Inderscience Publishers

Are international students tourists?

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This paper theoretically explores the inconsistencies in the definition and composition of inbound tourists. A detailed review of existing literature was conducted to establish the evidence in support of the inclusion of foreign students as part of inbound tourists. The three most obvious consequences are cross-border movement, economic impacts and socio-cultural consequences. These evidences in support of foreign students as inbound tourists were extracted from both the academic and industry reports where foreign students are regarded as a significant part of inbound tourist source of revenue through foreign exchange earnings. Thus, confirming their economic impact on the host country through living costs, payment of tuition fees and travelling expenses. Notable among their reasons for travelling is to relax, have fun, chill out, and participate with friends in sightseeing. A major implication in this paper is that it has availed tourist researchers the opportunities to use foreign students as potential respondents in inbound tourist research. It concludes with some recommendations for future researches.

Keywords: tourism, inbound tourist, foreign students, tourist as research respondents

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