Mobile technology and the tourist experience: (Dis)connection at the campsite
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Journal: Tourism Management
© 2016 Elsevier Ltd. Mobile technology is playing an increasing role in the tourist experience and a growing body of tourism research has focused on this area. There is often an implicit assumption that tourists embrace mobile connectivity and relatively little research has explored the tourist experience of disconnection, whether purposeful or imposed by technological limitations. This study explores the desire for digital (dis)connection during camping tourism. Data compiled using interviews and a survey revealed that the tourist is not 'always connected' and up to 50% have some desire to disconnect. There is ambiguity about mobile technology use in tourism with dilemmas regarding the value of connectivity versus the desire to 'get away from it all'. The analysis found digital engagement had a small effect on desire for disconnection however, patterns were not marked. The findings have implications for mobile technology solutions in tourism.