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The purpose of this study is to explore the impact of Wi-Fi service on the millennial generation’s loyalty to restaurants. Additionally, this study examines the impact of Wi-Fi service on three different types of restaurants (coffee shops, fast-food restaurants and casual dining restaurants). Furthermore, this study examines the similarities and differences that exist cross-culturally between Americans and Koreans.Design/methodology/approachA total number of 480 questionnaires were collected to empirically test the study model. A factor analysis that used a principal components analysis with varimax rotation was performed to condense the loyalty items into a few underlying constructs, and the Cronbach’s alpha was checked to test for reliability. A multiple regression analysis and t-test were performed to test the study hypotheses.FindingsThe results show that Wi-Fi service has a significant impact on millennials’ loyalty behavior on all three types of restaurants in this study. However, the differences between Americans and Koreans on how they perceive the Wi-Fi services turned out to be significant only for coffee shops.Research limitations/implicationsThe authors used a non-probability convenience sampling method for data collection. The findings cannot be generalized to other types of restaurants, such as fine dining and luxury restaurants. Although the results indicate a positive relation between Wi-Fi usage and a customer’s loyalty, loyalty is a multifaceted concept where a variety of factors, such as frequency or convenience can have an impact.Practical implicationsThe findings should encourage marketers in the restaurant industry to use Wi-Fi as a value-added service for their customers.Originality/valueThere are limited studies on how significant Wi-Fi service is for the hospitality industry, and in particular, for restaurants. This study builds on the scholarship of Cobanoglu et al. (2012) on the value of the customer loyalty by providing new insights into customers’ views on Wi-Fi service in the restaurant industry.
Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Technology – Emerald Publishing
Published: Sep 13, 2019
Keywords: Customer loyalty; Cross-cultural; Restaurant industry; Millennials; Wi-Fi
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