Over the years, the internet has greatly changed the way people use computers and communicate today. Many Internet terms have become part of people’s everyday language and e-mail has added a whole new means through which people can communicate. By the turn of the century, information, including access to the Internet, will be the basis for personal, economic, and political advancement. The popular name for the Internet is the information superhighway. Whether you want to find the latest financial news, browse through library catalogs, exchange information with colleagues, or join in a lively political debate, the Internet is the tool that will take you beyond telephones, faxes, and isolated computers to a burgeoning networked information frontier. The pace of change brought about by new technologies has had a significant effect on the way people live and work worldwide.
New and emerging technologies challenge the traditional process of teaching and learning, and the way education is managed. Information technology, while an important area of study in its own right, is having a major impact across all curriculum areas. As internet technology has improved, so have online reservation systems. Today, it is possible through online, to make a reservation for a hotel anywhere in the world. Hotels can create Web site and post new content on it every day. Technology has gone a long way, improving the lives of people. These technological breakthroughs have lots to offer, making great things in the easiest, fastest and efficient possible ways you can think of. Online hotel Reservation is very useful for the people especially for socials that they can now easily reserve a room in a hotel through online Internet. Easy worldwide communication provides instant access to a vast array of data.
The hotel reservation system will provide service to on-line customers, travel agents, and an administrator. On-line customers and travel agents can make searches, reservations and cancel an existing reservation on the hotel reservation’s web site. Administrator can add/update the hotel and the room information approve/disapprove a new travel agent’s account application and generate a monthly occupancy rate report for each hotel.
The design of travel and tourism websites has received substantial attention by scholars (e.g.Schegg et al., 2002; Law and Leung, 2002; Law andWong, 2003; Scharl, Wöber and Bauer, 2003; Landvogt, 2004; So and Morrison, 2004; Essawy, 2005; Jeong et al., 2005; Law and Hsu,2006;Zafiropoulos and Vrana, 2006; Schmidt, Cantallops, and dos Santos, 2007).Landvogt (2004) evaluates several online booking engines over 23 differentcriteria, like overall user friendliness, payment method, instant confirmation,reliability, and invoicing function among others. These criteria present some ofsystem’s functions and design principles discussed furtherin current paper.In their study Jeong et al. (2005) find that only two characteristics ofhotel websites (information completeness and ease of use) are importantdeterminants of perceived website quality.
These results are bewildering asmost studies identify more dimensions of perceived service quality to besignificant for website users. Law and Hsu (2006), for example, assess thedimensions of hotel websites (information regarding the reservation, hotelfacilities, contact details of the property, surrounding area and websitemanagement) and attributes in each dimension mostly valued by online users.Some of the most important website attributes are found to be the room rates,availability and security of payments (in the reservation informationdimension), the location maps, hotel and room amenities (in facilitiesinformation), telephone, address and e-mail of the hotel (for contactinformation), transportation to the hotel, airports and sights (for surroundingarea information), and up-to-date information, multilingual site and shortdownload time (for website management).
So and Morrison (2004) applysimilar criteria for website evaluation as the preceding study but they groupthem into technical, marketing, consumer perspective and destinationinformation perspective criteria.Essawy (2005) focuses on website usability and shows that severeusability problems with interface quality, information quality, and servicequality affect negatively the purchase and revisit intentions of website users.The author identifies some of the practical tools/activities for increasing users’perceived satisfaction, purchase intention, and potential relationship building –exchanging links with local points of interest, shorter/simpler pathways toleisure breaks, greater depth of information for room facilities and pricing,providing proactive interactions, and avoiding third-party reservation systems.
In similar vein, Scharl, Wöber and Bauer (2003) assess the effectiveness ofhotel websites. Authors identify personal, system and media factors thatcontribute to hotel website adoption. In the system factors group, that is morecontrollable by the hotel management compared to personal and media factors,they identify the perceived utility of the product, speed of the system,intelligence, layout, services, languages, navigation, interactivity, reliability ofthe system.Research has also shown that trust is an important dimension of websitedevelopment (Fam, Foscht and Collins, 2004; Chen, 2006; Wu and Chang, 2006).
