Award Date


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Hotel Administration

First Committee Member

Carola Raab

Second Committee Member

William Werner

Third Committee Member

Bo J. Bernhard

Fourth Committee Member

Anjala S. Krishen

Number of Pages



Although Chinese outbound tourists made enormous economic contribution to the U.S. restaurant industry, they seem to have the tendency to consume Chinese cuisine solely during their international trips. This study applies structural equation modeling (SEM) to evaluate different behavioral beliefs' impact on the intentions of Chinese outbound tourist unfamiliar ethnic food consumption in the U.S. Additionally, this research combines the Theory of Planned Behavior (TPB) and food neophobia, a food-related personality trait to better explain Chinese outbound tourists' food rejection behavior in the U.S.

Results of this study showed safety concern, acceptance of table manners, perceived communication gap and food neophobia, but not food sensory appeal, significantly affect intention through different mediation effects (attitudes of consuming unfamiliar ethnic food and attitudes of service quality). Moreover, subjective norms affect intention as TPB indicates. However, perceived behavioral control did not have an impact on intention. The results of this study recommend ethnic food restaurateurs in the U.S. should ensure food safety, provide better communication and explain the menu items, particularly to Chinese tourists. In addition, restaurant owners need to ascertain that guests are aware of the table manners associated with consuming certain ethnic foods.


Chinese; Chinese outbound tourists; Cooking; Chinese; Food consumption; Food habits; Restaurants; Theory of planned behavior; Tourists; Unfamiliar ethnic food; United States


Food and Beverage Management | Marketing | Social and Behavioral Sciences | Social Psychology | Tourism and Travel

File Format


Degree Grantor

University of Nevada, Las Vegas




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