Holiday Decision-making

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Phase 2  Assignment Brief
Consumer Behaviour and Holiday
In this task you consider how consumers approach making decision.  You look at some of the theoretical approaches in this area and apply them to the purchase of a holiday. Learning Objectives
The project will help you:
• To recognise the concept of the business organisation operating within the parameters of a changing external environment. • To describe a range of theories related to consumer buyer behaviour and their role in analysing markets • To appraise your own and others' motivation in the light of a range of theoretical perspectives of how people behave in groups and organisations The Task

Read the case study and answer the questions set at the end.   
The best answers will show most or all of the following:
• An understanding of relevant consumer behaviour theory • An ability to apply this theory to the purchase of a holiday • A careful reading and understanding of the case study provided • An ability to go beyond repeating what is provided in the case by analysing it in relation to the questions set • Well-structured, logical answers to the questions posed • Accurate and complete referencing

• Answers directly addressing each of the three questions set Resources
You have the following help available:
• Lecture slides and your notes from the consumer behaviour lecture in Week 10. • The chapter on consumer behaviour in the textbook
• The additional notes provided with this case
• Lecture slides on writing case study answers
• Lecture slides on referencing
Submission Details
You hand in a hard copy at the start of your first pod session in Week 12 (the first after the Lunar New year break)  A Case study on holiday decision - making
Decision-making: an adaptable and opportunistic ongoing process  
Adapted from a case study by Alain Decrop, University of Maumur, Belgium in Consumer Behaviour A European Perspective
By Michael Solomon, Gary Bamossy, Soren Askegaard and Margaret K Hogg Third Edition FT Prentice Hall
Traditional Views
Consumers have traditionally been portrayed as rational and risk averse.  As a consequence, consumer decision-making has been presented from a problem-solving or information processing perspective.  These models start from the assumption that any consumer need or desire creates a problem within the individual.  The consumer undertakes to solve that problem by deciding a course of action in order to satisfy this need or desire.  Decision-making typically entails five steps:  

• Need recognition
• Information search
• Evaluation of alternatives
• Product choice (purchase)
• Decision outcomes (post-purchase evaluation)
An alternative view has seen consumers' decision-making as a hierarchy of cognitive, affective and behavioural responses (ie the C-A-B sequence).  Within the context of these two main approaches, existing models of holiday decision-making have seen it as:  

• a rational process implying high involvement, high risk perception, extensive problem-solving and
• information search and a sequential evolution of plans which starts from the generic decision to go on holiday. Study of Holiday Decision-Making
The objective of this case is to show how consumer decision-making - within the context of going on holiday - may vary from these traditional models.  We followed the holiday decision-making process of 27 Belgian households (single, couples, families and groups of friends) over the course of a year.  They were interviewed in-depth four times: three times before their summer holiday and once after it.  Many interesting findings emerged which challenged traditional ways of understanding consumer decision-making. Holiday Decision-Making Process

Holiday decision-making proved to be an ongoing process which was not necessarily characterised by fixed sequential stages, and which did...
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