Touristhood – Various Stages of Being a Tourist

The process by which a person decides to leave his ordinary, familiar life and decides to tour and thereafter his reintegration into his daily life-the process of Touristhood-can be divided into a few stages

The Pre-Trip Stage of Tourism Travel


The tourist wishes for a break from ordinary life. He wishes to escape or seek something. He readies himself mentally and physically for tourism. The tourist prepares for Touristhood.

The On-Trip Stage of Tourism Travel


It means a journey from the ordinary bounds of his daily life into the unbound realm of the non-ordinary. It combines

a. Spatial travel

b. Cross beyond home’s socio-cultural threshold

The cross beyond home’s threshold is aided by several touristic items, mainly symbolic- a suitcase, camera, and traveler’s cheque. The tourist wears a mask as his real identity is disguised. This mask and the symbolic signifies induce emancipatory magic. The new lifestyle is understood by the tourist and recognized and understood by others.


This stage arrives when the tourist is ‘away from it all’. The tourist enters an illusive state of detachment, disengagement, and spontaneity. The tourist peels away the home-bound cultural layers and enters a new time space. The tourist may break the cultural layers. Breaking rules becomes one of the rules of Touristhood.

The tourist assumes or knows in this non-ordinary playground animated behavior is acceptable. The society which hosts the tourist also understands this behavior. Many closed doors of the ordinary open in the land of the non-ordinary; a long list of tourist S’s (snow, sand, sea, surf, sex, etc.) is expanded to include sin.


In this, the tourist experiences a resurrection of their former self as he travels back to his ordinary world. This implies reaffirmation and yielding to the ordinary world.

The Post-Trip Stage of Tourism Travel


Tourist becomes a part of the mainstream and Touristhood is over.

Touristhood and Holiday-Making Behavior

The tourist in the process of tourist hoods exhibits a special ‘holiday-making behavior’. Some characteristics of holiday-making behavior are

· Mindlessness: This is part of the optimization of experience- we retain that memory that is sufficient to meet a need. Why is there a need, for example, to recall every detail while we are driving on a holiday trip?

· Adaptation: As tourists are holiday-makers and not only holiday-takers they adapt to failed expectations. They pursue things that give them satisfaction and avoid things that do not.

· Likes and dislikes: Most satisfactory activities during holidays relate to Maslow’s higher hierarchy of needs, while the dislikes stem from perceived threats to basic needs.

· Multi-motivation: The same holiday may be used to satisfy various needs.

Source by Sarvajeet Chandra

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