Stylish virtual tour: exploring fashion’s influence on attitude and satisfaction in VR tourism

Maher Georges Elmashhara*, Marta Blazquez, Jorge Julião

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Purpose: This study aims to investigate the influence of different virtual fashion styles on attitude and satisfaction within virtual reality (VR) tourism experiences. The investigation considers the mediating effect of perceived attractiveness, popularity, novelty and weirdness, as well as the moderating role of self-congruence with avatar clothing and the desire for unique products. Design/methodology/approach: This research uses a quantitative experimental approach. Initially, a three-step pilot study (N = 201) was conducted to select avatar fashion styles for the main investigation. In the primary study, participants (N = 326) engaged with one out of four fashion style conditions to select attire for their avatars and then completed a self-administered survey. Data analysis involved paired-sample t-tests, multivariate analysis of variance and Hayes’ PROCESS Models. Findings: The results show that presenting fantasy avatar fashion styles leads to a decrease in perceived attractiveness and popularity, while concurrently increasing perceptions of novelty and weirdness which in turn exert a negative influence on attitude and satisfaction with the virtual fitting room (VFR). However, these relationships change when considering the moderating role of self-congruence with avatar clothing and the desire for unique products. Practical implications: VR tourism experience providers and designers can use research findings to bolster positive attitude and enhance satisfaction with VFR; an important first step that strongly affects the rest of the VR tourist journey. Originality/value: This study contributes to tourism research by exploring the intersection of immersive technologies and virtual fashion. It emphasizes the enhancement of critical touchpoints like the VFR, moving beyond a sole focus on VR adoption, to improve the overall virtual tourist experience.
Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2024

Keywords

  • Attitude
  • Desire for unique product
  • Satisfaction
  • Self-congruence
  • Tourism experience
  • Virtual fashion
  • Virtual reality

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