Last week, a few of Connect Worldwide’s team members attended a webinar regarding the current hospitality and travel trends and what trends are here to stay. And we believe the information was too beneficial not to share. So here is some information we acquired about the forthcoming travel trends for Summer 2021.
Novice Travelers are Eager to Travel:
Since 2019, according to ADARA, Novice Travelers, who comprise 80% of the travel market, are beginning to gain shares at the expense of Casual travelers who make up 15% of the market and Top-Tier travelers who make up 5% of the market. It seems that even though casual travelers still make up the majority of overall travel bookings, Novice Travelers have become particularly eager to travel. So what are some characteristics of a Novice traveler? On average, novice travelers tend to take about four trips per year, spend 7.5k average annual spending on travel, and have little booking loyalty. In 2019 72% of the markets’ Novice travelers booked a vacation with a booking period of 1 to 2 days, and 21% booked 3 to 4 days, but as of 2021, we can see more novice travelers (30%) are booking lengthier stays 3-4 days. And only 56% booked 1 to 2 days. These Infrequent travelers who are less familiar with brands are now adding to the mix, which is excellent news for the hotel and travel industries. Exposure to new guests brings a new source of income to many Hotel brands. If they can over-deliver regarding travelers’ expectations, they have the opportunity to obtain a loyal customer for life.
Domestic & International Booking for Summer 2021:
Due to Covid-19, it comes as no shock that there is a current emphasis on domestic travel. Local destinations are turning into the solution for deprived travelers, and we witness more people traveling to tropical and or outdoorsy destinations that are more secluded and unrestricted. In the U.S., the topmost Leisure Non-Family travel locations of Summer 2021 as of June 7 according to hotel bookings are Panama City FL, Marquette, MI, Idaho Falls-Pocatello, ID, Missoula, MT, Twin Falls, ID, Butte-Bozeman, MT, Sioux City, IA, Fresno, CA, Great Falls, MT and Rapid City, SD. The top Leisure Family travel destinations for Summer 2021 as of June 7 hotel bookings are Fairbanks, AK, Panama City, FL, Missoula, MT, Marquette, MI, Billings, MT, Honolulu, HI, Yakima-Pasco, WA, Idaho Falls-Pocatello, ID, Amarillo, TX, Sioux City, IA. All of these locations above for leisure family and non-family travel are up in their percentage change of bookings compared to bookings in 2019.
All international destinations for Summer 2021 are down in their flight bookings compared to flight bookings in 2019. Still, as of June 8, the destinations with the most international flights were as followed 1) Mexico, 2) Dominican Republic, 3) Spain, 4) Italy, 5) Costa Rica, 6) the United Kingdom, 7) Virgin Islands, 8) Greece, 9) Jamaica, and the 10) the Bahamas.
Current Consumer Trends:
Another trend the travel industry is currently seeing is the blend of business and leisure travel. We are observing travelers booking lengthier trips reason being a good number of people still work remotely and can extend their vacations; they do not feel like they have to rush home for the workweek. As a result of restricted lifestyles, there is a lot of pent-up demand in the travel and hotel industries. Due to most people having a more restrictive lifestyle due to lock-downs and regulations, the industry notices that people have been saving up their money for trips and experiences that the past year deprived them of having.
The Pandemic has accelerated pre-existing travel trends:
Regarding the hotel industry adapting rapidly to consumer needs during the Pandemic. We have seen notable big brands and even smaller boutique hotels, make significant advances in hotel safety, cleanliness, and technology innovation. Many of these trends and plans for innovation were already in motion but accelerated due to the Pandemic. Everything is becoming more user-friendly; we see hotels and travel agencies utilizing more touch-less technology services, whether to book your stay, make payments, communicate, or place custom orders. In addition, hotels have been adapting strict safety and cleanliness regulations that make customers feel at ease during their stay because current critical booking drivers for consumers are safety and cleanliness. The Pandemic has given rise to the hotel and travel industry responding to new or more prominent consumer needs. The industry has had to adapt and innovate faster than it would otherwise. Because of these presumptions, we can expect the trends of consumers demanding strict health and safety regulations and user-friendly technology to stay post-pandemic.