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How to cite this article:

Lestari, Nurul Sukma., Wiastuti, Rachel Dyah., & Mulyaningrum, Novita Indah. (2018). Shopping Tourism and The Need for Information Accessibility. Presented at The 5th International Conference on Management, Hospitality & Tourism and Accounting 2018 (IMHA 2018). 3-4 September 2018. Bina Nusantara University. To be published in Pertanika Journal of Social Science and Humanities (JSSH)- Scopus Indexed



Nurul Sukma Lestari*, Rachel Dyah Wiastuti, and Novita Indah Mulyaningrum

Hotel Management Department

Faculty of Economics and Communication, Bina Nusantara University

Jl. KH Syahdan No.9, Palmerah, Jakarta 11480, Indonesia

Phone +62 21 5345830 ext.2347, Fax +62 21 5300244,

Mobile +62 81295871673


*Corresponding author


Shopping has turned into a major tourist activity and has become a factor in the selection of the destination.  Accessible environments and services enhance the experience of shopping, which can expand the general intensity of tourism goals.  The purpose of this research is to identify the implementation of accessible information in shopping malls in Jakarta.  This is a qualitative descriptive research. Primary data was collected through direct observation and interviews between January and February 2018. The official website of the Jakarta Tourism & Culture Board was used as a recommendation to designate eight shopping malls as the research objects. The results give an overall picture that denotes accessible information in tourism, which are categorized into seven variables: printed material, digital documents, audio-visual content, websites, mobile applications, self-service terminals/mobile devices, and signage. This research contributes to the understanding of shopping tourism development in Jakarta in enhancing their information accessibility to gain a better competitive advantage and be in line with the Tourism for All concept.

Keywords: accessible information, accessibility, shopping mall, shopping tourism 


Tourism has been developing into an activity of worldwide importance and significance (Raluca & Gina, 2008).  For the last few years, tourism has come up with extension and broadening to end up as one of the biggest and quickest developing financial segments on the planet (UNWTO, 2017). The tourism sector will see continued growth for the next twenty years (UNWTO, 2011).  However, tourism packages should be intended for all as one as one of the prerequisites to fulfilling the concept of accessible tourism (Wiastuti, Adiati, & Lestari, 2018).  There are many activities in the realm of tourism, one of them being shopping activities.  Shopping has turned into a fundamental visitor action and records for a lot of tourism use (Choi, Heo, & Law, 2015).  Shopping has turned into a component factor influencing the choice of destination, a vital factor of the whole travel experience and at times as the prime travel inspiration (World Tourism Organization, 2014).

A shopping mall is a strategic complex, with a centralized management and a system of renting units to individual traders, while the oversight is carried out by a fully responsible management (Hernandez, 2015).  Tourism objects need to separate their tourism items including shopping malls (Buhalis, 2000).  This separation is needed to keep the destination competitive (Naniopoulos & Tsalis, 2015).  To increase the quality of tourism products, the aspect of accessibility of environments and services is important; this manner expands the general intensity of tourism goals (World Tourism Organization, 2016).   To improve accessibility, tourism facilities needs to be established with full support from all parties (Lestari, Wiastuti, & Adiati, 2017). A report from the World Health Organization assumes that 15% of the worldwide populace, numbering approximately to 1 billion people, live with some type of handicap (World Tourism Organization, 2016).

The tourism industry has a challenge in providing information regarding accessibility (Daruwalla & Darcy, 2005).  Information is an important consideration for tourists in choosing a destination.  This is because most tourists nowadays will search for information before coming to a location.  The level of accessibility and detailed information was found to be very low in addressing the issues of some disabled customers (Williams, Rattray, & Grimes , 2007).

This research aims to provide an overall summary of the accessibility information in shopping malls in Jakarta and gives concrete process in the accessibility of information for the shopping centers in Jakarta towards the concepts.  Moreover, it means to answer three questions; (a) Do Shopping malls implement the concept of accessible information?  (b) How are each dimension of accessible information implemented by each shopping mall? (c) What dimension is implemented the least and the most by most of shopping malls?


Tourism for All

Accessible tourism for all is a whole package served for everyone in the tourism sector, including people with special needs (Leidner, 2006). Therefore, tourism for all is very important.  All people in the field of tourism have the same rights: independent travel, accessible facilities, trained staff, reliable information and inclusive marketing (World Tourism Organization, 2013).

Accessible Tourism

Accessible tourism allows people with disabilities to act freely and with fairness and self-esteem through the universal design for tourism products, services and environments (World Tourism Organization , 2013, p.4).  The lack of reliable information is considered a major factor that hinders people with disabilities and other travelers with accessibility requirements from traveling (Stumbo & Pegg, 2005).  Accessibility is a priority in sustainable tourism policies and business development strategies (Moon, 2016).

