Exploring the Role of Next-Generation Virtual Technologies in Destination Marketing


Destination marketing; Virtual reality experience; Wearable devices; Visit intentions; Cultural heritage site


This study aims to investigate the impact of virtual reality experiences created with the newest generation of wearable devices on the intention to visit sites and attractions in a destination. To this end, the paper investigated whether the perceived visual appeal (PVA) of virtual reality and the emotional involvement (EI) of users had a positive impact on the behavioral intentions to visit a cultural heritage site in a destination. Data was collected from visitors via a survey at a destination in Naples (Italy). Study results revealed that the PVA of the virtual reality experience with wearable devices had a positive and significant effect on behavioral intentions towards the site featured in the virtual experience. Moreover, PVA had a positive effect on EI. This study is among the first to empirically investigate the influence of virtual reality experiences, enabled by the latest wearable devices, on destination visit intentions. Study results are relevant for destination marketing organizations seeking to develop effective technology-based marketing strategies that address the pre-visit, on-site and post-visit phase of the visitors' journey. The paper offers specific theoretical and managerial implications.

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Journal of Destination Marketing and Management




Rosen College of Hospitality Management

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