“With a young spirit, we will be young forever”: Exploring the links between tourism and ageing well in contemporary China

Tingting Elle LI*, Eric T.H. CHAN

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)peer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This research explores the entangled relationships between tourism, ageing and well-being in later life. We challenge the universal connotations of old age and “ageing well” and see their relationships with tourism as dynamic processes, in which older people are continuously producing different meanings and fulfilling personal quests over life courses. Using the contextualist and temporal lens, four scenarios of the evolving relationships between tourism and ageing well were identified from the lived experiences and travel histories of 48 Chinese senior travelers. The results demonstrate that how tourism affects ageing well are shaped by senior travellers' early life and travel experiences, the personalised conceptions attached to tourism and well-being, which are indeed complex responses to their personal, social and cultural contexts. This research unveils vivid pictures of Chinese older adults’ leisure lives, and highlights the urgency to develop relevant tourism policies and marketing strategies to cater for their changing needs.

Original languageEnglish
Article number104345
Number of pages9
JournalTourism Management
Volume86
Early online date7 May 2021
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2021
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

We would like to express our sincere gratitude to the Shenzhen middle-old Age Group and Association, for their interest in this project and continuous support during and after the data-collection process. We also like to thank our three anonymous reviewers and the handling editor for their constructive comments.

Keywords

  • Ageing well
  • Contemporary China
  • Contextualist
  • Life course
  • Senior tourists
  • Subjective well-being

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