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Wellness Tourism - An Analysis of Tourist Preferences and Perceptions in Puducherry

Journal of Hospitality Application and Research

Volume 12 Issue 2

Published: 2017
Author(s) Name: Sibi. P.S., Sherry Abraham | Author(s) Affiliation: Assistant Professor, Department of Tourism Studies, Pondicherry University, Pondicherry, India.
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Abstract

People have been travelling for health from the ancient time. Now people are more aware of the importance of health. They consciously plan to have a healthy body and mind. Hence, travel for health is getting more popularity and it is a widely preferred form of vacationing. Medical tourism, Health tourism and Spa tourism are very common and are popular forms of fitness based tourism. Wellness is relatively a new trend with very impressive growth rate. Wellness is the special state of health focussing on the overall sense of wellbeing. Wellness tourism has become an emerging tourism market and one of the fastest growing domestic and international travel segments. Pondicherry, one of the popular beach destinations in South India and the former French colony, attracts large number of tourists and is a preferred destination for wellness tourists. The non religious spiritual ambience in Puducherry, especially in Auroville along with opportunities for yoga, meditations and alternative medicines offer a significant potential for health and wellness tourism. This paper is an attempt to evaluate the prospects of wellness tourism in Puducherry. The study is centred on Auroville, the spiritual centre of Puducherry. The data were collected using questionnaire from tourists who visited Auroville for wellness reasons. The data were analysed using SPSS and interpreted to know the demographic and tripographic features of wellness tourists to Puducherry. Their preferences in wellness activities and perceptions on the physical settings, quality of services and opportunities for wellness tourism were also evaluated. The results of the study disclose features of wellness tourism market and the dimensions of wellness tourism experiences in Puducherry.

Keywords: Health Tourism, Wellness Tourism, Medical Tourism

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