Travel burnout: Exploring the return journeys of pilgrim-tourists amidst the COVID-19 pandemic

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This study investigates the timely, yet academically unexplored, topic of travel burnout. The study explores the return journeys of pilgrim-tourists from Iran to Pakistan during COVID-19 pandemic and contextualizes travel burnout as a negative emotional state placed in the existing theoretical streams. The conservation of resources theory (Hobfoll, 1989; 2004) provided theoretical support to guide current study's research agenda. On the basis of a qualitative grounded theory research design, 47 in-depth interviews of pilgrim-tourists were conducted. Travel burnout emerged as a multidimensional concept comprising 3 core dimensions, i.e., low tourist self-efficacy, travel exhaustion and emotional maladaptation. Travel burnout anchors emerged as those factors that facilitated preservation of the tourists' resources when travel circumstances became beyond their regulation. The results pave the way for a more theoretically sound conceptualization of travel burnout. For destination marketing organizations, various avenues are identified that need attention to alleviate the tourist concerns that lead to burnout.

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Tourism Management



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