Tourist behaviour: a psychological perspective pages:85-107
Many Western development NGOs have a well-established tradition of organizing field trips for their staff, volunteers, and benefactors to projects in developing countries. These NGOs are increasingly offering their ‘off-the-beaten-track’ journeys to the broad public as well. This kind of tourism can be called ‘development tourism’. Interestingly, the motivations of tourists participating in such journeys clearly differ from the intentions of the organizing NGOs. Although aimed at confronting people with the complexity of development aid and gain extra support for project work, the case study analyzed in this chapter shows how tourists choosing for development tourism seem to be more preoccupied with their self-development. Development tourism can therefore best be regarded as yet another response to the growing demand for new, distinctive kinds of leisure for the educated, mainly Western, middle-class.