Heterogeneity in risk and safety perceptions of international tourists
The travel decisions of international tourists have, over the past decade, been significantly affected by external events, such as the fear of pandemics and terrorist attacks. Yet, little attention has been paid to heterogeneity among tourists with respect to risk perceptions. The question whether some tourist segments are less sensitive to external risks and thus more attractive to tourism industry in times of crises remains largely unanswered. This study conducts a data-driven segmentation of heterogeneity in the tourist population with respect to perceived risks of international travel and assesses if market segments with different risk perception patterns are distinct in other behavioral and personal characteristics. Additionally the study includes nationality as a proxy for "cultural background", here analyzed in light of Hofstede's (1983) model. Practical implications are discussed.