The role of tourist experience in Hungary’s domestic VFR travels
Visiting friends and relatives (VFR) is the main drive of domestic travels in most of the countries. The Central Statistical Office in Hungary collects data about travel behavior of local residents since 2004, which helps to outline some specifics of the Hungarian VFR travel and tourism. Our previous study exploring Hungary’s transparent tourism pointed out that travellers with VFR motivation are visiting tourist attractions in the destination, too, and consuming services designed for touristic needs, which leads to a finding that they are partly behaving as tourists. However, there is little known about the means of VFR experience and the extent to which this experience is perceived as a tourist experience.
Based on a survey (N=896) focusing on domestic VFR travellers’ tourist behavior, the aim is to describe and discuss to what extent can be VFR experience viewed as tourist experience, and what are the factors which strengthen the relation between VFR and tourist experience. It was found, that those visiting friends (VF), staying for longer, and participating touristic like activities obtain tourist experience with a higher chance, than those visiting relatives (VR), staying for shorter time, and being rather passive during the visit.