Corporate image, loyalty, and commitment in the consumer travel industry

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Abstract:

This article examines the impact and interrelationship of corporate image, satisfaction, and commitment on customer loyalty in the travel industry. A corporate image–commitment–loyalty model was developed and tested. Partial least squares (PLS) was used to test the direct and indirect linkages between the four variables, and an alternative model was proposed. The tourism and travel industry is highly price sensitive and competitive with low levels of customer loyalty. Customer loyalty is a valuable asset in highly competitive markets, and understanding factors affecting customer loyalty is important to travel agencies who are seeking ways to maintain a strong customer base. The results of a mail survey conducted in New Zealand indicate that corporate image has a positive significant influence on customer commitment and customer satisfaction. Affective commitment is the focal point in the relationship and contributed most in predicting customer loyalty. The influence of customer satisfaction, on the other hand, contributed a much smaller effect. The key implications for travel agencies are build strong emotional bonds with customers and improve corporate image through trust and service delivery.

Keywords: PLS; commitment; corporate image; loyalty; tourism; travel

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/0267257X.2010.549195

Affiliations: 1: Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand 2: ins Consulting Shanghai, China

Publication date: May 1, 2012

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