An exploratory study on Chinese tourists’ visitation to a U.S. National Park

Rui Li, Yu xia Lin, Zachary D. Miller, Chengcheng Su, Bing Pan, B. Derrick Taff, Alan Graefe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study adopts semi-structured interviews in Grand Teton National Park (GRTE) in the United States and aims to understand Chinese tourists’ decision-making processes and experiences. The results reveal that geographic distances, China's unique technical infrastructure and policies influence Chinese tourists’ information sources and reasons for visiting GRTE. Their information sources are unique, and their decisions for visiting GRTE are ad-hoc in nature. Chinese tourists’ expectations and experiences, such as planned places to visit and activities to participate in, are influenced by a cultural dimension of a high level of collectivism. The study also shows that Chinese tourists’ sense of complacency, respect for nature, comfort with detachment from nature, and beliefs in fate and destiny affect their satisfaction with their experiences, compared to domestic American tourists. The study then provides a conceptual model of how these national differences affect Chinese tourists’ information source choices, decision-making, expectations, satisfaction, and intentions to return in the future. The model may overthrow the classic linear process of consumer decision making framework in a cross-country context.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)79-93
Number of pages15
JournalTourism Recreation Research
Issue number1
StateAccepted/In press - 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Cultural Studies
  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


Dive into the research topics of 'An exploratory study on Chinese tourists’ visitation to a U.S. National Park'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this