest level of leisure involvement. It describes hobbyist, amateur and volunteer activities that are characterized by considerable commitment and perseverance, a well organized participant group of likeminded associates with whom members identify, and other durable psychological benefits. Serious leisure is particularly beneficial for retirees, as it may substitute work by offering structure, affiliation, responsibility, challenge and sense of essentiality. It is possible that retirees tend to be more involved in serious leisure, and therefore demonstrate more positive associations between everyday leisure and tourism activities. It is also possible that tourism becomes serious leisure, as suggested by certain behaviors, such as taking a course before traveling, or the “unpacking of suitcases,” that may allow for “serious tourism.” However, this proposition, like all aforementioned propositions, should be further explored in future research. The findings may have some practical implications for developing services and marketing strategies when targeting recent retirees. For example, the need for continuity characterizing the years after retirement may be used in promoting educational and eco tourism. The gift pattern suggested by the fifth theme may serve as consumer insight when developing communication strategy for intergenerational tourism or vacation units. However, the most significant contribution of this study is theoretical. The study strengthens Sedgley et al’s (2006) argument that in order to fully understand how leisure and tourism experiences are constructed, researchers must try to engage with the broad context from which those experiences emerged. Moreover, the spillover found between leisure and tourism suggests that studying one without the other might lead to limited understanding of both. In addition, even though there is still a lot of ground to be covered, and there are still many questions to be answered by additional research, the current study definitely supports further exploration of the role of tourism and travels in older adults’ developmental psychology, as well as its role in adjusting to the changes associated with later life.