Understandings of tourists’ contemporary information needs that emphasize spontaneous travel decision-making and tourism as an exclusively pleasurable experience do not account for the contexts of people with dementia and their carers, for whom travelling requires unique adaptations. Through netnography in four online fora, this paper investigates the hitherto under-researched travel information needs of informal carers of people living with dementia. The qualitative data highlights the breadth of pre-travel information needs and their strong emotional dimensions both when carers plan to travel with and without the person with dementia for whom they care. Our analysis uncovers the complex, interdependent nature of travel-related information queries which refer not only to narrow tourism themes but also to health, healthcare and social policy. This exploratory paper concludes with recommendations for addressing the travel information needs of this globally growing category of people, wherein collaboration across destinations, tourism and hospitality industries, the healthcare sector and other stakeholders may be required.
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- information needs
- information search