Accessible Information

Accessible Information is data which is capable to be read or absorbed and understood by the individual or group for which it is intended (Marsay, 2017).  Accessible Information is information provided in formats which allow every learner to access content on an equal basis with others (United Nation, 2006).  Trustworthy information can give specific information for disabled tourists and prevent keep them from having a nightmare experience and give them a memorable time during their visit (Wee & Sanmargaraja, 2016).

Accessible information consists of seven dimensions: printed materials, digital documents, audio visual content, websites, applications, self-service terminals and mobile devices, and signage (World Tourism Organization, 2016).

(1) Printed materials.  Printed material in tourism areas are mostly used during promotional activities, which describe information about services such as menus or procedures and other content (World Tourism Organization, 2016).  There are four key elements that are used on printed material to increase the legibility and readability of the documents (World Tourism Organization, 2016), which are: layout, fonts, contrast and color, and alternative format.  Leaflets and other printed materials such as brochures and fliers can give more information and raise awareness especially when given with verbal instructions ( Hussin & Razak, 2017).

(2) Digital documents.  Digital documents are information recorded in a computer or other electronic devices to display, interpret, and process (  Digital documents are used to deliver a large quantity of information in the tourism sector which is important to ensure people know what they are downloading and that the content is usable and accessible (World Tourism Organization, 2016).  A few recommendations for digital documents are: applying styles to the text; using images or pictograms; using a pre-set format; considering not using columns; using descriptive text or symbols; and all downloadable documents should have a summary provided in HTML.

(3) Audio visual content.  Audio visual means using both sight and sound, typically in the form of images and recorded speech or music (Oxford Living Dictionaries, 2018).  In the tourism sector, audio visual content can be made of many types, such as introductory videos to attractions, or an audio or video guide or lightened display boards to give information about transport vehicles or passenger terminals (World Tourism Organization, 2016).  The creators should provide captions for the multimedia content, so that it can be understood by all customers (World Tourism Organization, 2016).   Transcripts for the multimedia should be provided where captions are not provided (World Tourism Organization, 2016).   A pop-up window in a video with a translator or employing an interpreter at an event can also be considered (World Tourism Organization, 2016).  Audio description versions of the video should also be included to make it accessible to a blind audience (World Tourism Organization, 2016).  Videos should be shared in a specific link where they can be watched with other displays (World Tourism Organization, 2016).  Additionally, if a large percentage of the target market does not speak the language of the video as a first language, provide content in other languages where applicable (World Tourism Organization, 2016).

(4) Websites. A collection of web pages which are grouped together which are usually connected in various ways (Swisher, 2018).  Websites are important tools for tourism nowadays because they can give information about the products, facilities and services. Accessibility focuses on people with disabilities ( Henry, 2018).  There are four principles that should be followed in the development of any web page or web application (World Tourism Organization, 2016), which are as follows: a) Perceivable: usable regardless of a customer’s ability to see, hear or touch; b) Operable: usable forms, controls and navigation; c) Understandable: content and interfaces are clear and easy to understand; d) Robust: content can be used reliably by a wide range of devices.

(5) Applications.  Tourism apps are software applications running on mobile devices (World Tourism Organization, 2016).  They have been gradually gaining ground over websites, especially in delivering different mobile services or providing information about transport or destinations (World Tourism Organization, 2016). Mobile accessibility refers to creating websites and applications that are more accessible to people with disabilities when they are using mobile phones and other devices ( Henry, 2018).

(6) Self-service Terminals and Mobile/Smart Devices.  Self-service terminals are universal payment gateways that allow clients to perform payments for various services in interactive mode (Azry, 2015).  Public access terminals include information kiosks, ticket vending machines, information displays (e.g. flight information) and point-of-sale customer card payment systems (World Tourism Organization, 2016).  The terminals must have several conditions so disabled people can use it, such as an adjustable height, having free space around the terminal for people using wheelchairs, Braille keys, and adding a voice guide.

(7) Signage.  Signage is a tool that enables people to orientate themselves without help (World Tourism Organization, 2013). Announcements should be both visual and audible (World Tourism Organization, 2013). Accessible services and facilities should be clearly marked with easily understandable symbols of an appropriate size and color which contrasts with the background (World Tourism Organization, 2013).  Fire alarms should emit both visual and acoustic signals (World Tourism Organization, 2013).  Whenever the signage is placed in an approachable area, make sure there are no obstacles to reach them (World Tourism Organization, 2016).  Consider including alternative formats, such as raised letters and Braille (World Tourism Organization, 2016).


