Customer responses to environmentally-certified hotels: the moderating effect of environmental consciousness on the formation of behavioral intentions
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ABSTRACT: Environmental certifications are considered an extremely useful tool to promote sustainable tourism; however, little is known about customer perceptions of these schemes and how these certifications might relate to customer behavior when there are customer segments with different levels of environmental consciousness. This study develops a model that investigates the relationship between green practices, green image, environmental consciousness and the behavioral intentions of customers in a certified hotel context. The study examines the direct and moderating role of environmental consciousness in the formation of behavioral intentions based on green initiatives. To test the proposed model empirically, 502 personal surveys of hotel customers were conducted in Spain using a structured questionnaire. The findings show that customer perceptions of green practices have a directly positive effect on a hotel's green image. At the same time, this green image has directly positive effects on customer behavioral intentions toward certified hotels. The authors also found that the higher the environmental consciousness of consumers, the greater their intention to stay, to spread positive word-of-mouth and pay a premium for environmentally certified hotels. Finally, consumer environmental consciousness also exerts a moderating effect on the causal relationship between green image and behavioral intentions.
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