Weaponization of social media for enhancing smart tourism in Xi-An city

Main Article Content

Xizhu Wang
Taksina Chai-ittipornwong
Panom Wansiri


Xi’an is a city of profound history and cultural heritage, encompassing both ancient wonders and modern charm under the explosion of digital communication. This research aims to study the potential of Xi’an city to a smart tourism and explore significances of social media to the tourism. The study used an in-depth interview and questionnaire survey for data collection. The representatives from tourism service areas, including (1) the basic services; catering, hotel, and transportation, (2) a recreation tourism; sightseeing, shopping, and entertainment, (3) sport and health tourism, and (4) education and life-learning tourism, are determined for interviewing. The use and satisfaction of Xi’an’s tourists with social media, coupled with understanding and perception of the values of smart tourism are raised in the questionnaire. Importance-Performance Analysis is applied for addressing the improvement of online media quality to tourism service in Xi’an. The findings are that social media is highly significant to tourism communication for tourists and tourism services provided, and the potential of Xi’an for smart tourism is outstanding as showing the readiness in the criteria of data driven, real-time response, intelligent recommendation, multidimensional interaction, and tourism innovation. The study also found that different tourists have different perceptions and expectations of smart apps for tourism communication. Most tourists utilize social media for every tourism activity, but their satisfaction is contributed to only two service areas, including recreation tourism and sports and health tourism. The quality of smart media integrated into basic tourism services requires immediate improvement to meet a more personalized and high-quality travel experience provided. The enhancement of smart tourism in Xi’an needs to be continuously improved through the joint efforts of all stakeholders to reach international visibility and reputation, and the city goal of sustainable development, accordingly.

Article Details

Research Articles