Understanding the “Holiday Effect” in Online Restaurant Ratings

Deng, Lingfei
Xu, Dapeng
Ye, Qiang
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Plenty of studies have demonstrated the holiday effect in human decision-makings. However, extant research fails to explore whether and how a holiday effect exists in online word-of-mouth generation. This work utilizes online restaurant reviews obtained from the most popular review platform in China to investigate this question with multiple empirical tests. The results suggest that diners are more likely to give a lower online rating on holidays, and this relationship is driven by a combination of restaurants’ specific reasons and diners’ specific factors. Specifically, the level of crowdedness and the quality of the restaurant can partly explain this relationship. Moreover, reviewers are found to be driven by cognitive mental processes instead of being carried away by emotions when they post online ratings on holidays. However, those who need to work overtime during holidays are found to be driven by bad mood when they post online ratings.
Crowd-based Platforms, cognitive mental processes, crowdedness, holiday effect, online ratings
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