More Than Just Travellers?: A Focus on New Zealand’s Working Holiday Tourist Experiences
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This dissertation explored the working holiday scheme in New Zealand, with a focus on the experiences of the working holiday tourist and the challenges they may face. In recent years, the working holiday market has grown significantly and attracted many tourists’ attention. With New Zealand being one of the few countries that offer this scheme to many countries, it has proven to be a very popular destination for this market. Existing literature has recognised this phenomenon yet has often merged these tourists with the backpacker market as one. Academics have identified the gap in literature on the working holiday market on its own, specifically on the lack of differentiation of this phenomenon from the backpacker tourist. A qualitative exploratory research was conducted on the international working holiday tourists coming to New Zealand. This was completed by conducting eight in- depth interviews with three female and five male working holiday tourists from six different countries, which were analysed using thematic analysis. The global themes identified from the findings were then used to answer the research objectives. The participants gave sufficient information to be able to further understand the experiences of the working holiday tourists and highlight key differences between these tourists and the backpackers. Issues such as visa, accommodation and working conditions were discussed to gain an insight into the problems the working holiday tourists in New Zealand may experience. While these issues were discussed in detail, a call for further research on other potential issues such as exploitation of this market was noted. A recommendation based on these findings was made to open a government agency that will help monitor and control this developing market and help minimise these issues the market currently faces.