If consumers do not trust the website they will not visit it, or will nottransform their visits into real purchases.Although much effort has been put towards evaluating the design oftourism websites and the identification of website attributes highly valued bycustomers, there is a gap in the research in the OHRS design and its specificproblems have not received enough attention in previous research with fewnotable exceptions. In series of reports Bainbridge (2002, 2003a, 2003b)discusses the practical aspects of the OHRS design (the search option in thesystems, the booking process and the date format), while Ivanov (2002, 2005)discusses the types and main characteristics of OHRSs and the major marketingdecisions to be taken by the marketing managers in their design.
The review of available literature on the tourism / hotel website and OHRS design reveals the following conclusions:
· Website users are interested in easy navigation through the system.
· They want abundance of information for the services offered in textand pictures.
· Trust is vital for the usage of the system.
· Website design can significantly influence the online experience of theusers and their purchase intentions. · Website design itself does not guarantee online purchases but it is theperceived utility of the product that attracts customers.
Demographic characteristics and Internet Usage Behaviour Education level, age, income,and occupation have been found to be significantly different among Internet users. Bonn etal.(1998) study showed that those who use the Internet as a travel information-gathering tool are likely to bemore educated, younger, with higher household incomes, use commercial lodging accommodations while traveling, tend to travel by air and spend more money on travel-related expenses. Weber and Roehl’s (1999) study shows similar results. They found that online travel purchasers are more likely to be people who are aged 26-55, with higherincomes, with higher status occupations, and have more years of experience with the Internet than those who do not search or purchase online. The Asian demographic patterns of online purchasers tend to mirror their Western profiles.
According tostudies carried out by Technowledge Asia in 1999 and 2000, cybershoppers in the four Asian regions (Singapore, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Malaysia) were found to be mainly males, in the age group of 26 to 35 years and better educated. Hence, it has been shown that an individual’s educational level may affect their susceptibility to attitude change. Intelligent people understandcomplex messages better, and as a result, persuasion by complex messages is more likely. In addition, an individual’s educational level is alsopartially a measure of their socioeconomic status. Weber and Roehl (1999) study found that Internet “bookers” were more likely to have used the Internet for 4 years. Other researchers confirmed that Internet bookers spend more time online per week than those booking offline (Weber and Roehl ,1999).
Finally, the intention to shop online is also influenced by consumers’ Internet shopping history (Shim et al., 2001). It is demonstrated by pastresearch findings that prior online shoppingexperiences have a direct impact on Internet shopping intentions (Weber and Roehl, 1999). There have been other studies that have supported online experience or tenure as key determinant of onlinebuying behavior (Bellman, Lohse, and Johnson, 1999 and Beldona et al, 2004). Findings indicate that the greater the number of years the user spent online combined with higher frequency of Internet usage; the greater was the likelihood of buying (Bellman et al., 1999; Weber and Roehl, 1999 and Beldona et al 2004). Alwitt and Hamer (2000) posit that consumers increase their control with more time spent on the Internet, and in turn develop finer expectations of their interactions with businesses in general.
Hammond, McWilliam, and Diaz (1998) of users’ attitudes towards the Web. Based from the literature review of the Internet users,it is noticeable that Internet users are better educated, higher incomes, higher status occupations, have more online experience, use commercial lodging accommodations while travelling and tend to travel by air. In Malaysia, one of the profiles that had an early exposure to the culture of using the Internetfor personal and professional reasons was university residents. These may consist of students, administrators and lecturers. However, university staffs are more likely to fit the profiles of the Internet users (in terms of purchasing) due to their financial capability and mobility. Consequently, this leads to: H1
: There is a relationship between the university staffs’ demographic factors and the determinants of online hotel reservation
: There is a relationship between the university staffs’ Internet usage behavior and the determinants of online hotel reservation