Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Management
School of Business and Law
National Natural Science Foundation of China under Grant[number 42271243 / Huaqiao University High-Level Talents Research Launch Program under Grant number 22SKBS026
This study aims to examine how distance to risk center in the COVID-19 context moderates the effects of two contrasting risk message frames (amplifying vs. attenuating) on tourists' post-pandemic travel intention via the mediation of ontological security threat and perceived coping efficacy. Two experiments were designed to test the proposed conceptual model. Results of experiment 1 showed that risk messages predicted tourists’ ontological security threat, perceived coping efficacy, and travel intention. Results of experiment 2 showed that ontological security threat and perceived coping efficacy partially mediated the effects of risk messages on travel intention. Moreover, distance to risk center moderated the relationships between risk message frames and travel intention via ontological security threat and perceived coping efficacy, demonstrating different patterns (i.e., “ripple effect”, “psychological typhoon eye effect”, “marginal zone effect”). This study contributes to an enhanced understanding of the effect of risk message framing in the COVID-19 context by clarifying the role of geographic distance, which is beneficial for destinations to adopt differentiated risk communication strategies for different pandemic areas and levels of pandemic severity.
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Available for download on Monday, June 30, 2025