This article examines whether communication at a distance and travel to meet in person compete with or complement each other in the case of travel to meet immigrants’ relatives and whether and to what extent each of the diverse “technology encounters” plays a different role in this regard. Drawing upon two bodies of knowledge, travel and tourism and social networks literatures, an empirical specification that explains the frequency of travel to meets immigrants relatives is specified. Based on a sample of 300 Israeli respondents, this equation is estimated simultaneously with the occurrences of their relatives’ visits to Israel, while accounting for the endogeneity of strength of social ties, frequency of contact via communication technologies (CT), and choice of CT platforms. The study shows that increased frequency of maintaining communication at a distance is associated with increased travel frequency, but the choice of the CT medium matters; heavy use of some CTs corresponds with more frequent travel to meet in person in comparison to heavy reliance on other CTs.
Bibliographical notePublisher Copyright:
© 2015, Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.
- Communication technologies
- Social networks