ood Tourism: The Melaka Gastronomic Experience

ood Tourism: The Melaka Gastronomic Experience



Food Tourism: The Melaka Gastronomic Experience


Xue Fa Tong, David Yoon Kin Tong, Wai Sern Tam,

Classification JEL



Food tourism constitutes a revitalising role in tourist enterprise management. In recent years, gastronomic experiences have emerged as strategic commodity in differentiating and branding tourist destinations. Contemporary tourists are seeking authentic gastronomic routes to further enrich their cultural and experiential journeys in their destination choices. In the UNESCO World Heritage City of Melaka, the appeal of unique Malaysian cultural food heritage has also drawn its fair share of food tourists. The potential economic impact of food tourism on the tourism industry is considerably significant. However, the conversion of a region into a differentiated culinary territory is a challenge for tourism destinations. Therefore, it is necessary to identify the mechanism of tourists’ perceived value on the culinary landscape of their destination choice. This study aims to analyse the effects of novelty and online reviews on food tourists’ motivation towards their destination choice in Melaka. The study further explicates the mediating effect of marketing and advertising on novelty and online review. Data were collected in the vicinity of Melaka tourist attractions by means of quota sampling. Identified visitors were intercepted and subjected to e-questionnaires using iPad. A total of 184 samples were collected via this paperless method. Collated data was analysed using SPSS and AMOS. Results from the analyses indicate novelty and online review to have effect on tourists’ motivation. In mediating the indirect effect of marketing and advertising, we found a partial mediation on novelty and motivation but a full mediation on online review and motivation. The study outcome holds practical implications in efforts to establish favourable destination image in Melaka through credible marketing and advertising activities. An improved tourist expectations on destination choices warrants post-experience satisfaction, favourable online reviews, visitors’ loyalty and revisit intentions. In this context, food tourism will be better positioned for sustainable tourism revenue growth.


Food tourism, motivation, novelty, online reviews, marketing and advertising.

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