Volunteer tourism: Exploring motivations, benefits, and reciprocity
LE3 .A278 2017
Bachelor of Community Development
Volunteer tourism has become an increasingly popular type of tourism that has been associated with providing an experience that positively impacts the tourist, host community, and the environment. Despite the good nature that can be associated with volunteer tourism there are many critiques that have addressed the effectiveness and real value of volunteer tourism. This paper provides a review of volunteer tourism using 7 Canadian student participants and 5 facilitators on a university student volunteer tourism trip to India. The purpose of this study was to gain a better understanding of volunteer tourism, explore motivations, perceived benefits, the role of reciprocity, and the role of the facilitators and community in the planning of this volunteer tourism experience. Qualitative research was used in this study in the form of semi-structured interviews with the students and the facilitators that were part of the experience. This led to an analysis of the effects of volunteer tourism on the students. The thesis also reviews the volunteer tourists’ (student’ s) motivations, the perceived benefits of volunteer tourism, the effect of reciprocity during this experience, and the role that facilitators played regarding planning, addressing challenges, and encouraging deeper under standing of the volunteer tourism experience.
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