University to whenever he wants (Cohen, 1974, p.531).


 University of Stavanger


Norwegian School of Hotel Management

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MR220 Advanced Tourism

Candidate Number: 1431

“Tourist Experience”


is a very interesting topic – there is a very thin line between someone who is
a tourist and someone who is not and there are many other tourist types in the
middle (Cohen, 1974, p.547). There are many ways to explain who/what is a
tourist, some of them suggest that a tourist is a person that travels
temporarily but someone who still has a permanent residence, even during the
trip, somewhere on the globe which he can go back to whenever he wants (Cohen,
1974, p.531). Some more theories suggest that a tourist is simply someone on a
tour, a person on a distant expedition, person on a one-time trip, a person who
is just traveling with no specific purpose, ex. Business, etc. (Cohen, 1974, p.532)
or just a traveler who is traveling voluntarily (Cohen, 1974, p.531).

this paper, more emphasis would be given on tourist experience influenced by
social control and tourist experience when one’s holiday destination is
perceived as a total institution.

Tourist experience

and Wang (2004) talked about two scholarly definitions and put a tourist
experience into two approaches:

1.     A
social science approach where they emphasized on a tourist’s peak experience – mostly
covers the sightseeing attractions and being motivated for tourism – bit different
from daily life rituals (Quan & Wang, 2004, p.298), and

2.     Marketing/management
based on where the tourist is located/living, also, importance is also given to
typical consumer expectations from a leisure product such as transportation,
living place, food servings and other relative services (Quan & Wang, 2004,

many scholars and professionals have explained tourist experience in many
different ways, most of them agree on tourist experience mainly focusing on the
customer’s experience as an ongoing process of work that gives some meaning to
the individual (Zatori, 2013, p. 32).

experience has kept on changing from the 18th century and ahead in
the journey of discovering more, going to places where no man has been to and
overcoming one’s fear as explained under accelerated sublime. (Bell &
Lyall, 2002, p.22-24)


The Accelerated Sublime

and adventure tourism are such fields of tourist experience that makes a
traveler (re)live the sublime. People that choose such type of tourism no
longer just wander around the landscape, but accelerate through them with
barely a tunnel vision through a thoroughly carved space, viewing such
landscapes while moving in an accelerated manner where only a video camera would
be able to capture the experience in its full abyss, for example, white water
rafting, paragliding etc. (Bell & Lyall, 2002, p.21). Overgoing such daring
experiences, travelers have not only discovered, experienced and demonstrated
their adventures and spirit that cannot be defeated, but they also have been showing
their skills as decent consumers of traveling and leisure commodity in the late
20th and 21st century (Bell & Lyall, 2002, p.22). But
it wasn’t always like that.

the eighteenth century and prior to that, one remained at the base of a sublime
and gazed toward the possessed and perilous habitation of the Gods. In any
case, as time passed, sublime fell on its side. It turned into only a matter if
distance and journey. In the nineteenth century, with innovation and
industrialization peaking individuals accomplished manufactured magnificence:
the railroad cuttings, passages and viaducts bravely vanquished the mountains,
testing the old attitude of a tourist (Bell & Lyall, 2002, p.22).

Bell and John Lyall mention Thomas Mann claiming that modern travelers love the
natural wonders of the earth and definitely the places that are still not
discovered by man which still remain a mystery and open for every enthusiast to
explore, such as potholes and caves and the deep bottom of the ocean (Bell &
Lyall, 2002, p.23).

in the 21st century, a massive amount of people live their lives and
even travel around the world without even getting in touch with the wildlife. In
this new world we are all one some ways strangers to each other and at the same
time accommodated. (Bell & Lyall, 2002, p.24).

business-minded people with the mindset of capitalizing the travel experience
try to make new ways to pump up the adventurous travelers (Bell & Lyall,
2002, p.22).

make progress in this business, only taking guests to take a gander at heavenly
nature might be deficient. Inventive business visionaries devise novel types of
physical interests in the scene. For instance, by increasing the scale and threat,
the well geared voyagers experience the immense sublime. A fifteen-minute
stroll in the alpine of New Zealand transforms into a half day excursion for
the excited tourist (Bell & Lyall, 2002, p.26).

are consumers of the culturally constructed hyper-sublime” – Bell & Lyall,
2002, p.27.

activities pump up the adrenaline way higher than one’s daily life routines;
tourists feel the scenery approaching straight to their faces like they’ve never
experienced before (Bell & Lyall, 2002, p.27).

tourism, as well as the fascinating family tourism experience adds to the
journey to satisfy the need to gather stories for one’s wistfulness, similarly
as one takes photos of their kids, the house or the wonderful moments that
follow. In the present atmosphere of individualistic approach to most of the
scenarios, whoever travels the most can compete with other fellow travelers in
touristic experiences (Bell & Lyall, 2002, p.34).

that being said, to make one’s experience more organized, guidebooks somewhat
streamline one’s tourist experience with its information (Dann, 1996, p.85).

Tourist experience influenced by
Social Control

experience is impacted by guidebooks in a substantial scale with its capacity
to control the two collectors and referents by its content (Dann, 1996, p.84). Dann
emphasizes on Boorstin’s point stating that different sights and happenings as
portrayed by the guidebooks were controlled
as much as they depended on the expected desires of the traveler (Dann, 1996,

implicated in a closed circuit which is formed by obligatory stops in places
consecrated by guidebooks” – Cassou, (1967:29)

in the guidebook have been said to be “molding tourists’ expectations” by
Jafari and Gardener (1991:20-1, 30) as stated by Dann (1996). Tourist and
tourist experience is adapted and modified by their guidebook, to visit certain
spots and to experience them on the way incited by advertising. As such, the
feeling of commitment is viable just to the degree that it reflects genuine or
made-up desires in the subject. Incredible and helpless tourist spots move
towards becoming havens to the travelers which totally should be seen before
one can unwind, take a breath or continue to new destinations. (Dann, 1996, p.85)

of the statements above, Dann notices Hoggart promoting a kind of anti-tourism
by advising travelers to maintain a strategic distance from the well-known
landmarks and explore the less popular sights instead, perhaps set up a new
to-do list of places to discover and absorb a different tourist experience (Dann,
1996, p.87).