          This research is a qualitative approach to acknowledge the accessibility of information in various shopping malls in Jakarta.  Qualitative research tends to be more open to utilizing a scope of proof and finding new issues (Neuman W. L., 2011).  The Official Jakarta Tourism & Culture Board website ( was used as a recommendation to assign eight shopping malls as research objects. Table 1 shows information of the research objects including the abbreviations used on the findings and analysis. Primary data was gathered from field research. Secondary data was assembled from documentation and writing concentration, such as UNWTO records, UNWTO reports, journals, books and other materials.

          Table 1. Shopping Malls list and Abbreviation

No Object Abb Address
1 Pasaraya The Pride of Indonesia, Blok M PR Jl. Iskandarsyah II, No.2, Blok M, Kebayoran Baru
2 Ciputra Mall CM Jl. Arteri S. Parman
3 Central Park CP Jl. Letnan Jendral S. Parman Kav. 28
4 Pacific Place PP Jl. Jend. Sudirman Kav. 52 – 53
5 Plaza Senayan PS Jl. Asia Afrika No. 8
6 Senayan City SC Jl. Asia Afrika Lot 19
7 Plaza Indonesia PI Jl. MH. Thamrin Kav. 28-30
8 Grand Indonesia Shopping Town GI Jl. MH. Thamrin No. 1

Source: www.jakarta-tourism.go.id2018

          The observation was conducted in the eight shopping malls listed on Table 1 in a period of two months, from January to February 2018 by all three researchers.  To gather the actual implementation of accessible information in each object, the researchers spent three to four hours observing each shopping mall. A checklist was used as a guideline as a direction to cover all parameters of accessible information in tourism. The checklist contains  eight parts: (1) General information about the shopping malls, day, date, time of observation  (2) Checklist and notes of printed material, (3) Checklist and notes of the digital documents, (4) Checklist and notes of the audio visual content, (5) Checklist and notes of websites, (6) Checklist and notes of the applications, (7) Checklist and notes of the self-service terminals and mobile/smart devices, (8) Checklist and notes of signage.  Documentation was done directly at the same time of the observation. The documentation collected were items such as photos that were taken during observation, marketing tools from each mall, applications from each mall, official websites from each mall, and mobile applications.

            Analysis was carried out after the observation was completed and all eight parts of the checklist filled, together with all the data findings from the documentation.  Data was evaluated by methodically ordering the checklist, field notes, pictures, and other materials such as marketing tools and online information.  Through the analysis, the authors can describe the tourism accessibility information in each shopping mall.



Result are explained in seven subsections: printed material, digital documents, audio visual content, websites, applications, self-service terminals and mobile/smart devices, and signage. The name of each shopping mall is abbreviated as written on Table 1.

(1) Printed material

The only shopping mall which has a monthly printed material is PP, calling it the Monthly Newsletter.  The layout is simple and clear in describing the information about what events will take place in the month.  However, the newsletter is only published in English. The font is too small at around 8-point in size, where the minimal font should be 12-point in size.  The contrast is good because the newsletter uses a white background with black lettering making it easy to read the text.  The newsletter is printed on regular paper which is good because it makes it easy for people to read, but the cover is printed in glossy paper and the back cover where the general information about PP is especially difficult to read.  CM and PS occasionally have printed material in addition to the printed material from each tenant that is placed at the concierge. For the CM brochure, the layout is clear stating information about the events there.  The text is in English, some of the fonts are quite large at around 16-point size but there is also text with a small font of about 9-point size.  The contrast is not very good, where in the January edition CM used a purple background with gold coloured text, which is difficult to read especially when the font is quite small.  The brochure is printed on glossy paper. PR has regular printed material about the passport card for PR. The layout of the information is quite simple with text in the Indonesian language. Contrast is good by using red as a background and white as the text.  It is printed on glossy paper, but the text is still easy to read because the font is about 14-point size.    Other shopping malls like CP, SC, PI and GI did not have printed material but they provided strategic places on every floor for tenants to place their brochures for free.  PR, CM, CP, PP, SC, PS, PI, GI all have alternative formats for printed material.  All the shopping malls have large printed material which was placed in a neon box.  There is a variety of content; most of the information is about the tenants or events at the shopping mall.

(2) Digital Document

SC has an e-magazine every quarterly (spring, summer, fall, and winter) which can be downloaded or read on the internet.  The e-magazines use images with text descriptions and can be accessed by a hyperlink and shared through Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google accounts.  PS has monthly magazine (e-magazine) which mostly use images without text for the content which can also be shared through Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.  PP has a digital document to promote events and offers.  Both images and texts are used on the document which can be shared through Facebook, Twitter and email.  This document can be accessed by hyperlink from the main website.  PR has an e-brochure for online shopping.  The images used are of the products they are offering along with a text of description and price and can be shared through Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.  GI has a newsletter, but customers need to subscribe by email.  CM, CP, and PI do not publish any digital documents.  All digital documents are in the English language.

