We attended CIMTIG's inaugural Travel Vision event yesterday with speakers from the British Travel Awards (who survey 15,000 consumers each year) and GfK Ascent (official collators of travel industry stats collating more than 19 million consumer choices).
There were stats aplenty, key insights being:
The great news for the industry is that despite the economic situation, 91% of those surveyed regarded holidays as a necessity, not a luxury. 84% said they will still go on holiday this year and control expenditure and save money where they can. For instance consumers would purchase travel insurance on price alone and book excursions on holiday believing them to be cheaper. An increasing number of people are moving away from the traditional 7 or 14 night holidays in favour of breaks between 8 and 13 nights.
In line with controlling costs as predicted by bgb, 'all-inclusive' holidays have grown in popularity (up 17 %) largely at the expense of self-catering holidays (down 17%). For 2010, 'all-inclusive' holidays account for one in three bookings, with families accounting for 42% of the 'all-inclusive' market. Overall though the family market has been hard hit by the economy with a drop of 13% in 2009 and the outlook for 2010 for this segment remains less buoyant.
No surprises that the internet continues to be pivotal to the travel industry; 75% of travellers will research their holiday online with the same figure saying they take into account comments and opinions of other holidaymakers. The appropriate engagement in social media is therefore essential. bgb has its own in-house social media monitoring system so talk to us if you need assistance in this area.
Whilst research online is high, there hasn't been a major increase in those actually booking online. As a result travellers are often approaching agents more informed and clearer on what they want.
Currency continues to be a key driver for destinations, with non-euro zone countries like Egypt and Turkey showing significant growth in visitor numbers from the UK and that trend is set to continue. It's not just the Brits who are favouring these markets, the Russians are too, so availability could be limited. We note however in a recent currency survey from the Post Office, that costs were rising in Turkey, with Euro countries like Spain now being cheaper.
Capacity reductions in the market have meant fewer holidays being sold at discounted prices, a trend set to continue for 2010.
If you would like any more insights, please don't hesitate to contact us.