Tourist experience influenced by
Social Control in Hotels and Resorts

mentions Wood (1994) to be one of the very few researchers who endeavored a
sociological treatment of touristic accommodations saying that hotels are the
fundamental gurus of social control, thus, affecting tourist experience, they
work in a fashion to implement rules or laws, both holding back and empowering
human activity as per social norms (Dann, 1996, p.88).

an example of Britain using Wood’s analysis Dann explains that in the mid-1900s,
local travelers could maintain a strategic distance from the limitations of the
hotels and guest houses by taking an excursion to the holiday camps, which,
before the World War 1, were only an arrangement of tents until Billy Butlin,
in 1936 opened his first extravagant holiday camp in Skegness concentrating on
serving families (Dann, 1996, p.89), with great quality of nourishment,
entertainment and sanitation reasoning with other holiday-makers that they
should be more organized, thus, introducing the renowned “Redcoats” –
representatives who might lead, help, clarify and assist the visitors (Dann,
1996, p.89). It is also mentioned that greetings such as ‘Morning you happy
campers’ and ‘we know where you’re going’ are a reference to the heavily organized
world of holiday camps influence a tourist’s experience ever since 1936 (Dann, 2000,

camps, in that time, could likewise be alluded as concentration camps.
Detecting this inferred lack of freedom, organizations now have dropped the
term ‘camp’ and have supplanted the term with ‘center’, ‘village’ or ‘holiday
world’ (Dann, 1996, p.89).

the contrary, Dann mentions Club Mediterranee (Club Med) as a working class
European adaptation of the holiday camp, maybe even more developed than a
holiday camp. Despite the fact that it concentrates on providing services more
to singles (Dann, 1996, p.89).

showcases Carol Barden’s (1994) observations on the positives and negatives of
Club Med considering the degree of control in the establishment. Barden says
that the club is really entertaining with a fixed one-time fee of $240 a night
but including interiors depicting Polynesian culture of traditions providing a
prison-like tourist experience. (Dann, 1996, p.90). With that being said he
also mentions MacCannell describing resorts as ‘factories of the tourism
industry’ referring to such destinations imprisoning visitors by making their
trips to the outside world impossible or impossibly expensive for Galapagos islands
(Dann, 1996, p.92) as well as confining the tourist in an organized coach tour isolating
them within a tour bus and not letting them feel the essence of India as the
real tourist experience would rather come from the streets, in shorter words,
encapsulating the tourists and turning them into a person who looks rather than
a person who becomes a part of the culture, affecting their tourist experience  (Dann, 1996, p.95)

Tourist experience influenced by
Social Control for the elderly

also talks about La Paloma Blanca, Mallorca treating the elderly in a manner of
a total institute taking in thought Erving Goffman’s (1973) idea of an
institution being a position of habitation and work where an extensive number
of like-arranged people, cut off from a wider society for an appreciable
timeframe, together lead an enclosed, formally directed round of life (Dann,
2000, p.84) where he points out a sharp division that exists amongst staff and
prisoners (travelers) (Dann, 2000, p.89). The general speculation is that the
separation and social rejection experienced by the elderly because of their age
in their home condition is some way or another persisted into the holiday
setting (Dann, 2000, p.83), hence, totally changing one’s tourist experience
and turning their holiday as more of an over paid temporary retirement home or
a mental hospital (Dann, 2000, p.84)

specifies a few points recognized by Goffman related with such institutions
influencing one’s tourist experience, for example,

1.         Sleeping under a similar authority in
similar location

2.         Submission to a general reasonable plan
which is firmly scheduled

3.         Division amongst staff and prisoners (guests)

4.         Wearing uniforms

5.         Requiring authorization to do special
activities (Dann, 2000, p.84)

also specifies Cohen’s (1972) perception of when a tourist goes to continents
or countries like India, Africa and so forth, organizations keep travelers in an
“environmental bubble” – a safe zone, shielding the tourist from
outside risks that hide past the limits of the hotel walls. Maybe that is one
reason why trip organizers in their prep-talk with elderly holiday makers
emphasize on the dangers related with wandering out alone, the risks of open
transport, encounters with street thugs, and so on. (Dann, 2000, p.85) Subsequently,
influencing one’s tourist experience by bringing discipline to the holiday
environment through a multiple rule structure that works in different ways on
various levels within the holiday confinements/institutions (Dann, 2000, p.86)


experience is a social science approach emphasized on a tourist’s peak
experience (Quan & Wang, 2004, p.298), and/or Marketing/management based on
where the tourist’s location which can be affected by social control
implemented by guidebooks in a substantial scale with its capacity to control
the two collectors and referents by its content (Dann, 1996, p.84) and hotels
being the fundamental gurus of social control by working in a fashion to
implement rules or laws, both holding back and empowering human activity as per
social norms (Dann, 1996, p.88). Organizations keep travelers in an
“environmental bubble” – a safe zone, shielding the tourist from
outside risks that hide past the limits of the hotel walls and emphasize on the
dangers related with wandering out alone, the risks of open transport,
encounters with street thugs, and so on (Dann, 2000, p.85) which may or may not
be helpful to the tourists depending on 
their reason of travel whether it is to discover the undiscovered (Bell &
Lyall, 2002, p.23) or to simply (re)live the sublime (Bell & Lyall, 2002,






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