(3) Audio-visual content

Most of the shopping malls have visual content. Some of the malls have audio content to announce the information of the opening and closing time.  CP has visual content on big screens and many illuminated display boards placed at strategic points.  For audio content, CP has a phone booth where the customer can ask about information about the mall and at least one booth is placed on every floor.  GI and PI have touch screen internet protocol televisions (IP TV) as visual content without audio and is placed on every floor near the escalator.  Illuminated displays are also scattered on every floor. SC also has IP TV in the elevator waiting areas and illuminated boards on every floor near the escalator. PS have touch screen internet protocol televisions (IP TV) without audio.  Illuminated boards are placed on every floor in strategic places such as near the escalator.  PR and PP have illuminated boards for visual content.  CM is the only shopping mall without any audio-visual content, however they place it on their website in the form of a video.

(4) Websites

All the eight shopping malls have official websites. Only the PS official website has two languages, Indonesian and English; the other seven had only English.  PR, CM, PP, PI, GI, and PP have information about the opening and closing time, but only PR and CM mention it on the first page of the website.  CP and SC do not mention the opening and closing time.  PS has the working hours for all the tenants.  PP, GI and PI have directions from Google maps to make it easier for visitors to look for the place they want to visit.  GI is the only one who provided information about “how to get to Grand Indonesia” and explains the parking area for cars, motorcycles and bikes, and which street to access the parking area from.

(5) Applications

PP, CM, PI and CP have mobile applications.  SC has a mobile application only for the tenants.  PP, PI, and SC need to log in, while CP and CM do not. The PP application has information about membership and the benefits of the membership and catalogue.  Most of the mobile applications contain general information about the mall.  The applications have figures about the tenants, the location of the tenants on each floor, events, promotions and general information of the mall.  There is an item in the settings of each of the applications mentioned above where the customer can give feedback and rate the application. Hence the application can be utilized as a control for quality.

(6) Self-service Terminals and Mobile/Smart Devices

Only CP and GI have a self-service terminal.  So far, the terminal is used only for the loyalty program and is in the card lounge. It is only used for queuing and to check on point rewards.

(7) Signage

Most of the signage is in English and pictograms; some are placed on the ceiling, so it is easy to read from afar.  All the shopping malls have a homogenous design of signage for some facilities, such as for the toilets, emergency signs, exits, elevators, and no-smoking signs.  However, there are no Braille formats for the signage.  Most of the emergency facilities can be seen and noticed by visitors, and the signage is clear enough to be understood by people.


The results recognize how each measurement of accessible information in tourism is implemented by each shopping mall.  Accessible information in tourism is not only for people with disabilities but also for the target market of people who do not speak the language. According to the results, only one shopping mall has a regular monthly newsletter (PP), while two of the shopping malls have occasional brochures (CM and PS). Eight of the shopping malls have alternative printed material where the printed material is only in English.  Most of the shopping malls have digital documents, except for CM, CP, and PI.  The only shopping mall with audio-visual content is CM, which is available in video format and placed on their website, so customers can download or watch it online.  Meanwhile, the other seven have separate audio and visual content.

Some of the visual content is operated by touch screen.  All the shopping malls have official websites, which contain general information (except CP and SC), tenants, promotions, and events.  Three of the shopping malls have a direction map from Google. Websites plays a significant part in tourism as they offer access to a greater number of tourism products and services (World Tourism Organization, 2016).  Four of the shopping malls have a mobile application for customers (PP, CM, PI, and CP), while SC only provides one for tenants.  Most of the shopping malls do not have self-service terminals (except CP and GI), the two that do use them for their loyalty programs.  Most of the shopping malls have good signage with text and pictograms where the location of the signage is free of obstacles.


Referring to the research question: all the shopping malls studied do not implement the accessible information concept widely, but only partially.  PP is the only shopping mall that implemented all six dimensions of accessible information in tourism.  The second position is given to GI, who applied five dimensions.  The audio-visual content, applications and self-service terminals and mobile/smart devices are the dimensions of accessible information that needs to be improved by the shopping malls.  Especially for the self-service terminals and mobile/smart devices which can be optimized to be used not only for loyalty programs but also for other functions as well.  The most implemented dimensions are websites and signage.  All the eight shopping malls have these two dimensions, although some only have a very simple website and signage but still can provide useful information for the visitor.  Meanwhile, the least implemented dimension are the self-service terminals and mobile/smart devices. When the shopping malls can optimize the use of this dimension, it may prove to be very beneficial for accessible information in tourism.


This research acknowledges the Bina Nusantara University 2018Research Grant and another researcher in the same field.


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Written By
Rachel Dyah Wiastuti
SCC Hospitality | Bina Nusantara University

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