10 Things You Need to Know About Millennial Travelers
By Rob Patterson
April 16, 2019
With the majority of Millennials now in the workforce, and many of them in their prime spending years, we’re noticing many ways in which they are different from previous generations. Perhaps most notably, Millennials are taking longer than their predecessors to reach some of life’s major landmarks, such as marriage and buying a home. As a result, they’re taking that time and money and spending it elsewhere. One place where that money is being invested? Travel experiences.
While Millennial interest in travel has been a boon to the industry as a whole, it’s important to remember that they differ greatly from their predecessors. As many Millennials grew up with the internet, they’re keenly aware of all the resources available to them to plan a trip. Likewise, the non-stop exposure to social media means that they’re constantly being influenced – whether consciously or subconsciously – by the actions of their peers. Here, we take a look at how Millennials plan trips, what influences their decisions, and what they are expecting from the travel industry in the coming years.
Despite Millennials’ love of travel, the researching process is a pain point for them. According to a study from Hotels.com, they spend an average of eight hours researching their upcoming vacations, but become bored after only 40 minutes.
While travel agents are still a great resource for travelers of all ages, Millennials view their friends, family, and fellow consumers as top resources to consult during the planning process. Fifty-two percent consult review sites and travel forums as they plan (compared to 40% of non-Millennials) while 50% speak with family and friends (30% of non-Millennials).
Forty-two percent of Millennials say they strongly agree that photos posted by friends on social media impact where they decide to go on vacation. This number dwindles for both Generation X (29%) and Baby Boomers (16%).
When Millennials go on a trip, they’ll likely post about it. Fifty-six percent say they have posted a photo of their vacation while away, compared to only 32% of all other generations. What will they post about? Scenic destinations and insta-worthy accommodations provide the best content, while travel and transportation get less traction.
Whether they book vacations through a travel agent or through providers like airlines and hotels, Millennials are seeking convenience. However, with price being their second biggest consideration, it’s clear that travel companies must strike a delicate balance between making the booking process simple while securing the best possible price for customers.
Three out of four Millennials say they’d be interested in a service that gives personalized travel recommendations based on their stated budget, while two out of three say they’d be interested in recommendations based on their personality.
This generation doesn’t expect the service to stop with booking. Since many have grown up socializing over instant messaging, there’s desire from them — and, thus, opportunity for brands — for 24/7 mobile concierge services in order to ensure that travel goes off without a hitch.
Within Millennials, there are varying motivations for going on a trip. While younger ones tend to go on vacation to reduce stress or seek adventure, their older counterparts are more focused on spending quality time with their significant others.
In 2018, global travelers booked 69% more wellness experiences than they did in 2017. This number jumps to 82% when looking at only U.S. travelers. Mineral hot springs, anyone?
Global travel bookings for classes and workshops saw a 90% YoY increase from 2017 to 2018. Whether it’s salsa dancing in San Juan or surf lessons in Sydney, travelers are more interested than ever in enriching their lives with new skills and experiences.
Is your brand looking to win over the coveted Millennial travelers? Contact us today to learn how our suite of experiential-led services can help build brand awareness, generate trial, and earn you lifelong loyalists.
Sources: Expedia Millennial Traveler Report Why Millennials Will Shape the Next 20 Years of Travel 2019, TripAdvisor Experiential Travel Trends of 2019, Stackla How to Turn Lookers into Bookers 2019, TravelPulse Millennials are Tired of Researching Their Vacations 2019