The visually impaired and consumption in restaurants

The visually impaired and consumption in restaurants Purpose – The objective of this study is to determine the relative importance that the visually impaired give to restaurant service attributes during leisure outings, and the relative utility they allocate to the various levels of these attributes. Design/methodology/approach – The study was conducted in two stages. The first stage consisted of exploratory research using focus groups; the second consisted of a survey using a structured questionnaire administered to 203 visually impaired consumers; conjoint analysis was used. Findings – The ideal restaurant profile for survey respondents is one in which: the menu is read by the server; service is provided by empathetic servers; low‐intensity light and sound are used; round tables are preferred over rectangular tables; and the server can be summoned using a button. Research limitations/implications – The use of a non‐probabilistic sample may limit the generalizability of findings. Practical implications – This study's results can be useful to restaurant managers by improving their understanding of the needs of visually‐impaired consumers. Social implications – The study contributes to the inclusion in society of the visually impaired as consumers by giving them a voice to express their needs and wants. Originality/value – Previous studies have not considered the relative utility conferred to restaurant attributes by consumers. The use of conjoint analysis allows the evaluation of the relative importance of these attributes and their levels, while at the same time shedding light on tradeoffs made by the visually impaired consumer in selecting restaurant attributes. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management Emerald Publishing

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2012 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
ISSN
0959-6119
D.O.I.
10.1108/09596111211237264
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Purpose – The objective of this study is to determine the relative importance that the visually impaired give to restaurant service attributes during leisure outings, and the relative utility they allocate to the various levels of these attributes. Design/methodology/approach – The study was conducted in two stages. The first stage consisted of exploratory research using focus groups; the second consisted of a survey using a structured questionnaire administered to 203 visually impaired consumers; conjoint analysis was used. Findings – The ideal restaurant profile for survey respondents is one in which: the menu is read by the server; service is provided by empathetic servers; low‐intensity light and sound are used; round tables are preferred over rectangular tables; and the server can be summoned using a button. Research limitations/implications – The use of a non‐probabilistic sample may limit the generalizability of findings. Practical implications – This study's results can be useful to restaurant managers by improving their understanding of the needs of visually‐impaired consumers. Social implications – The study contributes to the inclusion in society of the visually impaired as consumers by giving them a voice to express their needs and wants. Originality/value – Previous studies have not considered the relative utility conferred to restaurant attributes by consumers. The use of conjoint analysis allows the evaluation of the relative importance of these attributes and their levels, while at the same time shedding light on tradeoffs made by the visually impaired consumer in selecting restaurant attributes.

Journal

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality ManagementEmerald Publishing

Published: Jul 6, 2012

Keywords: Restaurant management; Visually impaired; Consumption; Disabled people; Blind people; Hotel and catering industry; Hospitality services; Customer orientation; Brazil

References

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