The Impact of Culture and Gender on Customer Evaluations of Service Encounters

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Abstract

Despite the growing interest in cross-cultural research in the hospitality literature, little empirical research has been conducted on the effects of culture on consumers' assessment of service quality. This study was designed to close this gap by investigating culture-based biases in the evaluation of service encounters in a hotel and restaurant setting. Based on prior research in consumer behavior, gender was hypothesized to moderate the impact of culture-based biases. The results of this field study suggest that customer evaluations of service encounters might indeed be culture bound. Asian travelers gave significantly lower ratings to the service provider in both settings (hotel checkout and fine dining). Contrary to our predictions, customer gender failed to have an impact on service encounter evaluations. Power distance and communication context are used as a theoretical framework to discuss the results obtained in this study.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)263-273
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Hospitality and Tourism Research
Volume24
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2000

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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Education
  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management

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