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Young Chinese Becoming Working Holiday Makers In New Zealand: A Thematic Analysis Of WHMs’ Motivations

H. Zhu, H. Tucker, Tara Duncan, J. Zhang
Published 2019 · Economics

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ABSTRACT The working holiday scheme of New Zealand provides young Chinese with a unique opportunity to have a prolonged work or study and travel experience in New Zealand. Until September 2015, New Zealand was the only working holiday destination for young Chinese and more recently only New Zealand and Australia offer this scheme to young Chinese. With the increasing interest in long-term backpacking, Chinese youth have chosen working holidays as their way to experience the world. The question is thus raised as to why it is that Chinese youth chose working holidays among different options and moreover, what affects their decision to embark on working holidays. This study explores and presents a thematic analysis of thirty-four woking holiday makers (WHMs) from Mainland China. Three organizing themes, namely escapism, cost efficiency and timing, are identified and discussed through consideration of cultural and social influences. The findings of this study facilitate the understanding of this growing cohort of Chinese WHMs. With the possibility of more countries initiating similar schemes for young Chinese, implications and future research directions are also discussed.
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